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Lacrosse Weekly (2/26/08) OR Time For A New Lax Season

Our boy DBren is a face off expert
Matt Glaude, the founder and my former partner in this endeavor is a lacrosse nut. He lived and breathed it while at Syracuse, and he carried that passion over to this notebook. That enthusiasm was brought to a feature known as Lacrosse Monday. Seeing as I am not Matt, and still should cover the lax beat, we start Orange::44’s brand new feature, creatively titled Lacrosse Weekly. This feature will be seen on this site every Tuesday, Wednesday, or maybe even Thursday. That is the genius of calling it Lacrosse Weekly. I just have to do it once a week on any day I choose. Nice! Anyway, to the lacrosse.

We start with the hometown heroes of the Orange. Syracuse won against an Army team that beat them just a year before, with a final score of 8 to 7. The complete box score is here. I will do some analysis but I just wanted to point out the fact I had to link it from the Army Athletics website because the box score on Syracuse’s site does not work. Excellent work guys.

Mike Leveille led the Orange in goals with four. Greg Niewieroski had the hat trick. The eighth and final goal came from Stephen Keogh. Leveille also led in the assist category with two, giving him six points on the day. Face off Specialist Danny Brennan won 12 out of 16 he took, as well as seven ground balls. Syracuse overall won 13 of 18 face off attempts.

Syracuse had 43 shots overall, which is huge compared to only 22 for Army. Limiting the shots of the opponents is key to a more successful season for Syracuse. This is huge that Syracuse was able to do it to a team not named Villanova. Army is a very capable team and the fact that Syracuse had such a stark difference in shots shows the team is not something to dismiss.

Syracuse also had 38 ground balls, which is also big compared to Army’s 23. Syracuse’s defense, being the big contentious point that needed improvement from last season, has shown massive improvement. This can be easily shown from this stat. Syracuse’s shifting on defense has greatly improved, the defensive packages conceived by Lelan Rogers have been working well, and Syracuse has been limiting shots on the goalie vastly as compared to last season.

Syracuse is looking good so far, and will have a real test at the 2008 Face Off Classic at 12:00pm on Saturday March 1st in Baltimore, Maryland. #7 Syracuse will take on #3 Virginia, a team that Syracuse lost to in the National Semi-Final Game in 2006, and a team that beat Syracuse last season in the same game by a score of 8 to 11. This is exactly the type of outcome that Syracuse continually had last season, much like with Army. This year the Army outcome was different, therefore logic would dictate that the Virginia game this season could be different as well.

The ladies, while I have not heard much about them this season, have put in two solid routings of their opponents, to have earned the new ranking of #4 in the nation. They beat Dartmouth on Sunday by a score of 18 to 5. The women's box score and recap is here from Congratulations to the ladies and keep up the good work.

Back to the men, as there were a lot of notable games, and a few upsets:

#19 University of Maryland-Baltimore County was trounced by unranked Rutgers by a score of 13 to 4 on Sunday. A possible Big East team in the future, Rutgers dismantled an NCAA Tournament team of the last few years.

#10 Notre Dame also beat Penn State on Sunday by a score of 15 to 9.

#7 Maryland pulled the upset on #4 Georgetown by a score of 11 to 6. Maryland assents to the rank of #4 and Georgetown fell to #9.

#1 Hopkins handled the Great Danes of Albany (#12) by a score of ten to five.

#17 Loyola beat Maryland rival #14 Towson 13 to 8.

#3 Virginia squeaked by Stony Brook 15 to 13.

Other scores from Inside Lacrosse are found here. The new Inside Lacrosse rankings are here.
Next weekend with the 2008 Face Off Classic, the epicenter of college lacrosse will again be in Baltimore, Maryland. Stay tuned next week for more college lacrosse coverage. I just hope you don’t run into Marlo Stanfield while walking around the Inner Harbor. If you do, just let McNulty and Lester know you saw him running around. I doubt Marlo is a big lax fan though.


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