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Ravens-Falcons preseason primer: Five players to watch

Posted on 08 August 2012 by Luke Jones

The Ravens ramp up their summer preparations for the 2012 season by traveling to Atlanta to take on the Falcons in their preseason opener Thursday night.

Meeting the Falcons for the ninth time ever in the preseason, the Ravens are 5-3 all-time and defeated Atlanta by a 21-7 margin in their preseason finale last season. The two teams have met four times in the regular season, with the series tied 2-2.

Baltimore has won 10 of its last 12 preseason games, but the Ravens will naturally only play their starters a brief time as coach John Harbaugh labeled it a “standard” plan for the opening preseason contest. Most starters will play roughly a quarter and the Ravens have not game-planned in any way for the Falcons specifically.

Even with the brief cameo, quarterback Joe Flacco and the starting offense hope to play efficiently before calling it a night roughly midway through the first half.

“It’s all about timing and execution,” Harbaugh said. “How crisp do we play? How do we execute under pressure? How do the guys take that execution from a practice environment and take it to a game environment against another team in a live-type situation? It’s all about executing our offense.”

A story that may go overlooked by most fans Thursday night will be who is officiating the game at the Georgia Dome. The National Football League is currently using replacement officials after locking out its regular officials when labor negotiations were going nowhere in early June. Reports suggest the league is prepared to begin the season with replacement officials.

Some concerns have been raised over the competency of replacement officials and how it might impact player safety, but most players have had little to say about the labor dispute and the Baltimore coach took the high road when asked about the situation earlier this week.

The league has put the replacement officials through extensive training and candidates have officiated at the collegiate level or for other professional leagues.

“We don’t even think about that,” Harbaugh said. “The refs will be fine. They will be what they are. Everybody is going to try to do their best. Our guys have plenty of things to worry about besides the officiating.”

Unofficial (and largely speculative) injury report

The Ravens are not required to release an injury report like they do for regular-season games, but I’ve offered my best guess at what the injury report would look like if there were one.

Harbaugh revealed that any player who didn’t practice Tuesday would not play in the game and players who have recently been held out of extensive practice due to injury may not play either. Older veterans may also be included in the list of inactives, which could mean linebacker Ray Lewis and safety Ed Reed sit out the preseason opener.

Again, this is not meant to be an official injury report:

OUT: C Matt Birk (back), DE Arthur Jones (hip), CB Jimmy Smith (back), LB Josh Bynes (back), RB Bernard Pierce (hamstring), LB Dannell Ellerbe (hamstring), LB Darryl Blackstock (groin), WR Patrick Williams (leg), TE Dennis Pitta (hand), OL Jah Reid (calf), LB Terrell Suggs (Achilles tendon), WR David Reed (knee)
DOUBTFUL: LB Courtney Upshaw (shoulder), WR Tandon Doss (hamstring)
QUESTIONABLE: WR Jacoby Jones (undisclosed), DE Pernell McPhee (knee), DT Haloti Ngata (hamstring), OT Bryant McKinnie (back)
PROBABLE: G Marshal Yanda (limited Monday and Tuesday)

Five players to watch Thursday night

1. LT Bryant McKinnie

The 32-year-old lineman told WNST.net Wednesday morning that he will not only play but receive more reps than usual in the preseason opener in an effort to get into better football shape after missing the start of training camp with a lower back injury. McKinnie has worked mostly with the second-team offensive line as Michael Oher continues to receive most of the first-unit reps on the left side.

If McKinnie has a good showing against the Falcons, he’ll likely find his way back into his starting spot sooner rather than later as the Ravens will want to build some continuity with the offensive line. However, if he struggles, this competition could play out a little longer, especially if rookie right tackle Kelechi Osemele continues to impress as he has during training camp.

2. LB Albert McClellan

With Upshaw unlikely to play, McClellan could find himself making the start at outside linebacker along with Paul Kruger. Last season, the former practice squad member established himself as one of the team’s best special teams players and even filled in admirably at inside linebacker when Ray Lewis and Dannell Ellerbe were sidelined late in the season.

McClellan could at least put himself in the conversation with Upshaw for a starting spot if he can take advantage of his opportunities to work with the starting defense. Upshaw’s weight is still higher than it should be, and he’s just coming back from a sprained shoulder that sidelined him for over a week.

Upshaw clearly has the higher upside, but McClellan has had a strong start to training camp and his versatility could earn him some significant time defensively this season.

3. LB Nigel Carr

The rookie from Alabama State has earned plenty of publicity early in training camp, but he needs to turn in a strong performance on Thursday with Ellerbe unlikely to play with a hamstring injury.

Much like Ellerbe, Carr is considered a “thumper” and has drawn praise from the coaching staff and media alike, but he will need to show more discipline and the ability to drop into pass coverage to earn stronger consideration for a roster spot. Ellerbe figures to see action in the nickel package and is a good backup despite questions about his work ethic and durability.

If Lewis is also held out of Thursday’s game, Carr may even see some time with the starting defense, and you can’t ask for more than that as an undrafted rookie. The 6-foot-2, 247-pound linebacker will need to prove he belongs, however.

4. RB Anthony Allen

Expected to battle the rookie Pierce for the backup running back job behind Ray Rice, Allen has found plenty of reps with the 2012 third-round pick sidelined for much of camp with a hamstring injury. Instead, Allen has seen more competition from diminutive rookie free agent Bobby Rainey at running back.

Allen is a physical runner and impressed as a seventh-round rookie last preseason, but he doesn’t possess great vision, which may limit him to short-yardage and goal-line situations. However, he can gain separation from Pierce in their competition with a strong performance against the Falcons.

Rice will likely play no more than a series or two, meaning Allen will receive touches with the first-string offense as well as the second unit. The Georgia Tech product must secure the football and recognize running lanes in the Ravens’ zone blocking schemes.

5. K Justin Tucker

Tucker has impressed over and over again during the first two weeks of training camp, with a 62-yard field goal at M&T Bank Stadium being the highlight in front of 20,000 fans. As good as incumbent kicker Billy Cundiff has been during training camp, Tucker has created a serious competition by being even better.

It will be interesting to see if Tucker brings the same swagger and consistent leg to the Georgia Dome turf with the knowledge that kicks in preseason games will undoubtedly hold more weight in the eyes of Harbaugh and special teams coordinator Jerry Rosburg. Considering the Ravens have now had a kicking competition in three of their last four seasons, it’s important to remember kicks in practice only mean so much.

The Ravens will likely alternate quarters or halves for the two kickers, so you’d expect the veteran Cundiff to handle duties in the first quarter, but many eyes will be on the rookie from Texas when he gets an opportunity to line up against the Falcons.

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McKinnie ready for playing time in Atlanta Thursday night

Posted on 08 August 2012 by Luke Jones

Despite taking part in a limited number of practices after reporting late to training camp, left tackle Bryant McKinnie expects to see plenty of playing time when the Ravens travel to Atlanta for their preseason opener Thursday night.

After practicing on a limited basis for two days late last week under the acclimation period laid out by the collective bargaining agreement, McKinnie was cleared to participate fully on Monday. However, he says he will take the field against the Falcons in the first preseason game.

Harbaugh said Tuesday the coaching staff was still deciding whether to play players who had recently returned to the practice field such as McKinnie and defensive tackle Haloti Ngata.

