Towson Hopes to Stun Hopkins Friday on WNST

February 17, 2012 | WNST Staff

Opening Face-Off
Hoping to win back-to-back games to open the season for the first time since 2007, the Tigers will continue their three-game road trip on Friday evening when they make the short trip down Charles Street to face No. 2 Johns Hopkins at historic Homewood Field at 5 p.m. The game will be broadcast on WNST-AM 1570 with Spiro Morekas and Hunter Lochte on the call. In addition, the game will air live on ESPNU and available online at ESPN3.com.

Updating the Tigers
Now 1-0 on the season, the Tigers used a strong second half performance to win their season opener with a 12-10 road victory over Jacksonville on Saturday afternoon. The Tigers, who won their season opener for the first time since 2007, scored seven goals after the intermission to overcome a two-goal deficit and present Coach Shawn Nadelen with his first victory as the Tigers’ coach. Senior attackman Sean Maguire led the Tigers with three goals and an assist; all three of his goals came in the second half.

Scouting the Blue Jays
Ranked No. 2 in the preseason USILA Division I Coaches’ Poll, the Blue Jays will be opening their 125th season of college lacrosse when they host the Tigers on Friday night. The Blue Jays, who finished last year with a 13-3 record and a number three national ranking, reached the NCAA quarter-finals before losing to Denver by a 14-9 margin. Senior attackman Chris Boland, who earned honorable mention USILA All-America honors last year, returns as the Blue Jays’ leading scorer after a 54-point season in 2011. Coach Dave Pietramala, who was named as an assistant coach for the United States National Team last week, begins his 12th season at the helm. He has posted a 126-41 record at Johns Hopkins, including two NCAA championships.

On Second Thought
When the Tigers face No. 2 Johns Hopkins on Friday night, it will mark the highest-ranked opponent for the Tigers since Mar. 21, 2010 when Towson hosted top-ranked Virginia at Johnny Unitas® Stadium. The game will mark the 14th time since 1980 that the Tigers have faced the nation’s second-ranked team; the Tigers are 0-13 all-time in those contests. 

Lights, Camera, Action
Friday night’s game between Towson and No. 2 Johns Hopkins will mark the Tigers’ only scheduled television appearance during the regular season. Since the start of the 1999 season, the Tigers have been featured on television 45 times, including 19 times since 2007. Mike Corey will handle the play-by-play duties while Quint Kessenich will serve as the color analyst. John Kettering is the producer for Friday night’s game.

Towson-Johns Hopkins Series History
The Tigers and the Blue Jays will be meeting for the 40th time in a series which Johns Hopkins has dominated. The Blue Jays, who have won 16 straight games in the series, hold a 36-3 advantage over the Tigers. The Tigers’ last win in the series came on Apr. 17, 1996, a 13-12 victory over the Blue Jays at Homewood Field. Two of the Tigers’ three wins in the series have come on the road and the Tigers have not beaten the Blue Jays at Unitas Stadium since May 6, 1989, a span of 12 home games.

Last Year’s Towson-Johns Hopkins Meeting
Led by three goals from attackman Kyle Wharton, No. 11 Johns Hopkins used a five-goal run in the third quarter to break a 4-4 tie and earn a 10-6 victory over the Tigers in the season opener for both teams at Johnny Unitas® Stadium. Wharton, who tallied the 10th “hat trick” of his career, scored twice in a five-minute span as the Blue Jays sprinted out to a 9-4 lead they never relinquished. Attackman Zach Palmer scored two goals with three assists for the Blue Jays while midfielder Pat Britton scored twice to lead the Tigers in a losing effort.

Too Close for Comfort
Of the 39 previous meetings between the Tigers and the Blue Jays, 14 of them have been decided by two goals or less, including eight one-goal affairs. There have also been three overtime games, including a double overtime outing three years ago at Unitas Stadium. In addition, all three of the Tigers’ wins in the series have been by a one-goal margin. The Tigers posted a 9-8 double overtime victory in 1989 at Minnegan Stadium before earning a 14-13 verdict three years later at Homewood Field. In 1996, the Tigers won by a 13-12 count at Homewood Field.

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