Tag Archive | "Patriot League"

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Navy hosts Loyola for Patriot League battle Saturday

Posted on 04 April 2014 by WNST Staff

Game Preview
• Fresh off a 13-7 victory over Boston U. a week ago, Navy (4-5, 3-3 Patriot League) will kick off a stretch of three consecutive games against nationally-ranked opponents when it battles No. 1-ranked Loyola (9-1, 5-0 PL) on Saturday.  Action is slated for 12:00 pm at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.
• The game will be streamed online for FREE via PatriotLeague.TV and NavySports.com.  Live stats will also be available at NavySports.com.
• The Mids snapped a three-game losing skid last Saturday when they made their inaugural trip to Nickerson Field and dealt the Boston University Terriers a 13-7 loss.  Eight different players scored goals for the Midshipmen, including defensemen Pat Kiernan and Jules Godino, while sophomore attackman T.J. Hanzsche produced his third hat trick of the year.
• Loyola earned its ninth straight win by scoring a 10-8 victory over Colgate on the road last Saturday.  After trailing 5-4 in the early minutes of the third quarter, the Greyhounds staged a 4-0 run and took the lead for good as Loyola secured a spot in the Patriot League Tournament in its first season as a member of the conference.

Taking the Field In …
10    Navy has lost just five games (58-5) when scoring 10 or more goals since the start of the 2004 season … Navy is 12-0 under Sowell when scoring 10 or more goals (5-0 in 2012, 3-0 in 2013, 4-0 in 2014).
9    Senior co-captain Pat Kiernan stands 9th on Navy’s career ground balls list with 166 … it’s the most ground balls by a Navy player since William Wallace set the record with 222 from 2004-07.
8    8 of Gabe Voumard’s 10 goals this season have been unassisted … over his three-year career, 22 of his 27 goals have been unassisted.
7    Just 2 opponents have won the faceoff battle against the Mids this season, however Navy has lost 7 straight games when the opponent has won more draws.
6    Just 6 Navy players have scored 80 goals and dealt out 50 assists … senior attackmanSam Jones needs just 1 goal to add his name to the list (79G, 54A)
5    Sam Jones has scored all but 5 of his points this year at home … he has punched in 26 (16-10) of his 31 (17-14) points in front of his hometown crowd.
4    4 of Patrick Keena’s 9 points this spring have come on extra-man offense, scoring a goal and adding 3 assists.
3    Sophomore attackman T.J. Hanzsche is coming off his 3rd hat trick of the season … meanwhile, he has produced at least one point in 15 consecutive games.
2    The last two games between Navy and Loyola have been decided by a combined 2 points … the Greyhounds defeated Navy 8-7 OT in 2010 and 9-8 in 2011.
1    With games over the next month against #1 Loyola (9-1), #4 Maryland (9-1), #10 Johns Hopkins (5-3) and #18 Army (6-3), Navy stands No. 1 in the country for the toughest remaining schedule.  Those four teams have a combined record of 29-8.

Scouting the Greyhounds
• Under the direction of ninth-year head coach Charley Toomey, the Loyola Greyhounds enter today’s matchup as the No. 1-ranked team in the country and are riding a nation’s-best (along with Cornell) nine-game winning streak.  Loyola opened the season with a controversial 14-13 overtime loss at Virginia on Feb. 6 and have rolled since.  The Greyhounds have wins over Penn State (12-11 OT), Towson (20-4), Holy Cross (16-4), Lehigh (14-7), Duke (14-7), Army (7-6), Georgetown (10-9), Lafayette (21-4) and Colgate (10-8).
• The preseason Patriot League favorite, the Greyhounds are atop the conference standings as the lone unbeaten in league play at 5-0.  Loyola is the only school who has secured a spot in the six-team Patriot League Tournament slated for the week of April 21.
• Loyola is ranked among the nation’s top 5 in eight of the 15 statistical categories.  The Greyhounds are ranked No. 1 in turnovers per game (10.20), No. 2 in winning percentage (.900), No. 3 in points per game (21.80) and scoring margin (+6.30), No. 4 in assists per game (8.10), clearing percentage (.931) and scoring defense (7.40) and fifth in scoring offense (13.70).  If there was a chink in the armor, it would be the Greyhounds’ man-down defense whish is ranked 53rd (.565).
• Attackmen Justin Ward and Nikko Pontrello complement one another quite nicely as Ward leads the team with 44 points on 11 goals and 33 assists, while Pontrello has produced 43 points on 37 goals and six assists.  Ward is 10th nationally in poins per game (4.40) and third in assists per game (3.30), while Pontrello stands 11th in points per game (4.30) and is second in goals per game (3.70).
• Senior keeper Jack Runkel is ranked fourth nationally in goals-against average, giving up 7.24 goals per game and his 60.7 save percentage is the fourth best in the country.  As a team, Loyola has given up double digits just twice this season, those coming in the first two games of the season.