“I’m actually going to play a little more,” McKinnie told AM 1570 WNST on Wednesday morning. “We just got back into pads on Monday, so I need to get more reps and get back on the field.”

McKinnie has received limited reps at left tackle with the starting offensive line, but the 6-foot-8 tackle has seen most of his work with the second-team line as Michael Oher continues to work primarily at left tackle for the time being. Harbaugh said at the start of training camp that Oher was the team’s left tackle until further notice, but that was before McKinnie reported on July 29 after revealing he’d suffered a back injury in a fall at his home in Florida.

The Ravens are not only evaluating McKinnie’s conditioning, but it’s clear they’re sending a message that he simply won’t be handed the starting job before proving he’s in proper football shape. The 32-year-old said last Saturday he weighed 360 pounds, which was 15 pounds heavier than the reported 345-pound mark the team desired him to weigh by the start of the preseason but 10 pounds lighter than what he weighed upon arriving in Baltimore late last August.

Plenty of questions surrounded his weight and conditioning when the Ravens signed him last year, but he was the only starting offensive lineman to play every snap during the 2011 season.

“I feel good,” McKinnie said. “I’m just ready to go work on my technique and stuff like that. Just get out here and get my reps in and get [my] footwork down. I’ve only really had one day in [full] pads.”

For now, McKinnie is focused on his play on the field and isn’t interested in discussing his reported financial strife after this week’s revelation that the Ravens will garnish 50 percent of his net compensation as part of the terms of a settlement with a lending agency that filed a lawsuit against him last November.

“There’s really no financial situation,” McKinnie said. “That was a lawsuit that took place and is actually over, so I guess they need to make a press release for that so people stop bringing that up. That’s not even on my mind.”

Listen to McKinnie’s interview with WNST.net’s Drew Forrester in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault HERE.

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Former Raven Mughelli cut by Falcons

Posted on 08 May 2012 by WNST Staff

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Navy Home Football Games To Kick Off At 3:30PM, Air On CBS Sports Net

Posted on 25 April 2012 by WNST Staff

Navy Home Football Games To Kick At 3:30 PM And Will Be Televised Live By CBS Sports Network

ANNAPOLIS, Md.—The five home games at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium will kickoff at 3:30 PM and will be televised live by CBS Sports Network.

Navy will kick-off the 2012 season on Sept. 1 in Dublin, Ireland against Notre Dame.  The game will be played at Aviva Stadium, located in the heart of Dublin, and marks the first time the stadium has hosted an American football game.

It will also be the first time in program history that Navy has opened up against Notre Dame and the second time the two teams have met in Dublin.  Navy played the Irish at Croke Park in Dublin in 1996.   The game will be broadcast by CBS Sports and kick at 2:00 PM in Dublin, which is 9:00 AM on the East Coast.

After a week off, the Mids will travel to Happy Valley on Sept. 15 to take on Bill O’Brien’s Penn State Nittany Lions.  It will be the first meeting between the two schools since 1974 when Navy shocked Penn State in State College, 7-6.   A kickoff time has not yet been announced by Penn State and the BIG Ten Conference.

VMI comes to town on Sept. 22 for the home opener at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. It will be the ninth meeting between the two schools and the first since 2003 when Navy defeated the Keydets, 37-10, in the season opener.

The Mids will have revenge on their minds when San Jose State comes calling on Sept. 29. Last fall, the Spartans eliminated the Midshipmen from bowl contention with a 27-24 victory in San Jose.

Navy will travel to Colorado Springs, Colo. for the first leg of the Commander-In-Chief’s Trophy on Oct. 6.  The Falcons won the Commander-In-Chief’s Trophy last year thanks to a 35-34 overtime victory over Navy in Annapolis.  Air Force and the Mountain West Conference have not yet released a game time.

The Mids will travel to Mount Pleasant, Mich. the following week, as Navy will play at Central Michigan on Friday, Oct. 12 at 8:00 PM ET on ESPN2.  It will be the first time Navy has played at Central Michigan and the first time Navy has played in the state of Michigan since 2006 when the Mids beat Eastern Michigan at Ford Field in Detroit.

The Indiana Hoosiers come to Annapolis the following week (Oct. 20) for Homecoming.  It will be just the third time in school history that the two teams have met and it will be Indiana’s first trip to Annapolis.  The Hoosiers will be the first Big 10 team to play at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium since Northwestern beat Navy in 2002.

East Carolina will play host to Navy on Oct. 27 in Greenville.  The Pirates knocked off Navy last year in a thriller, 38-35. East Carolina and Conference USA have not yet announced a game time.

Navy and Florida Atlantic will meet on the gridiron for the first time the following week as new head coach Carl Pelini brings his Owls North to Annapolis on Nov. 3.

Navy will make its first trip to Troy, Ala. on Nov. 10 when the Mids take on the Troy Trojans. Navy defeated Troy last year, 42-14.  Troy and the Sun Belt Conference have not yet announced a game time.

The home finale takes place on Nov. 17, when Dennis Franchione and the Texas State Bobcats come to Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium on Senior Day.

The 2012 Army-Navy Game Presented by USAA will take place at Philadelphia’s Lincoln Financial Field on Dec. 8.  Navy leads the all-time series, 56-49-7, and has won a series-record 10-consecutive games against the Black Knights.  CBS has not announced a game time as of yet.

Season tickets are on sale now for $180.   Standing room only tickets for the grass hill located at the North end zone of Navy Marine Corps Memorial Stadium are $100 for the season and the Billy the Kid Package (age 12 and under) is $60 forstanding room only tickets for the grass hill.  Children two and under do not need a ticket unless the child is occupying a sea. You can purchase tickets by calling 1-800-US4-NAVY or by going to www.navysports.com.

For information about how to get CBS Sports Network, including a full programming schedule, go to www.cbssportsnetwork.com  

2012 Navy Football Schedule
Sept. 1                        vs. Notre Dame (Dublin, Ireland)
Sept. 15            at Penn State                               
Sept. 22            VMI
Sept. 29             at San Jose State
Oct. 6                        at Air Force
Oct. 13                        at Central Michigan
Oct. 20                        Indiana (Homecoming)
Oct. 27                        at East Carolina
Nov. 3                        Florida Atlantic
Nov. 10            at Troy
Nov. 17            Texas State
Dec. 8                        vs. Army (Philadelphia)

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Undefeated Loyola Faces Test Saturday Night at Denver

Posted on 13 April 2012 by WNST Staff

Opponent Denver Pioneers
Date Saturday, April 14, 2012
Time 7:00 p.m. (MDT)
Location Denver, Colo. | Peter Barton Stadium
TV | Radio Denver Webstreaming
Series Record Denver leads, 2-0
Last Meeting Denver 12, Loyola 8 – May 16, 2012 at Baltimore

Game Data

Loyola University Maryland will play the middle game of a three-game road trip on Saturday, April 14, in The Centennial State. The Greyhounds will take on Denver University at 7 p.m. (Mountain Daylight Time) at Peter Barton Stadium.

Series History

Denver has won the first two meetings between the teams, each coming in the last two seasons since the Pioneers joined the ECAC Lacrosse League. Denver won the first meeting, 12-4, at Invesco Field in 2010, and the Pioneers then took a 12-8 decision last season in Baltimore.

