Tag Archive | "greyhounds"

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Loyola remains at top spot in both weekly lacrosse polls

Posted on 01 April 2014 by WNST Staff

The Loyola Greyhounds were tested at Colgate this weekend, but ultimately held on for a 10-8 win to improve to 9-1 on the season. Thanks to their ninth straight victory the Hounds held on to the top spot in both of the weekly college lacrosse polls.

Maryland remained in the Top 5 in both polls thanks to a big 9-6 win over Virginia Sunday and Johns Hopkins dropped again after falling 13-9 to North Carolina-their third straight setback.

Here are the new weekly lacrosse polls, courtesy of NCAA.com. First the Inside Lacrosse Media Poll…

RANK NAME POINTS PREVIOUS
1 Loyola Maryland (16) 470 1
2 Cornell (8) 457 2
3 Duke 428 3
4 Maryland 411 4
5 North Carolina 384 5
6 Denver 366 6
7 Syracuse 322 9
8 Notre Dame 311 7
9 Virginia 298 8
10 Johns Hopkins 243 10
11 Bryant 231 12
12 Massachusetts 200 13
13 Penn 190 16
14 Yale 157 11
15 Fairfield 142 18
T16 Colgate 100 17
T16 Hofstra 100 19
18 Albany 67 15
19 Princeton 49 14
20 Army 45 NR

Dropped out: No. 20 Penn State.

Also receiving votes: Brown, Saint John’s, Lehigh, Drexel, Villanova, Towson, Mercer.

And now the USILA Coaches’ poll…

RANK NAME POINTS PREVIOUS
1 Loyola Maryland (8) 290 1
2 Cornell (5) 285 2
3 Duke (1) 266 3
4 Maryland (1) 258 4
5 North Carolina 245 5
6 Denver 228 6
7 Notre Dame 195 7
T8 Virginia 191 8
T8 Syracuse 191 10
10 Johns Hopkins 160 9
11 Massachusetts 129 14
12 Bryant 128 12
13 Fairfield 101 16
14 Yale 94 11
15 Penn 93 18
16 Albany 56 13
17 Princeton 54 15
18 Army 47 20
19 Colgate 41 19
20 Hofstra 31 NR

Dropped out:  No. 17 Penn State.

Also receiving votes: Lehigh, Drexel, Towson, Saint John’s, Penn State, Villanova.

 

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Loyola’s Runkel, Fletcher pick up weekly Patriot League honors again

Posted on 31 March 2014 by WNST Staff

Runkel, Fletcher Garner Patriot League Weekly Honors

CENTER VALLEY, Pa. – Loyola University Maryland seniors Jack Runkel and Joe Fletcher were named the Patriot League Goalkeeper and Defensive Player of the Week, respectively for the fifth and fourth times this season.

Runkel’s fifth weekly award matches the most weekly awards any player in the conference has earned in a single season, equaling the totals accumulated by a pair of U.S. Military Academy goalkeepers, Adam Fullerton and Tom Palesky, in 2008 and 2011, respectively. No player has won any Patriot League weekly award six times.

Fletcher’s fourth award is more than any other player in League history has earned Defensive Player of the Week honors. Nine players have previously received the honor four times.

Runkel made 12 saves on 20 shots on goal in a 10-8 win Saturday at then-No. 17 Colgate University to help the top-ranked Greyhounds move to 9-1 overall this year, 5-0 in the Patriot League. He posted four of the saves during the fourth quarter as Loyola led by no more than two.

Over Loyola’s last eight games, Runkel has a 5.93 goals against average. Overall this year, he has made saves on 60.7 percent of the shots on goal he’s faced, and he has a 7.24 goals against average.

Fletcher picked up seven ground balls and caused a turnover on Saturday against the Raiders, and he had primary marking responsibilities for Colgate’s leading scorer, Ryan Walsh. The Raiders junior attacker was held without a goal or assist, marking the first time in his 43 collegiate games that he has gone without a point.

This season, Fletcher leads Loyola’s close defensemen with 44 ground balls and 14 caused turnovers.

The Greyhounds are back in action on Saturday, April 5, when they travel to Annapolis, Md., for a 12 noon game at the U.S. Naval Academy in Patriot League play.

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Ward, Pontrello lead way as Loyola tops Colgate

Posted on 29 March 2014 by WNST Staff

Ward, Pontrello Spark Offense As No. 1 Loyola Tops No. 17 Colgate

HAMILTON, N.Y. – Justin Ward and Nikko Pontrello combined for five goals and nine total points, and top-ranked Loyola University Maryland defeated No. 17 Colgate University, 10-8, in Patriot League action on Saturday afternoon at Andy Kerr Stadium.

Ward scored two both of his goals in back-to-back fashion midway through the third quarter, and he had an assist on a 12-yard Matt Sawyer shot with 4:05 remaining that gave the Greyhounds (9-1, 5-0) a two-goal cushion.

Pontrello finished with three goals and an assist, scoring two of his in a span of two minutes, 42 seconds between the third and fourth quarters.

Loyola’s defense yielded 11 shots to the Raiders (7-3, 4-1) in the fourth quarter, but most came from 12 or more yards away. Goalkeeper Jack Runkel posted 12 saves in the victory, and the Greyhounds held Colgate’s leading scorer, Ryan Walsh, without a point for the first time in his career, a span of 42 prior games.

Pat Laconi had four ground balls and three caused turnovers, the last of each coming with less than 25 seconds to play, enabling the Greyhounds to run out the clock. Joe Fletcher had a team-best seven ground balls, and he had primary man-to-man marking responsibilities for Walsh.

The teams traded goals one-for-one in the first half with the Greyhounds never trailing, but Colgate tied the game at 4-4 heading into halftime as Kevin Boyle finished a transition opportunity for the Raiders following a Loyola turnover. He took a Brandon McCann pass and scored from just in front of the crease with 4.4 seconds left, tying the game for the fourth time.