Navy vs. Loyola – The Series
• The two programs are meeting for just the seventh time and the first time under third-year Navy head coach Rick Sowell.
• The series is split at three wins apiece, as Navy won the first three games and Loyola has won the last three.
• Saturday’s contest marks the series’ sixth game to be played in Annapolis.  The only game played on Loyola soil was in 2011.
• The two programs first met on May 6, 1939, with Navy scoring a 14-4 victory.  The Mids also took wins over Loyola in 1942 (12-8) and 1943 (8-1).  However, the two teams would not meet again until the NCAA Tournament in 1993.  The Greyhounds dealt the Mids a 19-8 to end their season.
• The two programs rekindled the series in 2010 with Loyola scoring an 8-7 decision in overtime and a year later the Greyhounds earned a 9-8 come-from-behind win over the Mids in Baltimore.

2011 Navy-Loyola Recap
• Fourteenth-ranked Loyola overcame a five-goal deficit to earn a 9-8 victory over Navy on Feb. 19, 2011.  A goal by attackman Patrick Fanshaw with 1:08 remaining in the contest sealed the win for the Greyhounds.
• Navy took 17 of its 24 shots in the opening half and scored seven goals. Meanwhile, in the second half, Navy lost nine of the 10 faceoffs and managed just seven shots in the entire half.  In the third quarter alone, Loyola outshot the Mids, 16-1, and owned a 10-1 ground ball advantage.
• A goal by Mike Sawyer at the 6:46 mark sparked a four-goal run by the Greyhounds in the third quarter and was capped by a goal by Fanshaw with 3.7 seconds left in the period that knotted the game at seven apiece.
• Loyola draw specialist John Schiavone won all five faceoffs in the third quarter to keep the ball out of Navy’s hands.  In fact, Navy got off just one shot in the third quarter while throwing the ball away five times.
• The Mids fought their way back and after more than 28 minutes of being held scoreless,Sam Jones found sophomore midfielder Jay Mann who unleashed a long bounce shot that snuck its way in at 7:48.
• The game remained deadlocked at 8-8 for nearly seven minutes before Chris Basler would find Fanshaw who exposed a missed switch by Navy and stuck a lefty shot past Wickham for the game-winner (1:08).
• Navy did have one last shot with five seconds to go in the game, but a shot by Andy Warner was snatched out of the air by keeper Jake Hagelin to preserve the win.