In The Polls

Loyola checked in at No. 4 for the third week in a row in the USILA Coaches’ Poll this week, and the Greyhounds are in the same No. 4 spot of the Nike/Inside Lacrosse Media rankings for the second-consecutive week.. The coaches’ poll mark is Loyola’s highest ranking since it was third in the April 1, 2002, poll with a 7-0 record after downing Towson, 15-7.

Denver is currently ranked 10th in the coaches version, and eighth in the media poll.

Rally Caps

Loyola used a late rally to win its 10th game of the season last Saturday, an 8-6 victory at then-No. 14 Fairfield. The Greyhounds scored the last four goals of the game to come back from a 6-4 fourth-quarter deficit.

It was the first time this year that Loyola had trailed in the fourth quarter, and the 4-4 tie going into the final stanza was the first time it had not led outright entering the frame.

The Greyhounds held Fairfield scoreless for the final 11 minutes, 59 seconds of action.

Defense Standing Tall

The Greyhounds’ defense is ranked fifth in NCAA Division I with a 7.0 goals allowed per game mark, as they have not allowed more than eight goals in a single game this season.

Loyola is the only team in the nation with the distinction of not having allowed eight or more goals in a game. The Greyhounds are one of three teams (Massachusetts and Notre Dame are the others) who have allowed fewer than 10 in each outing this season.

Ward Steps Up Scoring

Justin Ward has raised his scoring numbers over Loyola’s last two games, complimenting fellow attack members Mike Sawyer and Eric Lusby. Against Ohio State and Fairfield, Ward combined for three goals and four assists for a team-high seven points during that stretch.

Of his three goals, two were during critical fourth-quarter stretches in both games. Against Ohio State, he rolled around a Sean O’Sullivan screen at goal-line extended, stepped in and shot from seven yards out, scoring to put Loyola up 7-5.

At Fairfield, Ward tied the game at 6-6, after Loyola had trailed 6-4, with his second goal of the game at 7:19, and he then assisted on Mike Sawyer’s eventual game-winner less than two minutes later.

Ward, who had one assist as a freshman last season, leads the Greyhounds with 17 assists this season, and he is third on the team with 23 points.

Runkel Honored For Third Time

Sophomore goalkeeper Jack Runkel was named the ECAC Defensive Player of the Week for the third time in five weeks on Monday after posting 12 saves and allowing just six goals against Fairfield.

Runkel, who took over as the Greyhounds’ starter in the fourth game of the season, is the only ECAC defender to be honored on more than one occasion this year, and along with Scott Ratliff and Reid Acton, Loyola defenders have earned the award in five of seven weeks.

In just under 500 minutes of action between the pipes this season, Runkel has played to a 7.10 goals against average and a .565 save percentage. He is sixth in Division I in goals against average and 14th in save percentage.

Defensive Unit Helping Out

While Jack Runkel has picked up three conference awards this year, much of the credit can also go to the defensive unit as a whole. Opponents have taken 216 total shots while Runkel has been in goal this year, but just 124 have been on goal.

In all, opponents have managed just 152 shots on goal against the Greyhounds this year. Loyola is holding opponents to a .260 shot percentage, 11th best in the nation.

Causing Miscues

Loyola’s defense is fourth in Division I in caused turnovers per game, averaging 9.7 a contest. Four Greyhounds – Scott Ratliff (2.1), Reid Acton (1.3), Joe Fletcher and Dylan Grimm (both 1.1) – are averaging more than one per game. Ratliff ranks 11th in Division I in the category.

Close Call

Loyola’s 8-7 victory on March 31 against Ohio State marked the first time this year that the Greyhounds have played a game decided by less than three goals. Previously, Loyola’s closest victory was 11-8 on March 3 at Bellarmine, and no other game was within five goals.

Ten Or More Streak Snapped

The Greyhounds had scored at least 11 goals in each of their first eight games of the 2012 season, marking the longest stretch of games with 10 or more goals they have put together since March 24-May 12, 2001. Ohio State, however, held Loyola to just eight goals.

New Feeling

Loyola was outshot for the first time this season against Ohio State, as the Buckeyes tallied 33 shots to the Greyhounds’ 27.

Ohio State, however, managed to put just 15 shots on goal, and goalkeeper Jack Runkel made saves on eight.

Loyola, meanwhile, had 20 shots on goal, a season-best 74-percent of its overall shots. Previously, Loyola had outshot opponents by a minimum of nine in the first eight games of the year.

Acton Draws Recognition

Junior defender Reid Acton was named the ECAC Defensive Player of the Week after recording five ground balls and a career-best five caused turnovers against Ohio State.

Acton’s primary marking responsibility against the Buckeyes was leading scorer Logan Schuss who entered the game averaging 3+ goals and 4+ points per game. Acton limited him to two goals and an assist, and his final goal came with just nine seconds left and Loyola leading by three.

Big Runs

Loyola used runs of three-plus goals at important junctures of its first 10 games, helping the Greyhounds to wins each time. In all, Loyola has scored three or more in a row on 20 occasions this season.

Loyola used four three-goal runs against Duke, including one three-goal streak that put Loyola up 4-1 at the beginning of the second quarter. The Greyhounds never trailed after that initial three-goal run and extended their lead to 13-5 after its fourth three-goal spurt of the game.

The Greyhounds had their longest run in almost two years against Air Force, scoring 10 in a row to open the second half. The last time Loyola scored 10 or more in a row was on March 20, 2010, when it had 14 straight against Air Force.

Loyola then used a 6-0 run to break a 5-5 tie early in the third quarter with Georgetown on the way to a 11-6 victory.

The Greyhounds then scored seven in a row on the back end of a 10-1 run last Saturday at UMBC, and after falling behind 3-2 in the second quarter against Ohio State, the Greyhounds strung together four in a row to go ahead 6-3 by the end of the third quarter.

At Fairfield, Loyola scored the final four goals of the game to rally from a 6-4 deficit to win 8-6.

On The Flip Side

Conversely, the Greyhounds have allowed a run of three or more goals just five times this year, with the most recent coming when Fairfield scored five unanswered. Only the Stags (five) and Air Force (four) have scored more than three in a row this year.

Every time an opponent has logged those runs, Loyola has answered in kind with a run of 4-0 or better.

Lusby, Ratliff Join Tewaaraton Watch List

Loyola’s Eric Lusby and Scott Ratliff were named to the Tewaaraton Award Watch List, joining fellow Greyhound Mike Sawyer who was named to the group before the season.

Lusby is second on the team with 27 goals and 35 points, while Ratliff paces the team in caused turnovers with 17, and his 39 ground balls are tied for the team lead.

Second-Half Success

Loyola continued a trend of strong second-half play this season by outscoring Fairfield, 4-2, in the fourth quarter

The Greyhounds have now outscored opponents 37-12 in the third quarters of games and 67-33 overall this year in the second half.

The second-half scoring continues a trend from the last two seasons. Last year, Loyola outscored opponents, 69-52, after halftime (including two overtime goals), and 77-56 two years ago.

Lusby Matches Career-High

Eric Lusby scored three times during Loyola’s second half run and finished the Georgetown game with five goals, matching his career-high set on March 3 at Bellarmine. He followed that with his fifth hat trick of the season, scoring three at UMBC.