Cameron Williams scored his second goal of the game to give Colgate its first lead 2:46 into the second half, running down the right alley for a shot.

Jeff Chase answered for Loyola, as he scored from 10 yards out after cutting left to right, knotting the game at 5-5 with 9:29 to play in the third quarter.

Chase’s goal sparked a 4-0 Loyola run that put the Greyhounds in front, 8-5. Sawyer wheeled around the crease and found Ward in front of him for a goal 43 seconds after Chase’s to put Loyola in front 6-5.

Ward then gave the Greyhounds their first multi-goal lead of the game at 6:02 following a Raiders turnover. Pontrello picked up a ground ball during a Colgate failed clear and fed it ahead to Ward who scored from close in on the left side.

Pontrello then pushed the advantage to 8-5 when he caught a Ward pass at goal-line extended left, dodged toward the crease and scored his second of the day at 2:31 in the third.

Colgate, however, got a pair of goals late in the third to make it a one-goal game once again.

Matt Clarkson scored one at 1:08, and then after a Greyhounds turnover, Tyler Rigo got his hands free on the right side for a goal with 16.4 seconds left in the third quarter, pulling the Raiders within one, 8-7.

Loyola quickly pushed its advantage back to two, however, in the fourth quarter. Graham Savio won the period’s opening faceoff to himself, ran into the box and got a shot past Colgate goalkeeper Brandon Burke, but it hit hard off the crossbar and rebounded in front of the crease.

Ryan Fournier collected the ground ball and fed Pontrello on the left side of the crease where he shot-faked and scored his third of the day 11 seconds into the final quarter of regulation.

Clarkson, however, scored quickly for Colgate, tallying his season-high third of the day 1:16 after Pontrello’s third.

The teams played to the one-goal game for nearly 10 minutes before Ward rolled from behind the cage and found Sawyer open 12 yards out up top, and Sawyer ripped a sidearm shot to put Loyola in front two, 10-8.

Colgate had the next possession after winning the faceoff, but it had no shots from inside 12 yards against the Greyhounds defense. The Raiders’ first three attempts went wide, and Runkel made a save on the fourth to gain possession again for Loyola.

At the end of the clear, Loyola drew a slashing call against Colgate, but the Greyhounds turned the ball over on the extra-man opportunity, giving the Raiders possession with 90 ticks left on the clock.

McCann sent a Raiders shot wide after a Colgate timeout, and Loyola called for a break in the action with 41 seconds remaining.

Eric Foote had the ball at the top of the box where Laconi stripped him with a check and picked up the ground ball. He cleared it to Ward and despite beind doubles in the corner, he found Brian Sherlock who ran out the clock with the ball in his stick.

In addition to Ward’s two goals and three assists and Pontrello’s three and one, Sawyer had a goal and an assist, while Chase, Sherlock, Brian Schultz and Kevin Ryan added goals.

Clarkson led Colgate with three goals, while Williams and Rigo had two apiece and McCann assisted on three first-half goals. Burke made 12 saves in goal.

Loyola continues its Patriot League road swing on Saturday, April 5, with a 12 noon game in Annapolis, Md., against the U.S. Naval Academy.

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#1 Loyola hits road to face Colgate Saturday

Posted on 29 March 2014 by WNST Staff

Game Information
Opponent Colgate Raiders
Date Saturday, March 29, 2014
Time 12:00 p.m.
Location Hamilton, N.Y. | Andy Kerr Stadium

 

Quick Hits About The ’Hounds

  • Loyola University Maryland opens a two-game Patriot League road trip on Saturday, March 29, when it travels to Hamilton, N.Y., to face Colgate University at 12 noon.
  • The Greyhounds, by virtue of a 21-4 win over Lafayette last Saturday, have scored 20 or more goals twice this season, marking the first time they have done so since the 1997 team scored 24 against Fairfield, 20 versus Towson and 21 in the NCAA First Round against Notre Dame. Earlier this year, Loyola beat Towson, 20-4.
  • Loyola’s 17-goal margin of victory over the Leopards was its largest since beating Fairfield 19-2 on April 21, 2007.
  • The Greyhounds had a 52-22 advantage in ground balls against Lafayette, the largest margin in the statistical category Loyola has posted since Charley Toomey became head coach in 2006. The previous high was 23 earlier this season at Holy Cross.
  • Nikko Pontrello has moved up to second in the country in goals per game (3.78) with his nation-leading 34 total.
  • Justin Ward is second in both assists per game (3.33) and total assists (32).

Last Time Out

  • Loyola’s starting attack of Nikko Pontrello, Brian Schultz and Justin Ward combined for 12 goals, and the Greyhounds defeated visiting Lafayette College, 21-4, last Saturday in Patriot League action.
  • Pontrello finished with five goals, while Schultz had four and Ward three. Ward led all players with seven points, chipping in four assists.
  • Nine Greyhounds in all scored goals against the Leopards as Brian Sherlock tallied three and two assists, while Romar Dennis had a pair along with one helper.
  • Led by Ward’s four and two each by Sherlock and Tyler Albrecht, 15 of the Greyhounds’ 21 goals were of the assisted variety.
  • Loyola’s 71.4 percent assist ratio matched its best of the season. The Greyhounds also assisted on the same percentage in a 14-7 win at Lehigh on March 1.
  • The Greyhounds won 18-of-29 faceoffs against Lafayette. Graham Savio was successful on 13-of-19, and Blake Burkhart made good on 5-of-8. Savio had a career-best 11 ground balls, as well as his first career assist.

Follow The Action    

  • Saturday’s game, and all non-televised Patriot League games, will be broadcast on the Patriot League Network. Additionally, all of Loyola’s non-televised home games will be available on the free HD network.
  • Log on to PatriotLeague.tv to watch the home games on your computer, web-enabled televisions and most mobile devices.