2004 Squad to Be Honored
• The 2004 Navy lacrosse team will be recognized at halftime of next Saturday’s home game against Loyola.
• Most considered the Mids’ season a Cinderella story.  But the blood, sweat and tears spoke volumes for the Navy squad that fought to play in the program’s first National Championship game since 1975.
• Over the course of the season, several milestones were achieved, including winning a school-record 15 games.  In addition to recording the most wins in Academy history, Navy earned its highest ranking — No. 2 — for five-consecutive weeks.  Its 9-6 win over Maryland in College Park was the program’s first win over a No. 1-ranked program and one-of-six Navy wins over top-10 ranked teams.
• Along the way, the Mids scored an 18-10 win on the road against ninth-ranked Army in what was the seventh win amidst a 13-game winning streak against their arch rivals (1998-07).
• After sweeping through the Patriot League with a 7-0 record in its first season as a member of the league, Navy conquered Colgate and Hobart in the league’s postseason tourney to earn the automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
• By virtue of its Patriot League Tournament title, Navy earned an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament in what was its first appearance in the postseason tournament since 1999.
• The Midshipmen went on to gain the nation’s support as they fought their way through the NCAA Tournament, first defeating Penn handily, 11-5, at home and then surviving a battle against seventh-seeded Cornell (6-5) on the Big Red’s home turf.  Navy made it to the coveted national semifinals where it withstood multiple rallies by eighth-ranked Princeton to earn an 8-7 victory and punch its ticket to play in the NCAA Championship Game.  In a back and forth contest, Syracuse scored three goals with under five minutes remaining in the game to edge the Mids, 14-13, with better than 40,000 fans looking on.
• Seven Midshipmen garnered All-America honors, including keeper Matt Russell who was named a First-Team All-American and the winner of the Ens. C. Markland Kelly Award as the nation’s top goalkeeper.    Ian Dingman (Second Team), Ben Bailey (Third Team), Mitch Hendler (Third Team), Joe Bossi (Honorable Mention), Graham Gill (Honorable Mention) and Steve Looney (Honorable Mention) also garnered All-America recognition.  Meanwhile, Richie Meade was the recipient of the Morris Touchstone Memorial Award, given to the National Coach of the Year.

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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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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 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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Balanced Navy attack not enough to top Colgate

Posted on 22 March 2014 by WNST Staff

ANNAPOLIS, Md. —  Seven different players scored for the Midshipmen, but it would not be enough to stifle a potent Colgate offense that dealt Navy a 10-7 loss in men’s lacrosse action on Saturday afternoon at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.  Navy fell to 3-5 on the year, including 2-3 in Patriot League action, while the Raiders, who are ranked 18th in the Warrior/Inside Lacrosse Media Poll, improved to 7-2 and 3-1 in conference play.

“We did an awful lot of good things today, but give credit to Colgate who just made more plays than us,” said third-year Navy head coach Rick Sowell.  “Overall there are some good things that we did today and we need to stay the course.”

The Midshipmen looked to have the hot hand early, as they opened up a 2-0 lead six minutes into the contest.  Senior attackman Sam Jones (Annapolis, Md.) scored his 16th goal of the season just under two minutes into the game and classmate Pat Durkin(Germantown, Md.) punched in an unassisted goal at 8:57.

Colgate answered Durkin’s goal with an uncontested shot by leading scorer Ryan Walsh at the 7:15 mark.  With the goal, Walsh extended his streak of consecutive games with a point to 42 which is the fourth-longest active streak in Div. I lacrosse this season.

Navy pushed its lead back to two when Durkin carried the ball down the right side of the box and found senior attackTucker Hull (Charlotte, N.C.) anchored on the left crease and Hull fired in his 70th collegiate goal at the 3:35 mark.  Hull now joins the ranks of just 12 players in Div. I lax this season who have amassed 70 goals and 50 assists over their careers.

Colgate, however, would score the final two goals of the first period, including a goal by sophomore middie Eric Foote with 44.2 seconds remaining in the quarter, to even the score at 3-3.

The Raiders scored on a high-to-high shot by Brendon McCann to open the second quarter and take its first lead of the contest at 13:19.

Navy’s T.J. Hanzsche (Berwyn, Pa.) answered at the 11:51 mark when he curled around the right side of the cage and punched in his shot from seven yards out.  The goal extended Hanzsche’s point/goal-scoring streak to 14 straight games.

That goal, however, would be Navy’s last for more than 30 minutes of action, and Navy would score the next three goals to take a 7-4 lead less than three minutes into the fourth quarter.

“I thought we picked up right where we left off in practice this week and scored a few early,” said Sowell.  “Unfortunately we had that long drought and Colgate had a number of quality possessions.  They are good all around, but in particular they have a solid offense.”

Navy finally found the back of the net at 11:11 in the fourth quarter and closed to within two (5-7) when senior midfielderAustin Heneveld (East Hampton, N.Y.) split the double team on the right wing and sent his shot past Colgate rookie goalkeeper Brandon Burke.