Lusby has scored at least one goal in each of Loyola’s eight games this season. The graduate student returned to game action in the season-opener after missing all but two games of the 2011 season. Now a graduate student, Lusby tore his right ACL in the 2010 NCAA First Round game against Cornell. He attempted to come back last year, but he saw limited action against Navy and Towson and was shut down to rehab the injury for the remainder of the season.

Lusby burst back onto the scene against Delaware, scoring the Greyhounds’ first goal of the game on an extra-man opportunity, and the 2010 All-ECAC First Team member tallied three more in the second half.

Lusby reset his career-high at Bellarmine, tallying five goals in the victory to go with one assist, and added two more at Michigan.

Through Loyola’s first eight games, Lusby is second on the team with 27 goals and 35 points.

Sawyer, Runkel Honored Again

For the second time this season, Mike Sawyer and Jack Runkel earned ECAC Offensive and Defensive Player of the Week honors on the same day, as the pair was honored on Monday following the Greyhounds’ wins over Georgetown and UMBC.

Sawyer scored three goals against the Hoyas, and he then scored four-straight Loyola goals and finished with five at UMBC. Sawyer also matched his career-best with two assists against the Retrievers.

Runkel paced the Loyola defense in the two games, playing to a 5.50 goals against average. He made a career-best 13 saves in the win over UMBC.

Toomey Wins 50th

Head coach Charley Toomey earned his 50th-career win Wednesday, March 7, as Loyola beat Michigan, 15-8.

Toomey, who is in his seventh season, has led Loyola to eight-plus wins in each of the last three seasons and has had the Greyhounds finish .500 or better in all seven seasons since coming to the Evergreen campus.

Sawyer Shows Same Form

Mike Sawyer has picked up where he left off a year ago, leading the team with 29 goals and 36 points through the first eight games. Sawyer led Loyola last season with 31 goals and 38 points.

Sawyer tied a then-career-high with five goals in the team’s, 15-8, win at Michigan, before scoring a new personal-best six goals against Duke.

After scoring five goals against UMBC, he now has 16 career multi-goal games and the 19 multi-point effort of his tenure at Loyola.

Before the season, Sawyer was named to the Preseason All-ECAC Team and was named to the Face-Off Yearbook Preseason All-America Honorable Mention. He also was named to the Tewaaraton Award Watch List.

Ratliff Honored For Second Time

Loyola long-stick midfielder Scott Ratliff was named the ECAC Co-Specialist of the Week on March 19 after turning in impressive numbers in a win over Air Force. Ratliff scored twice and had an assist while picking up seven ground balls against the Falcons. Earlier this season, Ratliff earned ECAC Defensive Player of the Week laurels after the Greyhounds’ opener against Delaware.

Ratliff is currently sixth among active long poles in career scoring. He has seven goals and five assists for 12 points. This year, he has three goals and two assists, as well as a team-leading 32 ground balls.

Bonitatibus, Runkel Both Win First Starts

Junior Michael Bonitatibus made his first collegiate start in goal for the Greyhounds against Delaware after having played less than two minutes prior to this season.

Bonitatibus, who played 65 seconds in his collegiate debut last year at Duke, made seven saves for the Greyhounds and allowed just eight goals. He also picked up five ground balls and caused two turnovers.

Bonitatibus became the first Loyola goalkeeper to win his starting debut in nearly 11 years. The last was Mark Bloomquist who also defeated Delaware, 8-7, on February 24, 2001.

Jack Runkel made his first career start against Michigan and also won his initial outing as a starter. He tallied five saves against the Wolverines, and he then posted a career-high 12 against Duke.

Record At Ridley

After going 4-1 at Ridley Athletic Complex last season, the Greyhounds have opened their third year at the stadium with six wins at home. Loyola is now 14-3 all-time at Ridley.

What’s Next

The Greyhounds wrap up their three-game road trip with an excursion on April 21 to Geneva, N.Y., where they will wrap up ECAC play with a 12 noon game at Hobart.

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Ravens release 2012 preseason schedule

Posted on 04 April 2012 by WNST Staff

PRESS RELEASE

A nationally-televised game against the Detroit Lions at M&T Bank Stadium highlights the Baltimore Ravens’ 2012 preseason schedule.

In the preseason home opener, the Ravens will host the Lions on Friday, Aug. 17, at 8 p.m. in a game broadcast by FOX-TV. This marks the third preseason meeting between the teams, with Baltimore owning a 2-0 series advantage.

The Ravens open preseason play at Atlanta on Thursday, Aug. 9. Baltimore holds a 5-3 preseason series edge over the Falcons, including last year’s 21-7 victory at the Georgia Dome. The Ravens have played six of the eight preseason contests in Atlanta.

Following their game against Detroit, the Ravens will host Jacksonville on Thursday, Aug. 23, in their first-ever preseason matchup against the Jaguars.

Baltimore closes out its preseason schedule at St. Louis on Thursday, Aug. 30. This will mark the Ravens’ third all-time preseason game against the Rams – all of which have been scheduled in St. Louis.

Two of the Ravens’ four preseason opponents – Atlanta and Detroit – earned playoff berths during the 2011 campaign. Baltimore is 38-25 all time in preseason play. Under head coach John Harbaugh (2008-11), the Ravens have compiled an 11-5 record in the preseason.

2012 Ravens Preseason Schedule

Thursday, Aug. 9 at Atlanta Falcons

Friday, Aug. 17 vs. Detroit Lions (FOX-TV National, 8 p.m.)

Thursday, Aug. 23 vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

Thursday, Aug. 30 at St. Louis Rams

(Times for three of the Ravens’ preseason games will be determined at a later date.)

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Loyola Looks to Stay Perfect Saturday Against Ohio State

Posted on 31 March 2012 by WNST Staff

Opponent Ohio State Buckeyes
Date Saturday, March 31, 2012
Time 1:00 p.m.
Location Baltimore, Md. | Ridley Athletic Complex
TV | Radio Hounds Unleashed
Series Record Loyola leads, 5-0
Last Meeting Loyola 12, Ohio State 9 – April 2, 2011 at Ohio State

Game Data

Loyola University Maryland returns to Ridley Athletic Complex to start a stretch of four-straight ECAC Lacrosse League games. The Greyhounds take on Ohio State University at 1 o’clock on Saturday, March 31.

Series History

Loyola and the Buckeyes will be meeting for the sixth time in series history and third time as ECAC opponents. The Greyhounds have won all five prior meetings, although the last two have come by just five combined goals.

The Greyhounds led last year’s contest 9-4 when Patrick Fanshaw scored a man-up goal in transition off a Josh Hawkins assist with 5:17 to go in the third quarter, but Ohio State scored five of the next six goals to pull within a score, 10-9, on Tyler Fredericks’ tally with 3:57 left in regulation.

Mike Sawyer and Chris Palmer, however, scored after that for Loyola, and the Greyhounds held off the Buckeyes for an 11-9 victory in Columbus. Chris Palmer finished with five goals, and Matt Langan had three goals and two assists. Hawkins scored a goal and had two assists, all coming in transition.

In The Polls

Loyola moved up to No. 4 in the USILA Coaches’ Poll this week, its highest ranking since the Greyhounds checked in at third in the April 1, 2002, poll with a 7-0 record after downing Towson, 15-7. The Greyhounds held steady at No. 5 in the Nike/Inside Lacrosse media rankings.

Ohio State is receiving votes in the Inside Lacrosse poll.

