Last week was one crazy week of lacrosse, so this rundown is special!!!! Four exclamation marks special. The D1 landscape is seemingly ever-evolving. Even if we wind up with many of the same old faces during championship weekend, the regular season dynamics are changing in a major way and the postseason will be following soon enough. Not one single team in this country is dominant. Everyone is beatable, and not just by one or two teams. Get comfortable with the idea of upsets, because they are the new normal. Look for undefeated teams to fall this weekend or next.
Week 7 D1 Lacrosse Scoreboard
13 Duke vs. Jacksonville 6
7 Colgate vs. Boston U. 18
19 Army vs. NJIT 6
18 Bryant vs. Siena 13
5 North Carolina vs. Richmond 6
18 Hobart vs. Canisius 11
3 Towson vs. Ohio State 6
10 UMass vs. UMass Lowell 8
16 Rutgers vs. Princeton 11
10 Wittenberg vs. Cleveland State 18
9 Penn State vs. Fairfield 8
6 NJIT vs. Rutgers 10
5 VMI vs. High Point 11
6 Jacksonville vs. Richmond 13
14 Detroit Mercy vs. Manhattan 11
13 Brown vs. Harvard 8
6 Boston U. vs. Bucknell 12
19 Furman vs. Bellarmine 6
7 Georgetown vs. Duke 12
6 Mount St. Mary’s vs. Bryant 5
9 Sacred Heart vs. Robert Morris 12
10 Hartford vs. UMass 12
15 Lehigh vs. Lafayette 7
18 Loyola vs. Navy 7
6 Mercer vs. Air Force 14
7 St. John’s vs. Drexel 9
9 Stony Brook vs. UMBC 12
12 Delaware vs. Saint Joseph’s 7
8 UMass Lowell vs. Binghamton 15
6 Vermont vs. Albany 17
17 Yale vs. Cornell 8
17 Hobart vs. Wagner 5
4 Holy Cross vs. Army 10
11 Hofstra vs. Providence 10
8 Penn vs. Princeton 17
7 Johns Hopkins vs. Syracuse 8 OT
12 Maryland vs. Villanova 13 OT
10 Virginia vs. Notre Dame 11 OT
7 Quinnipiac vs. Monmouth 8 2OT
17 North Carolina vs. Dartmouth 6
17 Canisius vs. Marist 6
16 Colgate vs. Siena 11
16 Ohio State vs. Denver 7
The Stat Freaks
This section highlights some of the best performances from the week. Each category has a specific range we’re looking for. It’s just fun to showcase some of the gaudy performances out there.
Freak of the Week: Chris Aslanian all the way.
The Hobart sophomore absolutely exploded against Wagner. Before this game, he had maxed out at 4 points in any one game, while getting held to zero twice. Talk about finding your matchup. His 13 points was enough that I needed to consult the NCAA record book. It ties him with several for 4th best all-time for a single game total. The most recent additions were Tucker James last year, Dylan Molloy in 2015, and Kieran McArdle in 2013. It’s also the career best for Casey
Offense: The Cutoff here is a combined 7 goals and/or assists
|Tucker James – Bryant: 5G, 5A|
|Jules Heninburg – Rutgers: 2G, 5A|
|Connor Fields – Albany (NY): 4G, 3A|
|Tom Moore – Binghamton: 5G, 3A|
|Chris Cloutier – North Carolina: 3G, 4A|
|Michael Sowers – Princeton: 5G, 4A|
|Pat Spencer – Loyola Maryland: 3G, 4A|
|Chris Aslanian – Hobart: 6G, 7A|
|Billy Nolan – UMBC: 5G, 2A|
|Michael Kraus – Virginia: 5G, 2A|
|Eric Fannell – Ohio St.: 3G, 4A|
|Tre Leclaire – Ohio St.: 5G, 2A|
Defense: For here, you need 8 GBs, CTs, and/or points
|Raaphorst, Cade Van Raaphorst – Duke: 5GB, 3CT|
|John Tachon – NJIT: 6GB, 3CT|
|Kyle Walsh – VMI: 5GB, 3CT|
|Colin Massa – Mercer: 7GB, 1CT|
|Joe Grossi – Binghamton: 8GB|
|JJ Ntshaykolo – Brown: 5GB, 3CT|
