PHILADELPHIA – The University of Pennsylvania men’s lacrosse team is at the Ivy League Tournament at Harvard this weekend. The Quakers face Cornell in Friday’s first semifinal at 5 p.m.; that game will be followed by Harvard and Yale at 8 p.m. The winners of Friday’s games will meet Sunday at noon.
GAME 13 – #10 PENN (9-3, 4-2) vs. #11 CORNELL (11-3, 5-1)
Friday, May 2, 2014 * 5 p.m.
Ivy League Tournament * Harvard Stadium (Cambridge, Mass.)
TV: ESPN3.com (Eamon McAnaney, Matt Ward)
The Penn-Cornell Series
*The Quakers and the Big Red are meeting for the 89th time in men’s lacrosse; Cornell has dominated the series, leading 62-23 with three ties included.
*Cornell has won the last eight meetings between these programs; in fact, Penn has beaten the Big Red just two times since 1998, in 2004 and again in 2006 (both in Philly).
*On March 22, Cornell and Penn played on Adams Field in Penn Park, the Quakers’ first time playing on the three-year-old field. The Big Red dominated the middle two quarters, outscoring Penn 9-2 in that span, to win easily, 17-9. Penn has not lost a game since then, winning six in a row.
Penn in the Ivy League Tournament
This is Penn’s third appearance in the five-year-old Ivy League Men’s Lacrosse Tournament...
*Friday will mark Penn’s first game against Cornell in the short history of the Tournament.
*In 2011, Penn was the second seed and lost
12-8 to Harvard in a game played at Cornell; the Quakers had beaten the Crimson 7-6 in double overtime in the regular season.
*Last year, Penn was the third seed and lost 9-6 to Yale in a game played at Cornell; the Quakers had lost to the Bulldogs 7-6 in overtime in the regular season.
*For the third straight week, Penn is ranked 10th in this week’s USILA national coaches poll, its highest ranking of the season; the Quakers started the season ranked 18th. The other Ivy League teams currently ranked are Cornell (11), Harvard (12) and Yale (15), while Brown and Princeton are among six teams also receiving votes.
*Penn also is ranked 10th in the Warrior Inside Lacrosse media poll, and 11th in the Lacrosse Magazine weekly poll.
*Looking at Penn’s schedule, five of the Quakers’ 12 regular-season opponents from this season are ranked in this week’s USILA poll: Denver (2), Duke (4), Cornell (11), Harvard (12), and Yale (15). Penn has gone 3-2 against those teams, with the wins coming over the Pioneers, Bulldogs and Crimson. Three other opponents -- Brown, Princeton and Saint Joseph’s -- are receiving votes this week; the Quakers beat the Bears and the Hawks, and lost to the Tigers.
*According to Laxpower.com, Penn entered the week fifth in Strength of Schedule, or SOS -- behind ACC schools Syracuse, Notre Dame, Duke and Virginia -- and third in the NCAA’s Ratings Percentage Index, or RPI (behind the Orange and the Blue Devils).
*This is nothing new for Penn under Head Coach Mike Murphy; last year, the Quakers’ Strength of Schedule was ranked second at the end of the season (behind only Princeton), while in 2011 it ranked first.
Quaker Notemeal of Note
*Penn’s 9-3 regular-season record was the program’s best since 2006, when the Quakers went 10-3 before a first-round NCAA loss at Johns Hopkins.
*The only other years in program history that Penn had a better regular-season record than this year are 1988 (10-3), 1985 (10-3), 1984 (12-1), 1983 (10-2) -- all of those under head coach Tony Seaman -- and 1977 (10-1) when the head coach was James “Ace” Adams; in all of those seasons, the Quakers advanced to NCAA Championship play.
*Penn’s six-game win streak is the longest by the program since the 2006 team started the year 6-0.
*After losses at Princeton and at home to Cornell, Penn ended Ivy League play with four straight wins. The last time the Quakers won four conference games in a row? Try 1988, when they lost to Yale to open Ivy play, then reeled off five straight wins to tie for the title with the Bulldogs.
*While Penn has no 20-goal scorers and only one player with at least 30 points (Nick Doktor, 32), the Quakers have eight players with at least 12 points; 14 with at least three goals; and six others who have scored once.
*Penn has had at least six different goal scorers in all but two games this season, including double-digit goal scorers against Saint Joseph’s (12), Towson (11) and St. John’s (11); in those other two games, at Duke and at Yale, the Quakers had five different players score the team’s six goals.
*After allowing 53 goals in a four-game span from March 1-22 (13.3 gpg), Penn has allowed just 42 goals in its last six games (7.0 gpg).