Ten Or More

The Greyhounds have scored at least 11 goals in each of their first eight games of the 2012 season, marking the longest stretch of games with 10 or more goals they have put together since March 24-May 12, 2001. The Greyhounds went 7-2 during that 2001 stretch where they averaged 14 goals per game. That team was coached by Dave Cottle who will be the color analyst on Loyola’s broadcast Saturday.

The last time Loyola opened the season with seven or more games with 10-plus goals was the 1995 season when they reeled off 14 or more before scoring five in an NCAA game.

The Only Ones

Loyola is the only team to score 10 or more goals in every game of this season throughout all of NCAA Division I.

As of Monday, the Greyhounds were tied for fifth in Division I with a 13 goals per game average.

Topping Out

Loyola’s success on offense this year has been well complemented by the Greyhounds’ defense. In addition to offense being tied for fifth in Division I in goals per game, Loyola’s defense is fifth with 7.13 goals allowed per contest.

The Greyhounds lead Division I through Monday in scoring margin, outscoring opponents by an average of 5.88 goals per game, 0.59 more than second-place Cornell.

Sharing The Rock

No Loyola player has more than 13 assists (Justin Ward) through eight games, but nine players have at least four assists, and 12 have two or more. In addition to Ward’s 13, Davis Butts, Eric Lusby and Sean O’Sullivan have eight assists, Mike Sawyer has seven, Chris Layne and Nikko Pontrello have five and J.P. Dalton and Pat Byrnes have four each.

With 72 assists this season, the Greyhounds lead Division I with 9.0 per game.

Eleven of Loyola’s 13 goals last Saturday night at UMBC came with assists.

Already Outpacing Last Year

This year’s team has already eclipsed last year’s total of 62 assists in just eight games. Also, with 104 goals, the 2012 Greyhounds are six short of matching the total put up last year.

Big Runs

Loyola used runs of three-plus goals at important junctures of its first eight games, helping the Greyhounds to wins each time. In all, Loyola has scored three or more in a row on 17 occasions this season.

Loyola used four three-goal runs against Duke, including one three-goal streak that put Loyola up 4-1 at the beginning of the second quarter. The Greyhounds never trailed after that initial three-goal run and extended their lead to 13-5 after its fourth three-goal spurt of the game.

The Greyhounds had their longest run in almost two years against Air Force, scoring 10 in a row to open the second half. The last time Loyola scored 10 or more in a row was on March 20, 2010, when it had 14 straight against Air Force.

Loyola then used a 6-0 run to break a 5-5 tie early in the third quarter with Georgetown on the way to a 11-6 victory.

The Greyhounds then scored seven in a row on the back end of a 10-1 run last Saturday at UMBC.

Second-Half Success

Loyola continued a trend of strong second-half play this season by outscoring UMBC, 6-1, after halftime after not allowing the Retrievers a goal until 11:25 was left on the fourth-quarter clock.

The Greyhounds have now outscored opponents 34-10 in the third quarters of games and 58-25 overall this year in the second half.

The second-half scoring continues a trend from the last two seasons. Last year, Loyola outscored opponents, 69-52, after halftime (including two overtime goals), and 77-56 two years ago.

Lusby Matches Career-High

Eric Lusby scored three times during Loyola’s second half run and finished the Georgetown game with five goals, matching his career-high set on March 3 at Bellarmine. He followed that with his fifth hat trick of the season, scoring three at UMBC.

Lusby has scored at least one goal in each of Loyola’s eight games this season. The graduate student returned to game action in the season-opener after missing all but two games of the 2011 season. Now a graduate student, Lusby tore his right ACL in the 2010 NCAA First Round game against Cornell. He attempted to come back last year, but he saw limited action against Navy and Towson and was shut down to rehab the injury for the remainder of the season.

Lusby burst back onto the scene against Delaware, scoring the Greyhounds’ first goal of the game on an extra-man opportunity, and the 2010 All-ECAC First Team member tallied three more in the second half.

Lusby reset his career-high at Bellarmine, tallying five goals in the victory to go with one assist, and added two more at Michigan.

Through Loyola’s first eight games, Lusby is second on the team with 24 goals and 36 points.

Sawyer, Runkel Honored Again

For the second time this season, Mike Sawyer and Jack Runkel earned ECAC Offensive and Defensive Player of the Week honors on the same day, as the pair was honored on Monday following the Greyhounds’ wins over Georgetown and UMBC.

Sawyer scored three goals against the Hoyas, and he then scored four-straight Loyola goals and finished with five at UMBC. Sawyer also matched his career-best with two assists against the Retrievers.

Runkel paced the Loyola defense in the two games, playing to a 5.50 goals against average. He made a career-best 13 saves in the win over UMBC.

Shot Advantage

Loyola has outshot its opponents in every game this season by a minimum of nine. The game against Duke (37-28) is the only time this season a Greyhounds’ opponent has been within 10 shots of Loyola.

In all, the Greyhounds have taken 358 shots while holding opponents to 202.

Second Midfield Scoring

All three members of Loyola’s second midfield unit scored at least one goal against Air Force, and the unit combined for three goals and two assists. Pat Byrnes led the way with a goal and a career-best two assists. J.P. Dalton and Phil Dobson each added goals of their own.

This season, all three members of the second line have five goals, while Byrnes and Dalton each have four assists. Dobson recorded the first two assists of his collegiate career last Saturday against UMBC. The unit has already scored more goals than it did last year when it had 10 goals and two assists during the season.

Toomey Wins 50th

Head coach Charley Toomey earned his 50th-career win Wednesday, March 7, as Loyola beat Michigan, 15-8.

Toomey, who is in his seventh season, has led Loyola to eight-plus wins in each of the last three seasons and has had the Greyhounds finish .500 or better in all seven seasons since coming to the Evergreen campus.

Sawyer Shows Same Form

Mike Sawyer has picked up where he left off a year ago, leading the team with 29 goals and 36 points through the first eight games. Sawyer led Loyola last season with 31 goals and 36 points.

Sawyer tied a then-career-high with five goals in the team’s, 15-8, win at Michigan, before scoring a new personal-best six goals against Duke.

After scoring five goals against UMBC, he now has 16 career multi-goal games and the 19 multi-point effort of his tenure at Loyola.

Before the season, Sawyer was named to the Preseason All-ECAC Team and was named to the Face-Off Yearbook Preseason All-America Honorable Mention.

Dominant At The ‘X’

In his first year as the Greyhounds’ primary face-off man, senior J.P. Dalton has continued Loyola’s tradition of excellence at the ‘X’.

Through eight games, Dalton ranks eighth nationally in face-off percentage, winning restarts at a .619 clip (112-of-181). As a unit, the Greyhounds entered the week third-best in the nation at .611.

Dalton is second on the team with 34 ground balls, while one of his primary wings, Scott Ratliff leads the team with 37. Josh Hawkins, who returned from injury to make his season-debut on March 10 against Duke, has 19 in four games, and Pat Laconi has 13. Davis Butts has also seen time on the wing and has 20 ground balls this season.

Ward Dishes Five

Justin Ward played the role of feeder in Loyola’s 13-6 win over Towson, finishing the game with five assists. Just one week previously, the sophomore recorded his first collegiate assist against Delaware.

Ward became the first Loyola player to record five or more assists since Shane Koppens had six in a March 10, 2009, win over Bryant.