In The Polls    

  • Loyola moved up to the No. 1 spot in both the USILA coaches and Warrior/Inside Lacrosse media polls on Monday following its wins last week over Georgetown and Lafayette.
  • The Greyhounds have been ranked No. 1 at some point in each of the last three seasons, most recently in the first polls of the 2012 season.
  • Colgate checks in at 19th in the coaches rankings and 17th in the media version.

Series History    

  • Loyola and Colgate will meet for the first time when the teams take the first on Saturday. It is the second time this year (Holy Cross) that the Greyhounds have played an opponent for the first time.

Get To Ten    

  • Since Charley Toomey became head coach at Loyola in 2006, the Greyhounds have scored 10 or more goals on 63 occasions. After defeating the Leopards, 21-4, on Saturday, Loyola has won 80.9 percent of those games (51-12).

Since 2012    

  • Loyola has the best winning percentage in NCAA Division I men’s lacrosse since the start of the 2012 season. The Greyhounds are 37-7 during that stretch (17-1 in 2012, 11-5 in 2013 and 8-1 this season) for a .841 mark.
  • Only Duke has won more games (38) than Loyola during the run, but the Blue Devils are second to the Greyhounds in winning percentage by more than eight percent (38-12, .760).

Chart Toppers    

  • A pair of Greyhounds attackers are at or near the top of two offensive categories through games of Tuesday, March 25, in both total goals and assists.Nikko Pontrello paces Division I with 34 goals, while Justin Ward is second with 30 assists.
  • The duo is the No. 2 point-scoring tandem in the country with 39 each. Albany’s Lyle (48) and Miles (44) have a combined 92, 14 more than Pontrello and Ward

Pontrello Putting Up Points    

  • Nikko Pontrello had his ninth multi-goal game is as many contests to open the season on Saturday when he scored five against Lafayette. Through games of Monday, March 24, Pontrello leads the nation in total goals with 34.
  • He scored two in the season-opener at Virginia and then had three each against Penn State and Towson before scoring a career-high six goals at Holy Cross. He then tallied four at Lehigh, five against Duke and three at Georgetown.
  • Two of his goals have been game-winners in one-goal contests. Pontrello scored 19 seconds into overtime to give Loyola a 12-11 win at Penn State, and he then tallied one with 51.4 seconds left in regulation to push the Greyhounds past Georgetown, 10-9.
  • Pontrello leads the Greyhounds with 34 goals and is tied with Justin Ward for the team-lead with 39 points through nine games.
  • He leads the Patriot League and is second nationally in goals per game (3.78), while he is tied for first and 13th with Ward in points per game (4.33).

Stopping Shots    

  • After opening the season with a .214 save percentage in the opener at Virginia, Jack Runkel has played to a .649 mark, saving 87 out of 134 shots on goal he’s faced. In a six-game stretch  against Towson, Holy Cross, Lehigh, Duke and Army, Runkel made 61 saves and allowed just 26 goals (.701).
  • The senior goalkeeper, who earned 2012 NCAA Championships All-Tournament honors, has a goals against average of 7.14 this season and a cumulative saves percentage of .608 through nine games. He is fourth in the nation in saves percentage and sixth in goals against average.
  • In three years as a starter for the Greyhounds, Runkel has a 7.81 goals against average and .559 saves percentage; he is fifth in Loyola’s Division I history (since 1982) with 388 career saves. Runkel’s record between the pipes is 35-6. He is second in wins among active goalkeepers, trailing only Maryland’s Niko Amato who has 41 victories. Amato (as of Monday), however, Amato is a four-year starter, while Runkel did not start until early in his sophomore season.
  • Runkel picked up his fourth-straight Patriot League Goalkeeper of the Week honor on March 17, becoming the first player in League history to win any of the weekly honors (Offensive, Defensive, Goalkeeper or Rookie) four-consecutive times.

Record-Setting Quarterback    

  • Justin Ward has continued to be the quarterback of the Greyhounds’ offense this year, passing out 24 assists in the last six contests. He is second in the nation in total assists (30), and he is also second in the country and tops in the Patriot League, with 3.33 assists per game this year. His 30 assists are already tied for eighth in school Division I single-season history.
  • With four assists against Duke  Ward set Loyola’s career Division I record (since 1982) in total assists, eclipsing the mark of 83 set from 1989-92 by Jim Blanding. Following his four against Lafayette, Ward now has 97 in his career. Gary Hanley holds the all-time Loyola record with 160 assists. Ward is also 10th in school Division I history in total points with 145.
  • Ward is in his third year as a starter on attack for the Greyhound after earning USILA All-America Honorable Mention last year after finishing tops on the team in points (62) and assists (35) and second in goals (27). His 62 points ranked tied for fifth in school single-season Division I history, and his 35 assists check in at third on that list.

Offensively Efficient    

  • Loyola is one of only two teams nationally to rank in the top five in shooting percentage and fewest turnovers per game. The Greyhounds lead Division I by averaging 9.89 turnovers per game, nearly two fewer than Denver, which is second in the statistical category. Loyola is also fifth in shooting percentage (.354).
  • The Pioneers are the only other team to be in the top five of both categories, checking in second in turnovers per game (11.78) and shooting percentage (.380).

Near The Top At Both Sides    

  • The Greyhounds are also one of just two teams to be in the top five of scoring offense and defense at the Division I level. Loyola’s goals per game (14.11) rank fourth, and its goals allowed (7.33) are tied for fifth.
  • North Carolina is the other team in the top five for both, matching the Greyhounds in goals allowed while it is second in goals per game (14.78).
  • While it is tied for fifth nationally in scoring defense, Loyola is just fourth in the Patriot League in the category. Army (1st, 5.50), Lehigh (2nd, 6.67) and Colgate (4th, 7.11) all rank ahead of the Greyhounds nationally. In conference games, however, Loyola and Army are tied at 5.25 per contest.