Colgate, who had five different goal scorers in the game, saw three different players stick goals over a five-minute span to give the Raiders a 10-5 advantage.

The Mids tried to rally over the final two minutes of the contest, as a transition goal by senior long pole Pat Kiernan(Ridgewood, N.J.) and a faceoff win and goal by freshman Brady Dove (Stevensville, Md.) trimmed the lead to three with 1:47 to play in the game, but it would not be enough to overcome the deficit.

McCann and Foote led the way for Colgate with three goals apiece, while Burke was solid in goal with seven saves.

Navy keeper John Connors (Bellmore, N.Y.) made nine stops, including four each in the second and fourth quarters.  Connors also caused a pair of Colgate turnovers, while Kiernan forced three.

The faceoff game ended nearly even as Colgate junior Alex Kinnealey won 11 draws, while Dove won 10 for the Mids.  Kinnealey took control early in the game, winning eight of the 11 draws in the first 30 minutes of action, however Dove won seven of the 10 in the second half.  Kinnealey came into the contest winning 61.3 percent of his faceoffs, while Dove had won 61.0 percent.

“We anticipated if (the faceoff battle) being a big challenge for us,” said Sowell.  “Brady has been great all season for us, but today he came up against a matchup that gave him some trouble.  Sometimes you come across a player that trumps your move.  I thought he did a good job of adjusting in the second half.”

The Mids will be back in action next Saturday when they make the trek to north to face Boston U. in the inaugural game between the two programs.  Faceoff is slated for 1:00 pm.

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Navy returns home Saturday to face Colgate

Posted on 21 March 2014 by WNST Staff

2014 Navy Men’s Lacrosse Game Specifics
Game 8 Navy (3-4, 2-2 PL) vs. Colgate (6-2, 2-1 PL)
Date and Faceoff March 22 at 12:00 pm ET
Location Annapolis, Md. | Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium (34,000)


Game Preview

• After playing its last two games on the road, the Navy men’s lacrosse team (3-4, 2-2 Patriot League) returns home Saturday to battle conference foe Colgate (6-2, 2-1 PL).  Faceoff is slated for 12:00 pm at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.
• The game will be streamed online for FREE via PatriotLeague.TV and NavySports.com.  Live stats will also be available at NavySports.com.
• The Mids’ struggles with road play continued last week with a pair of road losses to Towson (14-9) and Lehigh (13-2).  Sophomore attack T.J. Hanzsche handled the highlights for the Mids, scoring both of the Mids’ goals as he pushed his consecutives games with a point (and goal) to 12.
• Colgate is coming off a 15-10 loss against No. 4 Cornell this past Tuesday, snapping a four-game winning streak by the Raiders.  Colgate won those four games (Bucknell, Hobart, Boston U. and Binghamton) by a combined of six goals.

Meet the Mids Set for Saturday
• Navy will hold its annual Meet the Mids event following its game against Colgate on Saturday.
• Members of the Navy men’s lacrosse team will be available for autographs on the Blue Concourse, with the first 300 kids in line for the postgame autograph session receiving a Navy lacrosse “Meet the Mids” t-shirt, compliments of Annapolis area Papa John’s and Chick-fil-A.
• For more information on the event or to purchase tickets, call 1-800-US4-NAVY or visit NavySports.com(.)

