• Riding its longest winning streak since 2009, the Navy men’s lacrosse team (5-3, 3-1 Patriot League) will play host to seventh-ranked Lehigh (9-1, 2-0 Patriot League) Friday evening in a nationally-televised broadcast … face off is set for 7:00 pm at Navy-Marine Corps Stadium.
• Navy is coming off a huge upset victory over 12th-ranked Colgate last Saturday after sophomore attackman Sam Jones slipped the defense on the crease with 3.4 seconds left in the game to lead the Midshipmen to a 12-11 victory … while the Mids ran their winning streak to four in a row, they snapped the Raiders’ streak at five straight.
• Lehigh, meanwhile, scored its program-record eighth-straight victory when it dealt Holy Cross a 12-3 loss last Saturday in Bethlehem … junior attackman David DiMaria paced the Mountain Hawks with a seven-point effort that featured a career-high four goals.
• Friday’s contest will be televised by CBS Sports Network with Dave Ryan (play by play) and former Syracuse All-American defenseman Steve Panarelli (analyst) calling he action.
Taking the Field In …
10 Navy has lost just five games (51-5) when scoring 10 or more goals since the start of the 2004 season … Navy is 5-0 this season when reaching 10 goals … Lehigh has scored 10 or more goals in five of its 10 games, winning all five.
9 Senior attackman Taylor Reynolds owns nine-career multi-point contests, including each of the last six games.
8 Tucker Hull in one of only three players in program history to post three eight-point games in a season – 6-2 vs. VMI, 3-5 at Lafayette and 3-5 vs. Holy Cross … he joins Mike Buzzell (1978) and Dennis Nealon (1990) … no Navy player has ever recorded four eight-point games in a season.
7 Sophomore long pole Pat Kiernan has produced nine points on seven goals and two assists over his career … the seven goals are tied as the most by a defenseman in school history, along with Bucky Morris (2001-04) and Zack Schroeder (2007-10).
6 Since 2004, Navy owns an amazing 54-2 record when holding its opponents to six or fewer goals, including a 12-1 mark in the last four seasons combined … Lehigh has scored seven or more goals in just three (2004, ‘09, ‘11) of the previous 30 games.
5 Looking to add to its four-game winning streak, the last time Navy was able to put together five-consecutive wins was in 2008 when the Mids captured wins over Mount St. Mary’s, Lafayette, Lehigh, Holy Cross, Bucknell and Colgate from Feb. 29 to March 23.
4 Attackman Sam Jones led Navy with four goals and an assist in last year’s Lehigh contest.
3 At least one Navy players has scored a hat trick in seven of the eight games this season … Towson is the lone game in which a player did not reach three goals.
2 Tucker Hull is ranked No. 2 in the country in points per game, averaging 5.13 … his is also ranked 15th in goals per game (2.63) and fourth in assists per game (2.50).
1 Over the last four seasons, 24 (10-14) of the Mids’ 68 contests have been decided by one goal … Navy had lost five-straight one-goal games prior to last week’s 12-11 victory over No. 12 Colgate.
More on the Mountain Hawks
• Off to its best start in program history, fifth-year head coach Kevin Cassese has led Lehigh to a 9-1 record including a 2-0 mark in Patriot League action this spring … the nine wins are the most by any Div. I team this season, however just a handful of teams have played 10 games to date.
• The Mountain Hawks’ lone setback of the season was a 17-7 loss to Villanova in the second week of the season … Villanova, ranked 12th in the country this week, is coming off a huge win over Syracuse last weekend … since that loss on Feb. 18, Lehigh has won eight in a row, including wins over nationally-ranked programs Penn (10-4), North Carolina (9-8), Yale (11-7) and Penn State (9-5).
• Lehigh owns a balanced offensive arsenal that including five players with 10 or more goals and seven players with double-digit points … anchoring the offense, however, is junior attackman David DiMaria who leads the team in points (33), goals (16) and assists (17) … none of DiMaria’s goals have been scored when a man up.
• Junior attackman Dante Fantoni has been nicked up this season … despite missing three games, he is the team’s second-leading scorer with 18 points on 10 goals and eight assists.
• Junior Ryan Snyder has had a fine season at the faceoff “x” where he has won 54.3 percent (82-151) of his draws … additionally he leads the team with 62 ground balls.
• Collectively, Lehigh’s defense is ranked No. 1 in the country, surrendering just 5.6 goals per game.