Man-Up Success    

  • Loyola has converted on just under half of its man-up possessions this year, scoring 14 goals on 29 opportunities. Its .483 success rate is good for 10th in NCAA Division I through games of Monday, March 24.
  • Nikko Pontrello leads the way with five man-up goals, while Kevin Ryan has three and Matt Sawyer and Brian Schultz each have two.
  • Eight of Loyola’s extra-man goals have been assisted by Justin Ward.

Games Of Runs    

  • Loyola has used significant runs in all nine of its games this season, and it has had four stretches of seven or more unanswered goals. In all the Greyhounds have 16 runs of 3-0 or better. Here is a look at their four best scoring stretches:

Opponent    Run    Time Covered        Opponent    Run    Time Covered
at Holy Cross    14-0    38:58        Lafayette    12-0    26:53
Towson    10-0    16:38        at Virginia    9-0    14:18

Five-Plus For Two    

  • Matt Sawyer scored six goals, and Nikko Pontrello tallied five for the Greyhounds on Sunday against Duke, marking the first time in over a decade that two Loyola players have scored five or more in the same game.
  • The last pair to do so was Gavin Prout (six) and Tim Goettelmann (five) in a 14-9 win on March 25, 2000, at 14th-ranked Brown University.

Tripled Up    

  • Matt Sawyer entered the March 9 game against Duke with a single-game high of two goals, those coming in the season-opener at the University of Virginia. It took the senior from Waxhaw, N.C., just 15-minutes, 56-seconds against the Blue Devils to match that total, and 20:51 to exceed it.
  • Sawyer finished the game by tripling his previous high, totaling six goals on just seven shots. Through nine games this year, Sawyer has scored 11 goals, good for fourth on the team.

Sherlock Scoring    

  • Brian Sherlock, a redshirt freshman who transfered to Loyola after sitting out last year with an injury at North Carolina, had a career-high five points with three goals and two assists against Lafayette. He has now posted 17 points with nine goals and eight assists this season through nine games, and he also has shown his skill off the ground with 15 ground balls.

Fletch, White And Blue    

  • Senior defender Joe Fletcher was the lone current collegiate player selected as part of one of 52 players who made up the United States Men’s National Team training roster this fall, and the day before Loyola’s season-opener, he found out he is one of 30 players who made the cut for the team that will compete at the 2014 World Cup in Denver.
  • Against Holy Cross, Fletcher set a career-high with eight ground balls, eclipsing his previous total of seven set on three different occasions. In a pair of games against Towson and the Crusaders, he had 11 ground balls and three caused turnovers.
  • He earned his second Patriot League Defensive Player of the Week honor this year on Monday after picking up seven ground balls and causing a turnover against Duke. He also was primarily responsible for holding the Blue Devils’ All-American attacker Jordan Wolf to one goal. Fletcher was again honored on March 17 after limiting Army’s John Glesener to two goals on 22 shots.
  • This season, the Preseason All-American is second on the Greyhounds with 37 ground balls and caused turnovers (13). His 58 career caused turnovers are third all-time at Loyola behind the 90 of P.T. Ricci and 88 of Scott Ratliff.

Not Just Defensive Midfield    

  • Short-stick defensive midfielder Pat Laconi was named the Patriot League Defensive Player of the Week on March 3 after matching his career-high with two goals at Lehigh.
  • The senior, who is a team co-captain and Preseason All-American, had a goal an assist versus Army and a goal at Georgetown, bringing his season totals to six goals an one assist. He now has 11 goals and 10 assists in his four-year career. His 14 caused turnovers this season have brought his career total to 55, fourth most in school history.

Schultz Stepping Up    

  • In his first year as a starter on attack for the Greyhounds, senior Brian Schultz has parlayed his opportunity into a solid start to the season. Through nine games, Schultz has scored 17 goals, second most on the team, and assisted on nine, second behind team-leader Justin Ward.
  • Entering this season, Schultz had seen most of his playing time on extra-man opportunities for the Greyhounds, posting a combined three goals and five assists.

Tewaaraton Watch Trio, Senior CLASS Award Pair    

  • Two of Loyola’s senior co-captains were named to the Tewaaraton Award Watch List when it was released last week. Joe Fletcher and Justin Ward were among the 50 players nationally to receive recognition.
  • They were also two of 20 players nationally to be named candidates for the Senior CLASS Award that seniors who have performed at a high level athletically and in the classroom and who have used their platforms as student-athletes to make positive impacts in the community.
  • In addition to the senior duo that is on the Tewaaraton Award Watch List, junior attacker Nikko Pontrello was also named to the group on March 20.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 24 March 2014 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: Boxing-Sergey Kovalev vs. Cedric Agnew (Saturday 10pm from Atlantic City live on HBO); MLS: Chicago Fire @ DC United (Saturday 4pm from RFK Stadium live on NBC Sports Network); Auto Racing: NASCAR STP 500 (Sunday 1pm from Martinsville, VA live on FOX); Golf: PGA Tour Texas Open (Thursday & Friday 3pm live on Golf Channel Saturday & Sunday 1pm live on Golf Channel 3pm live on NBC), LPGA Tour Kia Classic (Thursday & Friday 6:30pm Saturday & Sunday 7pm from Carlsbad, CA live on Golf Channel)

10. Damon Wayans (Friday & Saturday Magooby’s Joke House); Baltimore Greek Week (Tuesday-Sunday Greektown); Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus (Wednesday-Sunday Baltimore Arena); The Wolf of Wall Street” and “Delivery Man” out on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday); Bad Words“, “Noah” and “Sabotage” out in theaters (Friday)

I assume Damon Wayans will call me while he’s in town. After all, I am close personal friends with the family.

