The Game: Johns Hopkins (2-0) welcomes Siena (1-0) to Homewood Field for the fourth all-time meeting between the two teams.
Last Time Out: Johns Hopkins improved to 2-0 with a tough 8-6 win over Delaware on Tuesday night. The Saints opened their season last Sunday at the Carrier Dome and knocked off Hobart, 13-11.
Series History: Johns Hopkins and Siena are meeting for the fourth time in a series that dates to an 11-3 Johns Hopkins win in 2009. Every meeting has taken place at Homewood Field, including last season’s 16-6 JHU victory. The Saints gave the Blue Jays all they could handle in 2010 as JHU needed an extra-man goal by Michael Kimmel with less than a minute to play to pull out an 8-7 victory.
In February: Johns Hopkins has played just 15 all-time games in the month of February and the Blue Jays are 12-3 in those 15 games. JHU has currently won eight straight games in the month of February.
These are the Facts: Johns Hopkins enters this week’s game against Siena with an all-time record of 914-294-15 (.753). The Blue Jays own nine NCAA titles, 29 USILA titles and six ILA titles for a total of 44 national championships.
Career Win Number 150: Johns Hopkins head coach Dave Pietramala picked up career win number 150 with the 12-6 victory vs. Towson in the season opener. He now sports an all-time record of 151-58 (.722), including a 128-41 (.757) record at Johns Hopkins. He ranks second all-time in school history in career coaching victories as only Hall of Fame coach Bob Scott (158 wins from 1955-74) has more victories than Pietramala while patrolling the sidelines at Homewood.
Noting JHU in the NCAA Tournament: Johns Hopkins made its 40th consecutive appearance in the NCAA Tournament last season. By comparison, the next six longest active streaks of qualifying for the NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Tournament add up to exactly 40 consecutive appearances.
First to 900: Johns Hopkins’ 10-6 win at Towson in the 2011 season opener not only got the season off on the right foot for the Blue Jays, but also made history. The win was the 900th all-time in school history, making Johns Hopkins the first program to record 900 all-time wins. JHU now has 914 all-time wins.
That’s 620 Games Over .500: The Blue Jays’ all-time record is now 914-294-15 (.753) … that’s 620 games over .500. To put this in perspective: JHU has played an average of just over 15 games per season under head coach Dave Pietramala. Using a 15-game season as a reference, if the Blue Jays posted a 5-10 record for 124 straight seasons, they would even their record at .500.
13-Win Seasons: With a 13-3 record last season, Johns Hopkins reached the 13-win mark for the fifth time under head coach Dave Pietramala and the 12th time in school history.
Home Cookin’: Johns Hopkins enters this week’s game against Siena having won eight straight games at Homewood Field. The streak is tied for the second-longest under head coach Dave Pietramala, who picked up his 75th career victory at Homewood Field with the win vs. UD and sports a gaudy 75-12 (.862) record in home games during his career at JHU.
JHU won a school and national-record 37 straight home games from 2001-06 under Pietramala’s guidance and the current eight-game home winning streak is the fourth home streak of seven wins or more since he arrived.
Striking the First Blow: Johns Hopkins scored on its first shot of the game seven times in 2011. The Blue Jays weren’t nearly as fortunate in the season-opening win vs. Towson … it took JHU all the way until its second shot of the game to find the back of the net vs. the Tigers. JHU was back in touch against Delaware as sophomore Brandon Benn scored the first of his three goals on JHU’s first shot of the game.
Nine Straight: Johns Hopkins ran its regular season winning streak to nine games with the 12-6 win over Delaware. This is the longest regular season winning streak for JHU since the Blue Jays had a nine-game run that bridged the 2009 and 2010 seasons. The last time Johns Hopkins won 10 or more consecutive regular season games was from 2004-06, when the Blue Jays won 19 consecutive regular season games.
Attack Oriented: The starting attack unit of senior Chris Boland, junior Zach Palmer and sophomore Brandon Benn combined for nine goals and three assists in the 12-6 win vs. Towson. Add in two assists by freshman Wells Stanwick,who played a regular role throughout the game, and JHU got nine goals and five assists from its four primary attackmen.
In a tighter game against Delaware, it was Benn (3g, 1a), Stanwick (1g, 2a) and Palmer (1a) leading the way with a combined four goals and four assists.
Bassett Now 15-3 in Last 18 Starts: Sophomore goalie Pierce Bassett picked up his 18th career victory in goal with the 8-6 win vs. Delaware on Tuesday night as he posted six saves and allowed six goals to improve to 18-7 in his 25 career starts. He is 15-3 in his last 18 starts dating back to the start of the 2011 season.
Bassett concluded his first full season as the starter for the Blue Jays last season and posted a 7.07 goals against average and a .570 save percentage. He finished fifth in the nation in GAA and 10th in save percentage. His fifth-place finish in GAA is the highest by a JHU goalie since Jesse Schwartzman led the nation in 2005 (6.68), while he is just the third Blue Jay to finish in the top 10 in save percentage since the NCAA began tracking men’s lacrosse statistics in 2000.