Scoring In Two Straight

Loyola posted 13 goals in back-to-back games to open the season, marking the first time since April 2007 that the Greyhounds scored 13 or more in two games in a row.

The last time it happened, Loyola defeated Fairfield, 19-2, on April 21, 2007, and Hobart, 17-10, on April 28.

Through just two games, the Greyhounds rank eighth in NCAA Division I in goals per game (13.0).

Ratliff Honored For Second Time

Loyola long-stick midfielder Scott Ratliff was named the ECAC Co-Specialist of the Week on Monday after turning in impressive numbers in last Saturday’s win over Air Force. Ratliff scored twice and had an assist while picking up seven ground balls against the Falcons.

Earlier this season, Ratliff earned ECAC Defensive Player of the Week laurels after the Greyhounds’ opener against Delaware.

Ratliff is currently sixth among active long poles in career scoring. He has seven goals and five assists for 12 points. This year, he has three goals and two assists, as well as a team-leading 32 ground balls.

Sawyer, Runkel Earns ECAC Honors

Mike Sawyer and Jack Runkel were honored as ECAC Lacrosse Offensive and Defensive Player of the Week on March 12 following wins at Michigan and against Duke.

Sawyer scored 11 goals and had 14 points, setting career highs in both categories. He scored five goals and had six points in Michigan’s first-ever home game, before breaking those personal records with six goals and eight points in a win over Duke. He also picked up a career-high six ground balls, finishing the week with nine ground balls.

Runkel made the first two starts of his collegiate career, posting an 8.00 goals-against average and .515 save percentage to help the Greyhounds in two wins. Playing less than three minutes between the pipes as a freshman last season, he started the Michigan game and held the Wolverines to eight goals, while making five saves. He then made a career-high 12 saves against a Duke team that has played in the last five Final Fours.

Bonitatibus, Runkel Both Win First Starts

Junior Michael Bonitatibus made his first collegiate start in goal for the Greyhounds against Delaware after having played less than two minutes prior to this season.

Bonitatibus, who played 65 seconds in his collegiate debut last year at Duke, made seven saves for the Greyhounds and allowed just eight goals. He also picked up five ground balls and caused two turnovers.

Bonitatibus became the first Loyola goalkeeper to win his starting debut in nearly 11 years. The last was Mark Bloomquist who also defeated Delaware, 8-7, on February 24, 2001.

Jack Runkel made his first career start against Michigan and also won his initial outing as a starter. He tallied five saves against the Wolverines, and he then posted a career-high 12 against Duke.

Record At Ridley

After going 4-1 at Ridley Athletic Complex last season, the Greyhounds have opened their third year at the stadium with five wins at home. Loyola is now 13-3 all-time at Ridley.

What’s Next

The Greyhounds head on the road for their next three games, all contests at ECAC Lacrosse League opponents, starting with an April 7 date at Fairfield University.

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UMBC Hopes To Pull Another Stunner Saturday Against Loyola

Posted on 24 March 2012 by WNST Staff

The UMBC men’s lacrosse team (2-3) welcomes Loyola back to UMBC Stadium for the first time since 2004 on Saturday, March 24.  The Retrievers had a rare week off after the March 10 setback to No. 2 Johns Hopkins, while the fifth-ranked Greyhounds defeated No. 11 Duke on the same day and have improved to 7-0 with subsequent wins over Air Force and Georgetown.

The opening face-off is scheduled to take place at 7:00 p.m. Game coverage includes streaming on www.umbcretrievers.tv.

SCOUTING THE RETRIEVERS

The Retrievers had the week off after facing a pair of top five teams (No. 4 Maryland, No. 2 Johns Hopkins) in a five-day span. UMBC will face its
third consecutive top-ten team and fourth straight top-20 team when they entertain No. 5 Loyola.

Junior attackman Scott Jones has now scored goals in 10 consecutive games. He has 25 goals in that span which began vs. Binghamton on April 9, 2011. As of March 12, Jones was 30th in the nation with 2.4 goals per game

Junior goalkeeper Adam Cohen is 10th in the country with 11.2 saves per contest (as of March 12).

Junior attackman Joe Lustgarten recorded a career-high three assists against Johns Hopkins on March 10.

UMBC has outscored the opposition, 16-9, in fourth quarter scoring this season.

The Retrievers’ strength of schedule is currently fourth in the nation. For the second consecutive week, UMBC is receiving votes in both the USILA poll and the Nike/Inside Lacrosse poll.

SCOUTING THE GREYHOUNDS

Loyola held the Air Force Academy scoreless for over 31 minutes, and the Greyhounds used a 10-0 run to down the Falcons, 15-8, last Saturday
afternoon in ECAC Lacrosse League action at Ridley Athletic Complex. They defeated Georgetown, 11-6, at home on Wednesday evening.

The Greyhounds are currently ranked No. 5 in both the USILA and Nike/Inside Lacrosse polls.

J.P. Dalton was critical for the Greyhounds in the comeback over AFA, winning 18-of-26 face-offs, 10-of-13 in the second half. He also had five
ground balls. Loyola trailed, 7-4, at the half.  Dalton is winning 62.8 percent in the circle in 2012.

JR A Mike Sawyer leads the explosive Greyhound offense with 24 goals and 29 total points. Grad student A Eric Lusby, who scored five goals vs.
Georgetown, is second on the team with 21 goals, and he is tied for the team lead with 29 points.

Loyola’s most notable victory was the 13-8 triumph over No. 11 Duke at Ridley Athletic Complex on March 10.  Sawyer scored six times in the game and Lusby added three goals and two assists.

THE SERIES

This will be the 30th meeting between UMBC and Loyola, although it will be the first meeting since a 2005 contest at Loyola. The teams met every year from 1970-1996, then met in back-to-back years in both 2004 and 2005. UMBC leads the all-time series, 16-13 and won both the 2004 (13-7) and 2005 (9-8, 2ot) contests. The 2004 Retriever victory snapped a nine-game losing streak to the Hounds.

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Loyola Puts Undefeated Record On Line Saturday At UMBC

Posted on 24 March 2012 by WNST Staff

Opponent UMBC Retrievers
Date Saturday, March 24, 2012
Time 7:00 p.m.
Location Catonsville, Md. | UMBC Stadium
TV | Radio UMBC Webcasting
Series Record UMBC leads, 16-13
Last Meeting UMBC 9, Loyola 8 (2OT) – April 19, 2005 at Loyola

Game Data

Loyola University Maryland will make the short trip across town to take on the UMBC Retrievers on Saturday night in Catonsville, Md. The game will be held at UMBC Stadium at 7 o’clock

Series History

UMBC and Loyola will meet for the 30th time in series history when the teams take the field on Saturday with the Retrievers holding a 16-13 advantage in the previous 29 contests.

The teams will play for the first time during the regular-season since 2005, although they have played for several years in preseason exhibitions.

UMBC prevailed, 9-8, in double overtime the last time the schools met on April 19, 2005, at Loyola’s Diane Geppi-Aikens Field.

In The Polls

Loyola checks in at No. 5 in the USILA Coaches’ Poll for the second week in a row, and the Greyhounds moved up to fifth in the Nike/Inside Lacrosse Media Rankings.

UMBC, meanwhile, is receiving votes in both polls.