Also…language terribly NSFW (unless you work somewhere selling penny stocks), but this is by far and away the Magnum Opus of Wolf of Wall Street…

9. Mobb Deep (Sunday 8pm Baltimore Soundstage); Los Lonely Boys (Saturday 8pm Sunday 7:30pm Rams Head on Stage); The Ataris (Friday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Grouplove/MS MR/Smallpools (Sunday & Monday 7pm 9:30 Club); The Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band (Thursday 7:30pm The Hamilton); Pentatonix (Saturday 8pm D.A.R. Constitution Hall); Experience Hendrix feat. Buddy Guy/Jonny Lang/Kenny Wayne Shepherd/Bootsy Collins (Sunday 7pm Lincoln Theatre); Johnny Cash “Out Among The Stars” available in stores/on iTunes (Tuesday)

I’m going to start a MS MR cover band called MR MS. I’m clever.

Smallpools is the band that did the best song in 2013 no one gave enough credit to.

I am a supporter of the Rev.

Kenny Wayne Shepherd. Jimi Hendrix. Spoiler alert: it doesn’t suck.

(Continued on Page 2…)

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Loyola attackman Ward picks up weekly Patriot League honor

Posted on 24 March 2014 by WNST Staff

Ward Earns Patriot League Offensive Player Of The Week Award

CENTER VALLEY, Pa. – Loyola University Maryland senior attacker Justin Ward was named the Patriot League Offensive Player of the Week on Monday, becoming the third different Greyhounds player to win the honor in the last four weeks.

Ward had eight assists and four goals in two games last week, helping the Greyhounds extend their record to 8-1 overall and 4-0 in the Patriot League. Earlier Monday, Loyola moved up to No. 1 nationally in the USILA coaches and Warrior/Inside Lacrosse media polls.

Last Wednesday at Georgetown University, Ward had a goal and assisted on four others as Loyola rallied for a 10-9 victory over the Hoyas. Three of his assists came in the second half after the Greyhounds trailed 7-5 early in the third quarter.

He then had three goals and four assists on Saturday as Loyola beat conference-foe Lafayette College, 21-4. His seven points and three goals were both highs for Ward this season.

Through games of Sunday, March 23, Ward leads NCAA Division I players in total assists with 30. He is also tied for the team and Patriot League lead in total points with 39, matching the accumulation of fellow attacker Nikko Pontrello.

The award is the fourth offensive player of the week award that the Greyhounds have earned this year, following two by Pontrello and one by Matt Sawyer. Loyola has earned a total of 14 Patriot League weekly honors this season. It is the second conference weekly award of Ward’s career; he was an ECAC Lacrosse League Offensive Player of the Week last season.

Ward and the top-ranked Greyhounds continue Patriot League play with the first of back-to-back road games on Saturday, March 29, in Hamilton, N.Y., where they will face Colgate University at 12 noon.

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Loyola new number one in both weekly lacrosse polls

Posted on 24 March 2014 by WNST Staff

Loyola Men’s Lacrosse Rises To No. 1 In Polls

BALTIMORE – Loyola University Maryland men’s lacrosse reached the top spot in both the Warrior/Inside Lacrosse media poll and the USILA coaches’ rankings on Monday for the first time in 2014, marking the third-straight season the Greyhounds have been ranked No. 1 for at least one polling session.

The Greyhounds have won eight-straight games and are 8-1 overall, 4-0 in the Patriot League, heading into a Saturday, March 29, game at Colgate University in Hamilton, N.Y.

Loyola was last ranked first in the opening polls of the 2013 season, and the Greyhounds also ascended to the top spot on April 16, 2012, where the spent the next three weeks before entering the NCAA Championships ranked second.

It also marks the first time that a Patriot League men’s lacrosse team has been ranked No. 1 in either poll, and it the Greyhounds are the first team in any sport from the conference to be ranked No. 1 since College of the Holy Cross was tops in then Division I-AA during the 1987 football season.

Maryland fell to fourth in both polls after losing at North Carolina Saturday-their first loss of the year. Johns Hopkins dropped to 9th in the coaches’ poll, 10th in the media poll after falling in overtime Saturday at Virginia, their second straight loss. Towson is receiving votes in both polls.

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Loyola perhaps set to take over top spot after crushing Lafayette

Posted on 22 March 2014 by WNST Staff

Nine Score As Men’s Lacrosse Tops Lafayette, 21-4

BALTIMORE – Loyola University Maryland’s starting attack of Justin Ward, Nikko Pontrello and Brian Schultz all scored four goals, and six other Greyhounds tallied at least one, as No. 2-ranked Loyola beat visiting Lafayette College, 21-4, in Patriot League action Saturday afternoon at Ridley Athletic Complex.

Ward finished with a team-high eight points, added four assists to bring his nation-leading total to 30 this season. Schultz’s four were a career-high.

Brian Sherlock added a career-high with three goals and two assists, and Romar Dennis matched his previous best with two tallies. Kevin Ryan and Matt Cunningham each scored goals, while Joe Fletcher and Mike Kutzer each had their first of their careers in transition.

Led by Ward’s four assists, 15 of the Greyhounds’ 21 goals were assisted on Saturday. Sherlock had two for the third time this season, and Tyler Albrecht distributed a career-best two. Ryan, Schultz, Dennis, Cunningham, Jordan Germershausen, Matt Sawyer and Graham Savio all had one.

Loyola (8-1 overall, 4-0 Patriot League) controlled possession in the game, winning 18-of-29 faceoffs and picking up 30 more ground balls than the Leopards, 52-22.

Savio won 13-of-19 restarts he took, and Blake Burkhard was successful on 5-of-8. Savio picked up a career-high 11 ground balls, while David Manning and Ryan Fournier each had career-bests with six and five, respectively.