• Freshman goalkeeper Matthew Poillon has made a case to be named this year’s Patriot League Rookie of the Year … he owns a stingy 5.57 goals-against average, which is ranked No. 1 in the nation, and has turned away 62.6 percent of the shots he has faced, which is No. 2 in the country.
• Junior defensive midfielder Noah Molnar and junior defenseman Mike Noone are atop the league’s leader board in caused turnovers with Molnar pacing the team with 14 and Noone has contributed 13.
• Lehigh is one of the second-ranked extra-man unit in the country, scoring goals on 20 of its 31 attempts for a 64.5 scoring percentage … attackmen Adam Johnston and Kyle Stiefel have been the go-to guys for Cassese this season … the two have combined for 12 of the 20 extra-man strikes with Johnston leading the way with seven.
• The Mountain Hawks have limited their turnovers this season … they are ranked No. 4 nationally, turning the ball over 13.0 times per outing.
• Friday’s contest between Navy and Lehigh marks the 31st game in a series that began in 1910 … the Midshipmen own a commanding 28-2 series advantage.
• The Mids won the first three contests before suffering their first loss in the series, a 4-3 decision in 1913 … Navy had won 25 in a row against the Mountain Hawks until last year’s stunner in Bethlehem when Lehigh dealt the Mids a 14-10 loss in Bethlehem.
• Friday’s game marks the first time Navy and Lehigh have met in Annapolis since 2008 … the two played one another three-straight years in Bethlehem … four of the last five games, in fact, have been contested in Bethlehem.
• Navy owns a 21-1 series advantage in games played in Annapolis … the Mids’ lone loss at home was the 1913 game.
• Since Navy joined the league in 2004, the Mids have scored double-figure goals in six of the 10 contests … Navy has produced nine goals in three of the other four games during that stretch.
• Navy and Lehigh have met twice in the Patriot League Tournament, 2005 and 2006, with the Mids winning both.
2011 Navy-Lehigh Recap
• Lehigh outscored Navy 8-2 over the final 24 minutes and went on to defeat the Midshipmen, 14-10, at Ulrich Sports Complex in Bethlehem, Pa. in what was both teams’ league opener.
• Navy, which trailed 6-5 at the half, took an 8-6 lead early in the third quarter on a goal by senior midfielder Andy Warner (13:40) and two straight by freshman attackman Sam Jones (9:41 and 9:04). The second goal by Jones was his fourth of the night.
• Lehigh stopped Navy’s run with 7:47 left in the third on a goal by Jonathan Stumpf and then tied the game at eight when Stumpf assisted on a Dante Fantoni goal. Lehigh would take the lead for good with 1:06 left in the third when Fantoni scored his second goal of the night and then Ryan Snyder won the faceoff and went right down the field and fired a shot by goalkeeper RJ Wickham to give Lehigh a 10-8 lead heading into the fourth.
• The Mountain Hawks would make it six-consecutive goals on back-to-back tallies by David DiMaria and Adam Johnston to make it 12-8 and the Mids would never pull closer than three goals the rest of the way.
• Navy outshot Lehigh, 35-32, but the Mountain Hawks dominated the faceoff (18-9) and the ground ball (32-24) statistics. Navy was just 1-5 (.200) on extra-man opportunities.
• Jones led the Mids with four goals, while Warner had two. Jay Mann, Brian Striffler, Nikk Davis and Michael Jones, who saw his first action in a Navy uniform, scored one goal apiece. Tucker Hull, Sam Jones and Warner each added an assist. Meanwhile, Wickham produced 11 saves between the pipes for the Mids.
• First-year Navy head coach Rick Sowell has a handful of connections with the Lehigh coaching staff.
• Sowell served as an assistant coach for the goal-medal winning Team USA squad at the 2010 World Championships in England … a team in which Lehigh head coach Kevin Cassese was a member.
• All three of Lehigh’s assistant coaches graduated from Stony Brook with Sowell having coached 2007 grad Brendan Callahan and 2011 grad Tom Compitello … Callahan, an All-East goalkeeper, served as team captain in 2007, Sowell’s first season as head coach at Stony Brook … Compitello was an All-American as a junior, producing 37 goals and 35 assists to help lead the Seawolves to the NCAA Quarterfinals … Errol Wilson graduated in 2006 from Stony Brook.
Mids Join the Rankings
• Coming off a 12-11 victory over 12th-ranked Colgate this past Saturday, the Navy men’s lacrosse team has entered the Nike/Inside Lacrosse Media Poll for the first time since March 8, 2010 … the 5-3 Midshipmen have won four-straight games to position themselves as the No. 19 team in the country according to the weekly media poll.