|Daniel Barber – Mt. St. Mary’s: 5GB, 3CT|
|Matt Farrell – Holy Cross: 6GB, 4CT|
|Eddie Bouhall – Lehigh: 4GB, 4CT|
|Chase York – Jacksonville: 6GB, 3CT|
|Nick Albanese – Sacred Heart: 8GB, 1CT|
|Neil Ruppert – Monmouth: 4GB, 4CT|
|Austin Smith – Saint Joseph’s: 7GB, 2CT|
|Scott Hooper – Virginia: 6GB, 3CT|
Faceoffs: Greater than 70%, at least 10 attempts
|Dan Grabher – Army West Point: 15/16|
|Kenny Massa – Bryant: 25/34|
|Jake Withers – Ohio St.: 11/13|
|Danny Tesler – Cleveland St.: 14/18|
|AJ Krstulovic – VMI: 8/10|
|Will Beecham – Mercer: 12/17|
|Hil Blaze – Furman: 14/19|
|Austin Macchi – Binghamton: 18/25|
|Paul Tornatore – St. John’s (NY): 12/17|
|Colin Keating – Providence: 12/15|
|Kenny Massa – Bryant: 10/13|
|Matthew Pedicine – Hobart: 13/17|
|Noah Rak – Massachusetts: 18/24|
|Jake Giaquinto – Sacred Heart: 11/15|
|Jon Garino – Maryland: 15/18|
|Collin Orr – Colgate: 22/30|
Goalies: Greater than 70%
|Christian Carson-Banister – Boston U.: 8/11 Saves|
|Tom Carey – Ohio St.: 8/11 Saves|
|JD Colarusso – Albany (NY): 16/21 Saves|
|Christian Klipstein – Bucknell: 16/22 Saves|
|Matt Vierheller – Mt. St. Mary’s: 15/20 Saves|
|AJ Barretto – Army West Point: 10/14 Saves|
|Jackson Brown – Hobart: 9/12 Saves|
|Benny Pugh – Richmond: 16/21 Saves|
The Big Upsets and Surprises
- 5 North Carolina vs. Richmond 6 The Spiders continue to provide stronger evidence that they do belong in the national conversation. The young team is playing some great lacrosse and this win over the defending champs is another data point in that argument.
- 3 Towson vs. Ohio State 6 Ohio State kept their unbeaten run going while Towson lost a chance to really build up their tournament resume.
- 10 UMass vs. UMass Lowell 8 This is ridiculous. The UMass system is happy, but the campus in Amherst has seen better times. They have not given us much of a reason to get excited for the minutemen this season. Almost losing to their state school cousins who just started a program recently is not a good look. Not good at all.
- 16 Rutgers vs. Princeton 11 Rutgers turned this win into a #1 ranking. With the other top teams losing, this solid win over a surging Tigers team was enough to push them and their unblemished record to the top of the media poll.
- 9 Penn State vs. Fairfield 8 Penn State looked so mortal in this game that it wasn’t even funny. Fairfield for their part really was playing some great lacrosse down in State College, but the high flying Penn State offense is starting to come down to earth. More games like in the Big Ten circuit will not be good for the Nittany Lions.
- 13 Brown vs. Harvard 8 Brown NEEDED this win. I had both of these teams in my top 20. Brown really high. I’ve been disappointed by both, but Harvard had been looking much better. The jury is still very much out on both teams, but with how wide open the Ivy league is right now, this might determine a head to head tiebreaker for a spot in the league tournament.
- 6 Boston U. vs. Bucknell 12 BU (the Boston one) finally lost, but not in the one I was expecting, and especially not by six points. I’m not going to freak out over this one too much and still really like BU’s chances in the league. It also shows what is possible in the Patriot League. Namely: anything.