Schultz and Sherlock combined to get the scoring started early for the Greyhounds less than three minutes into the game as Schultz rolled the crease and took a Sherlock pass to score. Ward tallied his first after Dennis dodged to the middle and passed to Ward for a 10-yard shot at 10:14.

Just over a minute later, Schultz scored his second, ripping a 15-yard shot off a Matt Sawyer goal. Lafayette got on the board at 8:03when Sonny Round dished out one of his two assists, finding Robert Orazietti crashing to the crease for a goal.

Schultz scored his third of the game, less than halfway through the first quarter, at 7:42 when he struck from nine-yards out off a Tyler Albrecht assist.

Fletcher, a two-time All-American defender, scored his first career goal 35 seconds later when Ward hit him with a pass in front of the crease, and Fletcher dumped it in for what would be the eventual game-winner.

Loyola led 6-2 by the end of the first quarter as Brendan Dunlap scored one of his two for the Leopards (1-6, 1-4) and Pontrello responded for the Greyhounds.

Pontrello quickly made it 7-2 in Loyola’s favor. Savio won the second quarter’s opening faceoff, picked up the ground ball and ran it into the box where he hit Pontrello on the crease for his second of the day.

Dennis and Sherlock scored their first of the afternoon at 14:16 and 13:12, and Loyola was up 9-2 with 13:12 left before halftime. Sherlock would score twice more in the quarter, and Pontrello and Ward each added goals, giving Loyola a 13-2 halftime advantage.

The lead went to 17-2 Loyola after Schultz and Pontrello scored, and Ward had back-to-back strikes. Brian Bock scored for Lafayette with 4:55 left in the third quarter, but Dennis, Cunningham and Kutzer responded with Greyhounds goals.

Dunlap scored his team-high second with 1.9 ticks left before the end of the frame, making it 20-4 Loyola at the end of the frame. Ryan had the only score of the fourth quarter at 9:15, providing the final 21-4 margin.

Loyola outshot the Leopards, 56-16. Jack Runkel played less than three full quarters and made five saves, allowing two goals for Loyola. Pat McEnerney stopped two shots, and Sam Beazell played the final seven minutes of scoreless lacrosse.

The Greyhounds continue Patriot League action on Saturday, March 29, with their first of two road games. Loyola will travel to Hamilton, N.Y., to face Colgate University at 12 noon.

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Loyola looks for seventh straight Saturday against Lafayette

Posted on 21 March 2014 by WNST Staff

Game Information
Opponent Lafayette Leopards
Date Saturday, March 22, 2014
Time 1:00 p.m.
Location Baltimore, Md. | Ridley Athletic Complex


Quick Hits About The ’Hounds

  • Loyola University Maryland plays its second game of the week on Saturday, March 22, when it hosts Lafayette College at 1 o’clock.
  • After winning four games by an average of 10.5 goals, and none by less than seven, the Greyhounds have won two-straight by one goal.
  • Loyola committed just seven turnovers on Wednesday night at Georgetown to reduce its nation-leading turnovers per game mark to 10.0.
  • Nikko Pontrello, who on Thursday was added to the Tewaaraton Award Watch List, scored three goals against the Hoyas and now leads the NCAA in total goals with 29. He is fourth nationally in goals per game (3.625).
  • Justin Ward passed out four assists Wednesday in addition to scoring a goal to raise his season total to 26, also tops in the country.
  • Kevin Ryan is 10th nationally in shot percentage. He has scored goals on 51.9 percent of his shots (14-of-27) this year.
  • Pat Frazier picked up a career-high four ground balls on Wednesday night at Georgetown. He’s also third on the team with eight caused turnovers.

Last Time Out

  • Nikko Pontrello scored all three of his goals in the second half on Wednesday night, his final tally coming with 51.4 seconds left to lift Loyola to a 10-9 non-conference victory at Georgetown.
  • Pontrello had tied the game with 7:55 left, shot-faking from the crease after a Justin Ward pass, and with less than a minute to play in regulation, he dodged from behind the crease and rolled toward the goal, beating Jake Haley low with his shot.
  • Georgetown won the ensuing faceoff, and the Hoyas called two timeouts to set up a final shot. David Manning, however, stripped Bo Stafford of the ball with less than seven seconds left, and Joe Fletcher picked up the ground ball to secure the win for the Greyhounds.
  • Georgetown scored three-straight goals that spanned the second and third quarters to take a 7-5 advantage 3:30 into the third. Brian Schultz bookended Pontrello’s first goal to push Loyola back in front with 2:47 left in the third.
  • The Hoyas rallied to regain the lead, however, with 11:19 to go in regulation. The game finished with seven ties and five lead changes.

Follow The Action    

  • Saturday’s game, and all non-televised home games, will be broadcast on the Patriot League Network. Additionally, all of Loyola’s road conference games will also be available on the free HD network.
  • Log on to LoyolaGreyhounds.com/pln or PatriotLeague.tv to watch the home games on your computer, web-enabled televisions and most mobile devices.
  • Brett Hollander will call the play-by-play, and Chris Gunkel ’90 will provide the analysis.

In The Polls    

  • With last Saturday’s win over Army, Loyola remained at No. 2 in the USILA Coaches, Warrior/Inside Lacrosse and Lacrosse Magazine media polls. Prior to Saturday’s games, Loyola was tied for second in the coaches’ version with Johns Hopkins University.

Series History    

  • Loyola and Lafayette will play for the second time in series history, but Saturday’s game will be the first meeting since Loyola’s opening game of the 1939 season. In that contest, the Greyhounds beat the Leopards, 15-1.

Get To Ten    

  • Since Charley Toomey became head coach at Loyola in 2006, the Greyhounds have scored 10 or more goals on 62 occasions. After defeating the Hoyas, 10-9, on Wednesday, Loyola has won 80.6 percent of those games (50-12).