Ten Or More

The Greyhounds have scored at least 11 goals in each of their first seven games of the 2012 season, marking the longest stretch of games with 10 or more goals they have put together since March 31-May 5, 2001. The Greyhounds went 5-2 during that 2001 stretch where they averaged 14.9 goals per game.

The last time Loyola opened the season with seven or more games with 10-plus goals was the 2000 season when they reeled off 12 or more in seven-straight wins.

The Only Ones

Loyola is the only team to score 10 or more goals in its first seven games of this season throughout all of NCAA Division I.

As of Monday, the Greyhounds were ranked fifth in Division I with a 13.33 goals per game average.

Second-Half Success

Following its trend from the season, Loyola used a 6-0 run that covered more than 15 minutes of action during the third and fourth quarters Wednesday against Georgetown, en route to an 11-6 victory. The run came days after Loyola reeled off 10-straight goals over the first 28 minutes, 35 seconds of the second half Saturday against Air Force to dispense of a 7-4 halftime deficit.

The Greyhounds have now outscored opponents 30-10 in the third quarters of games and 52-5 overall this year in the second half.

The second-half scoring continues a trend from the last two seasons. Last year, Loyola outscored opponents, 69-52, after halftime (including two overtime goals), and 77-56 two years ago.

Getting Defensive, Too

Loyola’s offense hasn’t been the only unit to put up good numbers in the first part of the 2012 season. The Greyhounds’ defense has allowed no more than eight goals in a game this season, in fact they have allowed eight exactly to five teams.

Through seven games, the Greyhounds’ defense is allowing an average of 7.43 goals per game to rank eighth in Division I in scoring defense.

Lusby Matches Career-High

Eric Lusby scored three times during Loyola’s second half run and finished the Georgetown game with five goals, matching his career-high set on March 3 at Bellarmine.

Lusby has scored at least one goal in each of Loyola’s seven games this season and has four hat tricks. The graduate student returned to game action in the season-opener after missing all but two games of the 2011 season. Now a graduate student, Lusby tore his right ACL in the 2010 NCAA First Round game against Cornell. He attempted to come back last year, but he saw limited action against Navy and Towson and was shut down to rehab the injury for the remainder of the season.

Lusby burst back onto the scene against Delaware, scoring the Greyhounds’ first goal of the game on an extra-man opportunity, and the 2010 All-ECAC First Team member tallied three more in the second half.

Lusby reset his career-high at Bellarmine, tallying five goals in the victory to go with one assist, and added two more at Michigan.

Through Loyola’s first seven games, Lusby is second on the team with 21 goals, and he is tied for the team lead with 29 points.

Shot Advantage

Loyola has outshot its opponents in every game this season by a minimum of nine. The game against Duke (37-28) is the only time this season a Greyhounds’ opponent has been within 10 shots of Loyola.

In all, the Greyhounds have taken 312 shots while holding opponents to 171.

Ratliff Honored For Second Time

Loyola long-stick midfielder Scott Ratliff was named the ECAC Co-Specialist of the Week on Monday after turning in impressive numbers in last Saturday’s win over Air Force. Ratliff scored twice and had an assist while picking up seven ground balls against the Falcons.

Earlier this season, Ratliff earned ECAC Defensive Player of the Week laurels after the Greyhounds’ opener against Delaware.

Ratliff is currently sixth among active long poles in career scoring. He has seven goals and five assists for 12 points. This year, he has three goals and two assists, as well as a team-leading 32 ground balls.

Butts Dishes Four

Davis Butts did not score a goal against Air Force, but he was a key component in the Greyhounds matching their season-high with 15 goals. He posted a career-high four assists in the game, eclipsing his previous best of two.

Butts’ game was the second this season where a Loyola player tallied four or more assists. Justin Ward had five against Towson.

Second Midfield Scoring

All three members of Loyola’s second midfield unit scored at least one goal against Air Force, and the unit combined for three goals and two assists. Pat Byrnes led the way with a goal and a career-best two assists. J.P. Dalton and Phil Dobson each added goals of their own.

This season, the trio has combined for 14 goals and five assists. Byrnes and Dobson each have five goals, and Dalton has four. Byrnes, meanwhile, has three assists, and Dalton has tallied a pair. The unit has already scored more goals than it did last year when it had 10 goals and two assists during the season.

On The Ground

Loyola picked up a season-high 45 ground balls against Air Force, grabbing 16 more than the Falcons. Scott Ratliff and Reid Acton led the way with seven each, while J.P. Dalton had six.

Josh Hawkins grabbed five ground balls for the second game in a row since returning from an injury that held him out of Loyola’s first four games of the year.

Sharing The Rock

No Loyola player has more than 11 assists (Justin Ward) through seven games, but seven players have at least four assists, and 12 have two or more. In addition to Ward’s 1, Eric Lusby has eight assists, Davis Butts eight, Sean O’Sullivan seven and Mike Sawyer five.

Man-Up Success

Entering the week, Loyola led the nation in extra-man success this season, converting on 75-percent (12-of-16) man-up opportunities in six games. After going 1-of-5 against Georgetown, the Greyhounds’ percentage dipped slightly to .619, but four players – Eric Lusby (4), Mike Sawyer (4), Davis Butts (2) and Sean O’Sullivan (2) – have scored two or more man-up goals this year.

Last season, the Greyhounds extra-man unit was seventh nationally with a .420 (21-of-50) conversion percentage in 2011.

Toomey Wins 50th

Head coach Charley Toomey earned his 50th-career win Wednesday, March 7, as Loyola beat Michigan, 15-8.

Toomey, who is in his seventh season, has led Loyola to eight-plus wins in each of the last three seasons and has had the Greyhounds finish .500 or better in all seven seasons since coming to the Evergreen campus.

Big Runs

Loyola used runs of three-plus goals at important junctures of its first six games, helping the Greyhounds to wins each time. They scored five-straight in the second quarter against Delaware to take a 5-3 lead and never trailed again in the game, and the Greyhounds turned a 6-2 advantage against Towson into an 11-2 lead with a run of five-straight that stretched from the second quarter to the third quarter.

Loyola rattled off four-straight against Bellarmine in the fourth quarter, turning a 7-6 advantage into an 11-6 lead with less than six minutes to go, and it scored eight-straight against Michigan between the first and second quarters to claim an 8-1 lead.

Loyola used four three-goal runs against Duke, including one three-goal streak that put Loyola up 4-1 at the beginning of the second quarter. The Greyhounds never trailed after that initial three-goal run and extended their lead to 13-5 after its fourth three-goal spurt of the game.

The Greyhounds had their longest run in almost two years against Air Force, scoring 10 in a row to open the second half. The last time Loyola scored 10 or more in a row was on March 20, 2010, when it had 14 straight against Air Force.

Loyola then used a 6-0 run to break a 5-5 tie early in the third quarter with Georgetown on the way to a 11-6 victory.

Sawyer Shows Same Form

Mike Sawyer has picked up where he left off a year ago, leading the team with 24 goals and 29 points through the first seven games. Sawyer led Loyola last season with 31 goals and 36 points.

Sawyer tied a then-career-high with five goals in the team’s, 15-8, win at Michigan, before scoring a new personal-best six goals against Duke.

After scoring three goals against Air Force, he now has 15 career multi-goal games and the 18 multi-point effort of his tenure at Loyola.

Before the season, Sawyer was named to the Preseason All-ECAC Team and was named to the Face-Off Yearbook Preseason All-America Honorable Mention.