• While Navy has received votes from the media over the last two seasons, the last top-20 ranking the Mids received was No. 13 in week four of the 2010 campaign.
• Navy, who finished the 2010 season with a 7-8 record and the program’s first losing season since 2003, fell out of the rankings on March 15 following a 15-8 loss to Lafayette … the Mids would later avenge that loss against the Leopards in the Patriot League Tournament, but fell short of claiming the title with an 11-8 loss to top-seeded Army.
• Six of Navy’s 12 opponents are ranked among the nation’s top 20 in this week’s installation of the Nike/Inside Lacrosse Media Poll, including top-ranked Johns Hopkins … additionally, four of the seven Patriot League teams stand among the top 20, led by Lehigh at No. 7, followed by Bucknell (16), Colgate (17) and Navy (19).
Jones Chosen as Patriot League Offensive Player of the Week
• For the second time this season, Navy sophomore attackman Sam Jones has been named the Patriot League Offensive Player of the Week, picking up this week’s citation after scoring the game-winning goal on Saturday against 12th-ranked Colgate.
• In addition to Jones, Lehigh’s Mike Noone (defense) and Matt Poillon (Goalkeeper) along with Bucknell’s David Dickson (rookie) were among those players recognized by the conference office as players of the week at their respective positions.
• Jones paced the Mids with a three-goal, two assist performance against Colgate, but it was his goal with 3.4 seconds left in the game that led to Navy’s first victory over a ranked team since snapping its 36-game losing streak to Johns Hopkins on April 24, 2010.
• Jones, who is Navy’s second-leading scorer with 24 points on 13 goals and 11 assists, came into the game having scored just two points in games played away from Annapolis this season. Meanwhile, Colgate was the lone team to hold Jones without a point a year ago.
• Navy sophomore attackman Sam Jones slipped the defense on the crease with 3.4 seconds left in the game to lead the Midshipmen to a 12-11 victory over 12th-ranked Colgate last Saturday in Hamilton, N.Y.
• The win gave the Mids their first four-game winning streak since 2009 when Navy claimed victories over Mount St. Mary’s, Lafayette, Lehigh and Holy Cross.
• Navy snapped a four-game losing streak when the opponent has picked up more ground balls … Colgate owned a slight 29-24 advantage.
• The win marked the program’s first one-goal victory since Navy earned a memorable 9-8 overtime win against Johns Hopkins on April 24, 2010 in Annapolis. The Mids lost all four one-goal games a year ago and dropped a disappointing 9-8 decision to North Carolina earlier this season after the Tar Heels scored the game’s final four goals.
• The win was also Navy’s first win over a ranked team since that same victory over Hopkins … the Mids had lost five in a row against ranked programs.
• Just eight of the 23 goals were assisted in the contest, four by each team.
• The game was played without a single penalty by either team … the last time Navy was not penalized was the Feb. 12, 2011 game against VMI … the last time a Navy opponent was not flagged was the May 9, 2009 NCAA Tournament game against Duke.
• Senior faceoff specialist Logan West struggled at the “x”, but scored his first-two collegiate goals.
• Sophomore midfielder Erik Hoffstadt saw his five-game point-scoring streak snapped against Colgate after being held without a shot.
• Navy has played 70 one-goal games (of 235) since the start of the 1996 season, winning just 29 (41.4) of those contests.
• Among those 70 games, 25 of them have gone into extra minutes with Navy winning 11 (44.0).
• Over the last five seasons, 24 of the Mids’ 64 contests have been decided by one goal and Navy has produced wins in just 10 of the 24.
• The Mids had lost five-consecutive one-goal decisions dating back to 2010 before Sam Jones’ goal with 3.4 seconds left lifted Navy over 12th-ranked Colgate on March 24.
• Navy is now 1-1 this season in one-goal decisions, giving up a four-goal advantage over No. 4 North Carolina (2-25) to lose, 9-8.
• Outside of this year, which is yet to be completed, Navy has played at least three one-goal games every year since 1996 … in 2007, Navy played a program-record seven one-goal games, including five that were decided in overtime.
• Last spring, the Mids were 0-4 in one-goal decisions, dropping a 9-8 decision at Loyola (2-19), a 12-11 double-overtime loss at Bucknell (3-7), a 5-4 heart breaker to Colgate and a 9-8 decision at Georgetown … three of the four one-goal losses were on the road.