Welcome back to Under the Radar! If you’re joining us for the first time, this is where we take a look at some of the lesser-covered teams, players, and stories of the week. We’re changing things up after Week 1, and will be bringing you our Under-the-Radar Team of the Week, Under-the-Radar Player of the Week and Under-the-Radar Storylines of the Week as THREE (that’s right, count ’em THREE) separate posts. This post is bringing you the Under-the-Radar Team of the Week, which is none other than… (drum roll please) Villanova Men’s Lacrosse!
Villanova Men’s Lacrosse: Top 5 Plays v. Hofstra
Oh, Richmond. I so want to talk more about you here, but upsetting a top ten team does not qualify you for the UTR spotlight. Instead, we’re talking about the Villanova Wildcats (everywhere, put your hands up in the air!). The Villanova Men’s Lacrosse win over Yale looks so freaking good after that Yale-PSU game. Ironically, the Wildcats’ lone loss thus far? Penn State.
However, since their season-opening loss, the Wildcats have won two nail-biters, first the Yale game and now over a very solid (and previously undefeated) Hofstra squad. Despite a bit of a rough start for senior goalie Nick Testa (44% SVR), Villanova has been lead to both wins by its defense, which has held opponents to an average of just 24 shots on goal. Off to a particularly strong start is senior LSM TJ Comizio, who already has 5 CTs and 12 GBs. Offensively, the return of do-it-all midfielder Joey Froccaro (who missed 2018 due to injury) has been a big boost, but it’s the rookie midfielder Matt Campbell who has stepped straight in to lead the team in scoring.
Obviously, the Villanova Men’s Lacrosse team haven’t been perfect. Outside of sophomore Keegan Khan, the attack has been relatively lifeless thus far, and the Penn State game exposed the defense in a way nobody yet has repeated, but this is a squad that looks decently deep, and has proven already they can be a threat any given game day. With three of their next five games (vs Delaware, @ Drexel, @ Maryland) coming against teams either ranked or receiving votes, the Wildcats could be in for a climb in the rankings, and it’s not hard to look at the Yale game and think they could potentially give Maryland some trouble. However, the Wildcats seem more likely to be a threat in the Big East, where only Denver currently outranks them. If they can gain some some cohesion and find the right roleplayers in the next few weeks before Big East play, they could definitely be a threat to Denver’s assumed automatic bid.