Bassett’s 7.07 goals against average is the second best by a JHU goalie since 1993 (Schwartman’s 6.68 GAA in 2005 is the best since records became available in ‘93).
The Fab Five: While the Blue Jays had just one midfielder earn All-America honors last season (John Ranagan), they return four others who performed steadily throughout the 2011 season. The first unit of sophomores John Greeley and Ranagan and freshman Rob Guida started all 16 games together, while the second group returns senior Mark Goodrich, and junior Lee Coppersmith.
The five combined for 58 goals and 30 assists in 16 games last season. The first two lines, which also include sophomore Greg Edmonds, totaled two goals and two assists vs. Towson and four goals and one assist vs. Delaware.
Must be the Speech: Whatever the coaching staff said in the locker room before the game and at halftime worked throughout the 2011 season. Johns Hopkins outscored the opposition 44-25 in the first quarter last season and 51-29 in the third quarter. While JHU was a bit slow getting going against Towson, the halftime speech worked to perfection as the Blue Jays held the Tigers scoreless in the third quarter and tallied the first six goals of the second half to stretch a 5-3 halftime lead to 11-3. JHU outscored Delaware 3-2 in the third quarter … the game was even at 2-2 after the first 15 minutes.
Streaking: Johns Hopkins is 103-29 (.780) in its last 132 regular season games dating back to the end of the 2001 season and 120-37 (.764) overall since the start of the 2002 season.
Poll Position: The Blue Jays check in at number three in this week’s USILA Coaches Poll and second in the Nike/Inside Lacrosse Media Poll. The Johns Hopkins Athletic Communications Office uses the USILA Poll to represent JHU’s official ranking at the time of a game. Prior to falling out of the top 20 of the USILA Poll on April 26 and May 3, 2010 (JHU was receiving votes in both polls), the Blue Jays had been ranked in the top 20 in 367 consecutive polls dating back to the first poll in 1973.
More Poll Position: Including this week’s USILA Poll, there have been 385 weekly polls since the inception of the poll in 1973. Amazingly, JHU has been ranked in the top 20 in 383 of those 385 polls. The Blue Jays have been in the top 10 in 362 of the 385 and the top five in 288 of those 385.
Offensive Notes of Interest: Below are several notes about the JHU offense:
• JHU has scored at least one goal in every quarter this season and two or more in seven of the eight quarters.
• Hopkins fired 42 shots on Towson. JHU generated 40 or more shots just four times last season.
• The Blue Jays scored on their first shot of the game seven times last season and did the same vs. Delaware earlier this week.
• Johns Hopkins finished 10th in the nation in scoring offense (11.25), second in scoring margin (+4.0), 12th in assists per game (6.19) and 10th in points per game (17.44) last season.
Defensive Notes of Interest: Below are several notes of interest concerning the JHU defense:
• Hopkins held Towson to just 18 shots – the fewest the Blue Jays have surrendered since holding Mount St. Mary’s to 16 shots on April 27, 2009.
• JHU held Towson scoreless for a stretch of 31:05 midway through the game and then held Delaware off the baord for 29:32 midway through the game.
• JHU has held the opposition scoreless in three of eight quarters this season (.375).
• Johns Hopkins held the opposition scoreless for a stretch of 15 minutes or longer 16 times in 16 games last season. The Blue Jays held the opposition scoreless for 10 minutes or longer 33 times.
• The Blue Jays finished sixth in the nation in scoring defense (7.25) last season.
• The starting attack units the Blue Jays faced last season combined for a total of 39 goals and 36 assists (4.69 points per game). Six of those units were held to three points or less and only five generated more than five points. The JHU starting defense (Tucker Durkin, Chris Lightner and Gavin Crisafulli) picked up where they left off last season as Towson’s starting attack totaled just two goals and two assists against JHU, while Delaware’s added three goals and three assists.
Taking Out the Finalists: Johns Hopkins defeated eventual national champion Virginia and eventual national runner-up Maryland during the 2011 regular season.
We’re Honored: Johns Hopkins produced six USILA All-Americans last season, four of which return in 2012. Headlining the group is returning First Team All-American John Ranagan (M), while classmates Tucker Durkin (defense) and Pierce Bassett (G) grabbed second team honors. Senior Chris Boland (A) rounds out JHU’s four returning All-Americans as he grabbed honorable mention honors in 2011.
The four returning All-Americans are the most for JHU since 2008 and the selection of Ranagan, Durkin and Bassett marked the first time Johns Hopkins had three sophomores earn All-America honors since 1989, when Matt Panetta (A/1st Team), Brian Voelker (M/3rd) and Bill Dwan (D/HM) were selected.