When I received the official game notes for Saturday's season opener at East Stroudsburg, I immediately scrolled to page 3 for Gannon's starting lineup. I half expected it to tell me nothing. In some past years John Reilly has simply listed the 5 guys who played the most the previous year.
So I was kind of shocked when I saw this starting 5: PG Adam Blazek, SG Oscar Macias, SF Stephen Battle, PF Darrell Blanton, and C Dmitry Martynenko. Of course Battle was a lock to be in the first 5, and GU insiders have told me that Macias could emerge as the best all-around Knight by season's end.
But Blazek's start shows me two things: first, Steve Piotrowicz's hip injury is more debilitating than some Gannon fans expected; second, that Blazek is adapting quickly to Reilly's system. I originally thought Blanton might be a spot player, but after seeing his supreme athleticism on display at the Maroon/Gold scrimmage, I could see why he couldn't be kept out of the starting lineup.
I'm curious to see how many minutes Martynenko gets with Tanner Furno and Bubby Johnson right behind him on the depth chart. And how will senior Shameel Carty feel coming off the bench? And will who starts really not be that big of a deal because Reilly divvys up the minutes evenly while playing a more up-tempo style? Lots of our questions will be answered in less than 48 hours.