Dominant At The ‘X’

In his first year as the Greyhounds’ primary face-off man, senior J.P. Dalton has continued Loyola’s tradition of excellence at the ‘X’.

Through six games, Dalton ranks ninth nationally in face-off percentage, winning restarts at a .609 clip (98-of-161). As a unit, the Greyhounds entered the week fifth-best in the nation at .608.

Dalton is second on the team with 32 ground balls, while one of his primary wings, Scott Ratliff leads the team with 33. Josh Hawkins, who returned from injury to make his season-debut on March 10 against Duke, has 10 in two games, and Pat Laconi has 11. Davis Butts has also seen time on the wing and has 16 ground balls this season.

Ward Dishes Five

Justin Ward played the role of feeder in Loyola’s 13-6 win over Towson, finishing the game with five assists. Just one week previously, the sophomore recorded his first collegiate assist against Delaware.

Ward became the first Loyola player to record five or more assists since Shane Koppens had six in a March 10, 2009, win over Bryant.

Scoring In Two Straight

Loyola posted 13 goals in back-to-back games to open the season, marking the first time since April 2007 that the Greyhounds scored 13 or more in two games in a row.

The last time it happened, Loyola defeated Fairfield, 19-2, on April 21, 2007, and Hobart, 17-10, on April 28.

Through just two games, the Greyhounds rank eighth in NCAA Division I in goals per game (13.0).

Sawyer, Runkel Earns ECAC Honors

Mike Sawyer and Jack Runkel were honored as ECAC Lacrosse Offensive and Defensive Player of the Week on March 12 following wins at Michigan and against Duke.

Sawyer scored 11 goals and had 14 points, setting career highs in both categories. He scored five goals and had six points in Michigan’s first-ever home game, before breaking those personal records with six goals and eight points in a win over Duke. He also picked up a career-high six ground balls, finishing the week with nine ground balls.

Runkel made the first two starts of his collegiate career, posting an 8.00 goals-against average and .515 save percentage to help the Greyhounds in two wins. Playing less than three minutes between the pipes as a freshman last season, he started the Michigan game and held the Wolverines to eight goals, while making five saves. He then made a career-high 12 saves against a Duke team that has played in the last five Final Fours.

Bonitatibus, Runkel Both Win First Starts

Junior Michael Bonitatibus made his first collegiate start in goal for the Greyhounds against Delaware after having played less than two minutes prior to this season.

Bonitatibus, who played 65 seconds in his collegiate debut last year at Duke, made seven saves for the Greyhounds and allowed just eight goals. He also picked up five ground balls and caused two turnovers.

Bonitatibus became the first Loyola goalkeeper to win his starting debut in nearly 11 years. The last was Mark Bloomquist who also defeated Delaware, 8-7, on February 24, 2001.

Jack Runkel made his first career start against Michigan and also won his initial outing as a starter. He tallied five saves against the Wolverines, and he then posted a career-high 12 against Duke.

Record At Ridley

After going 4-1 at Ridley Athletic Complex last season, the Greyhounds have opened their third year at the stadium with five wins at home. Loyola is now 13-3 all-time at Ridley.

What’s Next

Loyola moves back to ECAC Lacrosse League action on Saturday, March 31, when it hosts Ohio State University at 1 o’clock. It is the first of four straight ECAC games, but the only one that will be played at home.

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Broncos SB Odds Improve, Ravens Drop After Start of Free Agency

Posted on 19 March 2012 by WNST Staff

Peyton Manning Odds

Peyton Manning – Total Passing Yards in the 2012 Regular Season? 

Over/Under                    4000    

Peyton Manning – Total TD Passes in the 2012 Regular Season?       

Over/Under                    28½

Peyton Manning – Completion % in the 2012 Regular Season?          

Over/Under                    65%

Peyton Manning – Total Interceptions in the 2012 Regular Season?   

Over/Under                    16½

Peyton Manning – Will his first pass of the season be complete, incomplete, or an Interception?

Complete                      -180     (5/9)

Incomplete                    +150     (3/2)

Interception                   +1000   (10/1)

Peyton Manning – Will he win 2012 NFL MVP?           

Yes                              7/1       

Peyton Manning – Will he win 2012 Comeback Player of the Year?   

Yes                              1/1       

Tim Tebow Odds

Tim Tebow – Which team will he be on for Week 1 of the Regular Season?     

Jacksonville Jaguars                  3/2

Denver Broncos                         7/4

Miami Dolphins                          7/4

New England Patriots                 7/1

Cleveland Browns                       12/1

Tim Tebow – Will he start as a QB in the NFL Week 1 of the Regular Season?          

Yes                  EVEN  

No                    -140     

Broncos Odds

Denver Broncos – Regular Season Wins         

Over                              10        

Will the Denver Broncos play against The New York Giants in the 2013 Super Bowl?           

Yes                              50/1     

Will the Denver Broncos win the AFC?

Yes                              6/1

Will the Denver Broncos win the AFC West?

Yes                              2/3

2013 SUPER BOWL XLVII ODDS  (odds current, 3/19/2012)                  (odds on 2/6/2012)

Green Bay Packers                                13/2                                          6/1

New England Patriots                             15/2                                          7/1

New Orleans Saints                               10/1                                          8/1

Denver Broncos                                     12/1                                          50/1

Houston Texans                                     12/1                                          12/1

San Francisco 49ers                              14/1                                          18/1

Baltimore Ravens                                   15/1                                          14/1

Philadelphia Eagles                                15/1                                          12/1

New York Giants                                    16/1                                          15/1

Pittsburgh Steelers                                18/1                                          12/1

Dallas Cowboys                                     20/1                                          18/1

San Diego Chargers                               22/1                                          16/1

Chicago Bears                                       25/1                                          30/1

Detroit Lions                                          25/1                                          18/1

Atlanta Falcons                                     28/1                                          22/1

New York Jets                                       30/1                                          16/1

Carolina Panthers                                  40/1                                          50/1

Cincinnati Bengals                                 40/1                                          40/1

Miami Dolphins                                      40/1                                          35/1

Seattle Seahawks                                  40/1                                          60/1

Arizona Cardinals                                   50/1                                          30/1

Kansas City Chiefs                                50/1                                          50/1

Oakland Raiders                                    50/1                                          50/1

Tennessee Titans                                   50/1                                          40/1

Washington Redskins                            50/1                                          60/1

Buffalo Bills                                           75/1                                          60/1

St. Louis Rams                                      75/1                                          75/1

Tampa Bay Buccaneers                         75/1                                          75/1

Indianapolis Colts                                   100/1                                        50/1

Jacksonville Jaguars                               100/1                                        100/1

Minnesota Vikings                                 100/1                                        75/1

Cleveland Browns                                   150/1                                        100/1

Courtesy of Bovada, (www.Bovada.lv,  Twitter: @BovadaLV).

“Our Super Bowl odds have been down for a couple weeks until we knew where Peyton would go since this signing would have such a huge impact on every team’s odds.  Denver who we had at 50-1 before we closed the odds have dropped to 12-1 and as I expected the public is taking them regardless as soon as we opened this morning.  We were a bit lucky that Denver came out of nowhere in the Manning Sweepstakes so not too many people bet them at 50-1.”

-Kevin Bradley, Bovada.lv Sportsbook Manager

 

 

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