Since 2012    

  • Loyola has the best winning percentage in NCAA Division I men’s lacrosse since the start of the 2012 season. The Greyhounds are 36-7 during that stretch (17-1 in 2012, 11-5 in 2013 and 7-1 this season) for a .837 mark.
  • Only Duke has won more games (37) than Loyola during the run, but the Blue Devils are second to the Greyhounds in winning percentage by nearly eight percent (37-12, .755).

Chart Toppers    

  • A pair of Greyhounds attackers lead the nation through games of Wednesday, March 19, in both total goals and assists. Nikko Pontrello paces Division I with 29 goals, while Justin Ward is first with 26 assists.

Pontrello Putting Up Points    

  • Nikko Pontrello had his eighth multi-goal game is as many contests to open the season on Saturday when he scored three in the second half against Georgetown. Through games of Wednesday, March 19, Pontrello leads the nation in total goals with 29.
  • He scored two in the season-opener at Virginia and then had three against Penn State and Towson before scoring a career-high six goals at Holy Cross. He then tallied four at Lehigh and five against Duke.
  • Two of his goals have been game-winners in one-goal contests. Pontrello scored 19 seconds into overtime to give Loyola a 12-11 win at Penn State, and he then tallied one with 51.4 seconds left in regulation to push the Greyhounds past Georgetown, 10-9.
  • Pontrello leads the Greyhounds with 29 goals and 34 points through eight games. He has already eclipsed his goal total from last year when he finished his sophomore campaign with 16.
  • He leads the Patriot League and is fourth nationally in goals per game (3.65), while he is first and 12th in points per game (4.43).

Stopping Shots    

  • After opening the season with a .214 save percentage in the opener at Virginia, Jack Runkel has played to a .646 mark, saving 82 out of 127 shots on goal he’s faced. In a six-game stretch  against Towson, Holy Cross, Lehigh, Duke and Army, Runkel made 61 saves and allowed just 26 goals (.701).
  • The senior goalkeeper, who earned 2012 NCAA Championships All-Tournament honors, has a goals against average of 7.51 this season and a cumulative saves percentage of .603 through five games. He has moved up to fourth in the nation in saves percentage and seventh in goals against average.
  • In three years as a starter for the Greyhounds, Runkel has a 7.89 goals against average and .557 saves percentage; his record between the pipes is 34-6. He is second in wins among active goalkeepers, trailing only Maryland’s Niko Amato who has 40 victories. Amato (as of Monday), however, Amato is a four-year starter, while Runkel did not start until early in his sophomore season.
  • Runkel picked up his fourth-straight Patriot League Goalkeeper of the Week honor on March 17, becoming the first player in League history to win any of the weekly honors (Offensive, Defensive, Goalkeeper, Rookie) four-consecutive times.

Record-Setting Quarterback    

  • Justin Ward has continued to be the quarterback of the Greyhounds’ offense this year, passing out 20 assists in the last five contests. He leads the nation in total assists (26) and is third in the nation, and tops in the Patriot League, with 3.25 assists per game this year.
  • With four assists against Duke – the second game in he posted that total – Ward set Loyola’s career Division I record (since 1982) in total assists, eclipsing the mark of 83 set from 1989-92 by Jim Blanding. Following his four at Georgetown, Ward now has 93 in his career. Gary Hanley holds the all-time Loyola record with 160 assists. Ward is also 12th in school Division I history in total points with 138.
  • Ward is in his third year as a starter on attack for the Greyhound after earning USILA All-America Honorable Mention last year after finishing tops on the team in points (62) and assists (35) and second in goals (27). His 62 points ranked tied for fifth in school single-season Division I history, and his 35 assists check in at third on that list.

On Target    

  • Kevin Ryan scored twice against Army, needing just two shots, and he added a first-quarter goal against Georgetown. Through eight games, the senior midfielder has scored on 14 of his 27 shots for a shooting percentage of .519, the 10th-best shooting percentage in the nation this year.
  • Take out an 0-of-5 performance in the season-opener at Virginia, and Ryan has found the net on 13-of-17 shots (.764) in the Greyhounds’ last six games. He has three games this year – at Holy Cross (3-of-3), at Lehigh (5-of-5) and Army (2-of-2) – in which he has scored on all of his shots.

Man-Up Success    

  • Loyola has converted on exactly half of its man-up possessions this year, scoring 13 goals on 26 opportunities. Its .500 success rate is good for a tie for ninth in NCAA Division I through games of Thursday, March 20.
  • Nikko Pontrello leads the way with five man-up goals, while Kevin Ryan has three and Matt Sawyer, two.
  • Seven of Loyola’s extra-man goals have been assisted by Justin Ward.

Five-Plus For Two    

  • Matt Sawyer scored six goals, and Nikko Pontrello tallied five for the Greyhounds on Sunday against Duke, marking the first time in over a decade that two Loyola players have scored five or more in the same game.
  • The last pair to do so was Gavin Prout (six) and Tim Goettelmann (five) in a 14-9 win on March 25, 2000, at 14th-ranked Brown University.

Games Of Runs    

  • Loyola has used significant runs in all eight of its games this season, and it has had four stretches of seven or more unanswered goals. In all the Greyhounds have 13 runs of 3-0 or better. Here is a look at their four best scoring stretches:

Opponent    Run    Time Covered        Opponent    Run    Time Covered
at Holy Cross    14-0    38:58        Towson    10-0    16:38
at Virginia    9-0    14:18        Towson    7-0    18:37

Tripled Up    

  • Matt Sawyer entered the March 9 game against Duke with a single-game high of two goals, those coming in the season-opener at the University of Virginia. It took the senior from Waxhaw, N.C., just 15-minutes, 56-seconds against the Blue Devils to match that total, and 20:51 to exceed it.
  • Sawyer finished the game by tripling his previous high, totaling six goals on just seven shots. His lone shot that did not find the net was perhaps his hardest of the night, and it went off the far-side post.
  • His six goals raised his 2014 total to 10, tied for third on the team. He now has 14 goals in his career.
  • Sunday’s game was not the first time a member of the Sawyer family had put up six goals on Duke. Matt’s older brother, three-time All-American Mike, scored six goals and had two assists in a 13-8 win over the Blue Devils in March 2012.