Taking the Field In …
10 – Navy has lost just five games (57-5) when scoring 10 or more goals since the start of the 2004 season … Navy is 11-0 under Sowell when scoring 10 or more goals (5-0 in 2012, 3-0 in 2013, 3-0 in 2014).
9 – The Mids have reached double digits in 9 of the 16 games they have played against Colgate, winning all 9 of the games.
8 – Navy is 8-6 under third-year head coach Rick Sowell when leading after the first quarter of play.  The Mids have held the lead after the first 15 minutes of action if 5 of their 7 games this season and own a 3-2 mark in those contests.
7 – Among starting attack Sam Jones’ 15 goals this season, 7 have been unassisted.  As a team, 31 of Navy’s 75 goals (41.3) have been unassisted.
6 – Freshman faceoff specialist Brady Dove, who is Navy’s all-time freshman faceoff wins leader, needs 6 wins on Saturday to become just the 14th player in school history to win 100 draws over the span of a career.
5 – Senior midfielder Pat Durkin has scored 5 goals this season and all 5 have been scored at home.
4 – Senior attack Tucker Hull needs 4 goals to join Navy’s all-time goals scored list with 73.  He would also join teammate Sam Jones as one of just nine active NCAA players to score 70 plus goals and register 50 assists.
3 – Jones needs just 3 points to become only the seventh player in school history to reach the 30-point milestone in each of his four seasons and the first sinceNick Mirabito (2005-08).
2 – Sowell is 2 wins from earning his 100th collegiate victory.  He owns a 98-99 record in 15 years as a head coach.
1 – Navy senior long pole Pat Kiernan stands No. 1 on Navy’s career caused turnovers list with61 over his four year career.  He leads Navy this season with 10 takeaways.

Scouting the Raiders
• In his third season as head coach at Colgate, Mike Murphy has led the Raiders to a 6-2 mark winning four in a row prior to Tuesday night’s 15-10 loss to fourth-ranked Cornell.  In addition to the loss again The Big Red, Colgate dropped an 8-7 decision to Lafayette in its Patriot League opener on Feb. 22.
• Colgate owns a 2-1 Patriot League mark, picking up wins over Bucknell (9-8) and Boston U. (7-5), while stumbling against Lafayette (8-7).
• Anchoring the Colgate offense is junior All-Patriot League attackman Ryan Walsh who has posted 28 points on 18 goals and 10 assists.  He enters today’s game boasting a 41-game point-scoring streak which is the fourth longest behind Duke’s Jordan Wolf (48), St. John’s Kieran McArdle (44) and Albany’s Miles Thompson (41).  Thirteen (8-5) of Walsh’s 28 points have been scored in Patriot League contests.
• Four other players have turned in 10 points or more this season, including sophomore attack Kevin Adams whose 15 points have been scored off goals, while senior attack Brendon McCann has split his gave evenly with 17 points on 10 goals and 7 assists.  McCann is coming off a 3-goal, 1-assist performance against Cornell.
• The Raiders have relied upon the play of freshman Brandon Burke in goal to lead the defense.  Burke owns a 7.07 goals-against average and a 57.6 save percentage.  Prior to Tuesday’s game against Coglate where he surrendered 15 goals and made 10 saves, Burke had been ranked fifth nationally in saves per game (9.43) and was No. 2 in GAA, giving up 5.93 goals per game.  In his three Patriot League appearances, he has posted a 7.00 GAA and a 56.2 save percentage.
• Junior middie Alex Kinnealey has been strong at the faceoff position, winning 61.3 percent (84-137) of the draws he has taken this season, including 59.6 percent (31-52) in conference play.  Going into the Cornell game, he stood 10th nationally in faceoff winning percentage (62.7).  Additionally, he paces the team with 50 ground balls.
• All-league defenseman Bobby Lawrence has been stellar in his senior season, producing a team-best 17 caused turnovers.  He is ranked 11th nationally in caused turnovers per game  (2.1).

Navy vs. Colgate – The Series
• Navy leads the all-time series with Colgate, 11-5, including wins in 3 of the last 5 contests.
• The two teams have met 14 times since the Midshipmen joined the Patriot League in 2004.  During that span, Navy has produced a 9-5 record and outscored Colgate, 144-111.
• Five of the last six contests between the two programs has been decided by one goal, including the 2012 contest in which Navy’s Sam Jones targeted a shot with 3.4 seconds remaining in the game to lead the Mids to a 12-11 victory.
• Today’s contest marks the eighth game played in Annapolis with Navy holding a 5-2 advantage.  Colgate has won each of the last two games played at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, scoring a 10-9 win in 2009 and a 5-4 decision in 2011.
• Navy and Colgate have twice faced one another in the Patriot League Tournament and have been met with split results.  In 2007, the Mids claimed a 15-9 win over the Raiders in the championship game, before dropping the program’s first Patriot League Tournament contest at the 2008 semifinals against eventual champion Colgate.