- 18 Loyola vs. Navy 7 Navy is another team that has really been a disappointment this season. Loyola also is underwhelming after their final four appearance a season ago. Loyola should have won this game no matter what, but doing it the way they did is giving glimpses of their 2016 form.
- 11 Hofstra vs. Providence 10 Hofstra stayed undefeated, but this was pretty close at the end. More than anything, I think it proves that you need to keep an eye on Providence. They’ll been building something for a few seasons, they have some excellent talent, and are really getting things coming together. Their coaching staff was decimated with the departure of every assistant in the offseason for other opportunities, but the Friars are coming ready to play against anyone.
- 7 Johns Hopkins vs. Syracuse 8 What an ugly game this was. Neither wanted to push the tempo or take risks, which turned this into a grinder from start to finish. Syracuse scored the game tying goal very late, then was able to secure the win in OT off a pretty straightforward play. Just Bomberry flashing to the ball and having nice and easy inside finish. Both teams would benefit from tucking this game film in the back of the drawer.
- 12 Maryland vs. Villanova 13 This may have been the biggest shocker of Saturday. Villanova topping the Terps at home showed some major vulnerabilities in Maryland all over the field. Villanova is still wildly inconsistent, but at the point in this season, who isn’t?
- 10 Virginia vs. Notre Dame 11 Now this was a fantastic game to watch. Going into overtime, it looked like UVA was finally going to get the big ACC win they’ve been dying for over the past few seasons. Notre Dame is still the team to beat in that league, but the ‘Hoos came very close.
- 16 Ohio State vs. Denver 7 Did. Not. See. This. Coming. Ohio State owned the Pioneers to a degree nobody thought was possible. Sure they lose games, but not like this. Nobody was playing inspired, nor could they win their matchups. Ohio State could almost never make a mistake. Their D was disruptive, their fast breaks were scoring, and the faceoff unit held the best in check.
Rundown Conference Comparison
Conference play is starting up for everyone now, so we have to start looking ahead a little bit. There will be 8 AQ bids given out by the committee with two of the lowest ranked AQs in a playoff game. This of course mean, you have the 9 conference winners, plus 8 at large bids at stake, with ACC teams only able to get an at-large bid.
Looking at the table below, you can starting thinking about where those 8 at large spots will come from. The Big Ten and ACC each probably get in 3 teams each to start. There goes 5 spots right there. Towson and Hofstra both have a chance, but there are many games left in the CAA. America East is likely a 1 team league unless there’s a big upset like last year. The Patriot has the potential of two or even three if someone not named Army or Loyola win the league tournament. That doesn’t even bring us to the Big East, Ivy, or other conferences.
Basically, this will be a tough tournament to make. Do four ACC or Big Ten schools make it? They probably should, but there are so many variables now. It’s not even April and teams are in must-win mode.
|Record||%||# of Teams|
Weekend Games to Watch
This week, there are a couple matchups that really have my eye:
Denver vs. Towson: Both teams are trying to recover from losses to Ohio State. Good opportunity to take it out on each other. Oh. And the whole thing about Towson eliminating the Pios in last year’s NCAA tournament. Yeah, that also might matter.
Maryland vs. UNC: CHAMPIONSHIP REMATCH! OK, I really thought this would be a top 5 game, but whatever. They’re still both great teams and this will be about as emotional as these teams will get all regular season.
Ohio State vs. Notre Dame: THE Ohio State embarrassed Denver last weekend. Notre Dame fell to the Pios by a late goal. Ohio State could make a solid claim for the top team in the country with a convincing win. Notre Dame could continue to leave us all confused about who is actually even good anymore with a win.
Duke vs. Syracuse: The Blue Devils go up to the dome after steadily looking better each game. Syracuse has been doing nothing but playing in one goal games. This should be a great one in Cuse with big ACC implications.
UVA vs. Hopkins: Both of these teams need a win and bad. Hopkins is in a three game skid while UVA has had two straight OT games and has been alternating wins and losses over the past six games. That pattern says UVA will win. Patterns > actual analysis.