Slowing Scorers    

  • Duke’s Jordan Wolf and Josh Dionne came into the March 9 game tied for the team lead in goals (12 each), and the duo had a combined 235 career goals. Loyola, however, held them to just one goal each in the victory.
  • Against Army, Loyola faced another top scorer, John Glesener. Through six games prior to facing the Greyhounds, Glesener had scored 15 goals, but he was held to two on 22 shots by the Loyola defense.

Fletch, White And Blue    

  • Senior defender Joe Fletcher was the long current collegiate player selected as part of one of 52 players who made up the United States Men’s National Team training roster this fall, and the day before Loyola’s season-opener, he found out he is one of 30 players who made the cut for the team that will compete at the 2014 World Cup in Denver.
  • Against Holy Cross, Fletcher set a career-high with eight ground balls, eclipsing his previous total of seven set on three different occasions. In a pair of games against Towson and the Crusaders, he had 11 ground balls and three caused turnovers.
  • He earned his second Patriot League Defensive Player of the Week honor this year on Monday after picking up seven ground balls and causing a turnover against Duke. He also was primarily responsible for holding the Blue Devils’ All-American attacker Jordan Wolf to one goal. Fletcher was again honored on March 17 after limiting Army’s John Glesener to two goals on 22 shots.
  • This season, the Preseason All-American leads the Greyhounds with 32 ground balls, and he is tied for the squad lead with 12 caused turnovers. His 57 career caused turnovers are third all-time at Loyola behind the 90 of P.T. Ricci and 88 of Scott Ratliff.

Not Just Defensive Midfield    

  • Short-stick defensive midfielder Pat Laconi was named the Patriot League Defensive Player of the Week on March 3 after matching his career-high with two goals at Lehigh.
  • The senior, who is a team co-captain and Preseason All-American, had a goal an assist versus Army and a goal at Georgetown, bringing his season totals to six goals an one assist. He now has 11 goals and 10 assists in his four-year career. His 12 caused turnovers this season have brought his career total to 53, tied for fourth most in school history.

Schultz Stepping Up    

  • In his first year as a starter on attack for the Greyhounds, senior Brian Schultz has parlayed his opportunity into a solid start to the season. Through eight games, Schultz has scored 13 goals, third most on the team, and eight assists, second behind team-leader Justin Ward.
  • Entering this season, Schultz had seen most of his playing time on extra-man opportunities for the Greyhounds. As a sophomore and junior, he posted a combined three goals and five assists.

Tewaaraton Watch, Senior CLASS Award List Pair    

  • Two of Loyola’s senior co-captains were named to the Tewaaraton Award Watch List when it was released last week. Joe Fletcher and Justin Ward were among the 50 players nationally to receive recognition.
  • They were also two of 20 players nationally to be named candidates for the Senior CLASS Award that seniors who have performed at a high level athletically and in the classroom and who have used their platforms as student-athletes to make positive impacts in the community.
  • In addition to the senior duo that is on the Tewaaraton Award Watch List, junior attacker Nikko Pontrello was also named to the group on March 20.

Up Next    

  • The Greyhounds play their next two games, both Patriot League tilts, on the road. They head to Hamilton, N.Y., for a Saturday, March 29, game at Colgate University before traveling to the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md., on Saturday, April 5.

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Loyola attackman Pontrello added to Tewaaraton Award watch list

Posted on 20 March 2014 by WNST Staff

Pontrello Added To Tewaaraton Watch List

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Nikko Pontrello, Loyola University Maryalnd’s junior attacker leads NCAA Division I men’s lacrosse players in total goals this season, was named to the Tewaaraton Award Watch List on Thursday, joining teammates Joe Fletcher and Justin Ward.

Pontrello has scored two or more goals in all eight contests Loyola (7-1 overall) has played this season, and he has three-plus in six of the games. As of March 20, Pontrello is fourth in the nation in goals per game (3.625) and tops in total goals (29).

The Marlton, N.J., native entered the season with 20 career goals after scoring four as a freshman in 2012 and 16 last season when he also totaled 19 assists to finish third on the team with 35 points.

This season, he opened the year with two goals and an assist at Virginia, and since then he has scored four goals twice (Towson, at Lehigh), five (Duke) and six (at Holy Cross) once each.

In last night’s 10-9 win at Georgetown, Pontrello scored all three of his goals in the second half, the last coming on a dodge from behind the cage and roll to the crease with 51.4 seconds left to record the game-winning tally.

Pontrello has scored on 50 percent of his 58 shots this season, tying him for 12th in the nation in shot percentage. He also is third on the team in ground balls with 23.

He joins fellow attacker Ward and Fletcher, a defender, on the watch list of those who will vie for the honor of top lacrosse player in the nation. Ward leads the country in total assists (26) and is third in assists per game (3.25), while Fletcher is one of the nation’s top defenders, pacing the Greyhounds in ground balls (32) and tied for the team-lead with 12 caused turnovers.

The trio will lead Loyola back into Patriot League action on Saturday, March 22, at 1 p.m. when the Greyhounds host Lafayette College at Ridley Athletic Complex. The game, while will air live on the Patriot League Network (www.patriotleague.tv), is part of a doubleheader with the Loyola women hosting Lehigh University at 4 p.m.

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