Kiernan Among Nation’s Top Poles
• Senior long stick defensive midfielder Pat Kiernan is one of the best at his position in the country.
• Kiernan, a 2014 Preseason All-American, was among the national leaders in both caused turnovers (12th, 2.00) and ground balls (32nd, 5.23) last season.
• He is Navy’s record holder for career caused turnovers (61), a stat introduced in 2009.  With 26 caused turnovers last season, he finished the year ranked No. 3 on the Mids’ single-season list.  He is also ranked ninth (14, 2012) and tied for 13th (11, 2011) on the chart.
• He is tied with ninth-place Matt Russell (2003-06) on the career ground balls list with 159, trailing eighth-place Chad Donnelly who posted 172 from 1997-2000.  Meanwhile, he turned in 68 grounders last spring to etch his name in at ninth on the Mids’ single-season chart.  It’s the most ground balls by a Navy player since 2008 when draw specialist Mikelis Visgauss grabbed 80.
• He is also 19th on the Mids’ career faceoff wins list, winning 24 of the 54 draws (44.4) he has taken.
• Kiernan has produced 13 career points, including  a program-record 10 in 2012.
• He is tied for seventh in the country among active poles with 13 points.
• Kiernan is tied as the all-time leader in career points scored by a Navy defensemen, while his 10 goals are the most at Navy.

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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 makes quick turnaround to visit Georgetown Wednesday

Posted on 18 March 2014 by WNST Staff

Loyola Greyhounds at Georgetown Hoyas

Wednesday, March 19, 2014  |  6:00 p.m.

Washington, D.C. | Multi-Sport Field | CBS Sports Network

 

Quick Hits About The ’Hounds

Loyola University Maryland hits the road for a non-conference, midweek game on Wednesday, March 19, in the Nation’s Capital. The Greyhounds will take on Georgetown University at 6 p.m. on Multi-Sport Field.

Wednesday’s game will air live on CBS Sports Network, the second of four Loyola regular-season games that will be broadcast by the channel.

The Greyhounds played their third one-goal game of the season on Saturday, edging Army, 7-6, to move to 3-0 in the Patriot League. Loyola is now 2-1 in those one-goal games.

The one-goal win came exactly one month following the last Greyhounds’ one-goal win (Penn State). In between, Loyola won four games by an average of 10.5 goals, none by less than seven.

Loyola leads the nation in fewest turnovers per game, averaging 10.43 per game after committing eight against the Black Knights.

Kevin Ryan moved up to third nationally in shot percentage with two goals on two shots against Army. He has scored goals on 59.1 percent of his shots (13-of-22) this year.

 

Last Time Out

Jack Runkel made a season-high 19 saves, and the Greyhounds held off a late Army charge for a 7-6 Patriot League victory on Saturday at Ridley Athletic Complex.

Army took a 4-3 lead with the first goal of the third quarter, a Shea Mullins tally at 12:37, but Loyola scored four in a row to lead 7-4 on Pat Frazier’s first career goal with 8:52 left in regulation.

The Black Knights, however, got to goals in transition, the first by John Glesener and the second from Will Mazzone, to pull within a score with 2:18 remaining.

Army had possession and two shots in the final 30 seconds, but both went wide of the cage, and the Greyhounds came away with the win.

Nikko Pontrello and Kevin Ryan both scored twice for the Greyhounds, and Justin Ward had three assists. Pat Laconi scored a goal and had an assist for Loyola, as well.

Runkel’s 19 saves came against 45 total Army shots. He made five saves in the first, second and fourth quarters and four in the third.

Joe Fletcher had five ground balls to lead Loyola, while Frazier had three and a caused turnover.

 

Turn On The Television

Wednesday’s game will be broadcast live, nationally on CBS Sports Network. Dave Ryan will call the play-by-play, and Evan Washburn will handle the analysis of the action.

The game is the second of four that will feature the Greyhounds on the network. Home games against Bucknell University and Johns Hopkins University, and Loyola’s March 9 win over Duke University was also televised.

 

In The Polls

With the 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

Georgetown and the Greyhounds will play for the 37th time in series history on Wednesday. The Greyhounds have a 30-6 advantage in the previous 36 meetings, thanks in large part to a 20-game winning streak from 1974-2001.

The Hoyas were victorious in five of six from 2002-2007, but the Greyhounds are currently riding a six-game winning streak in the rivalry.

Last season, Loyola caused 17 Georgetown turnovers, and six of the Greyhounds’ goals in a 13-8 win came via transition or unsettled situations.

Nine scored goals for Loyola in the game, led by four from Zach Herreweyers and two by Harry Kutner. Justin Ward added a goal and four assists. Joe Fletcher had six ground balls and tied Josh Hawkins for team-high honors with three caused turnovers.

 

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 35-7 during that stretch (17-1 in 2012, 11-5 in 2013 and 6-1 this season) for a .833 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).

 

Stopping Shots

After opening the season with a .214 save percentage in the opener at Virginia, Jack Runkel has played to a .670 mark, saving 73 out of 109 shots on goal he’s faced. In the last five games against Towson, Holy Cross, Lehigh, Duke and Army, Runkel has 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 7.27 this season and a cumulative saves percentage of .618 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 7.86 goals against average and .559 saves percentage; his record between the pipes is 33-6. 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.

 

On Target

Kevin Ryan scored twice against Army, and the senior midfielder needed just two shots against the Black Knights, raising his season shooting percentage to .591. He has scored goals on 13-of-22 shots this season, and his .591 shooting percentage is ranked third in the nation.

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 converted on both of its extra-man opportunities against Army, raising its season conversion percentage to 59.1 through seven games. In 21 man-up possessions, the Greyhounds have scored 13 goals, and the .591 mark is good for fourth in the nation.

Nikko Pontrelo 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 seven of its games this season, and it has had four stretches of seven or more unanswered goals. In all the Greyhounds have 12 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.

 

Pontrello Putting Up Points

Nikko Pontrello had his seventh multi-goal game is as many contests to open the season on Saturday when he scored twice against Army. The game came less than a week after he scored five against Duke. He also tallied four at Lehigh and he set a career-high with six goals at Holy Cross. The junior attacker scored twice in the opener against Virginia, and he then recorded three versus both Penn State and Towson. His final goal against the Nittany Lions came 19 seconds into overtime and lifted Loyola to a 12-11 win. In his career, Loyola is now 8-0 in games that he scored three or more goals.

Pontrello leads the Greyhounds with 24 goals and 29 points through six 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 third nationally in goals per game (4.0), while he is second and seventh in points per game (4.83).

 

Record-Setting Quarterback

Justin Ward has continued to be the quarterback of the Greyhounds’ offense this year, passing out 16 combined assists in the last four contests. He is third in the nation, and tops in the Patriot League, with 3.14 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 three against Army, Ward now has 89 in his career. Gary Hanley holds the all-time Loyola record with 160 assists. Ward is also 15th in school Division I history in total points with 133.

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.

 

Midfield Scoring

Entering the 2014 season, Loyola was looking to replace five of its top seven offensive midfielders from a year ago, a group that included All-American Davis Butts, as well as first middies Chris Layne and Sean O’Sullivan. As a group, the five contributed 47 goals, 29 assists and 76 points, right at 25 percent of the Greyhounds total in each.

This year, Loyola’s first and second midfield units have scored more than 45 percent of the team’s goals, a total of 44. Kevin Ryan scored eight goals combined against Holy Cross and Lehigh, and he is second on the team with 13 total. Matt Sawyer’s six versus Duke moved him into fourth with 10 total, and Tyler Albrecht is fifth on the squad with eight goals, while Brian Sherlock has six goals and five assists.

 

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 30 ground balls, and he leads the squad with 11 caused turnovers. His 56 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, bringing his season totals to five goals an one assist. He now has 10 of each in his four-year career. His 10 caused turnovers this season have brought his career total to 51, fifth-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 seven games, Schultz has scored 11 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.

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