PHILADELPHIA – The University of Pennsylvania men’s lacrosse team closes out the Ivy League portion of its season this Saturday, making the long trip North to face Dartmouth. The Big Green are in last place in the Ivy League standings, but the Quakers cannot afford a slipup if they want to get the best possible seeding in the Ivy League Tournament (or, given the craziness of this season, even make it at all).
GAME 10 – #10 PENN (6-3, 3-2 Ivy League) at DARTMOUTH (1-8, 0-4)
Saturday, April 19, 2014 * 1 p.m.
Scully-Fahey Field (Hanover, N.H.)
TV: Ivy League Digital Network (there is a fee for this service)
The Penn-Dartmouth Series
The Quakers and the Big Green are meeting for the 67th time, with Penn holding a 39-27 lead in the series. The home team has won each of the last four meetings in this matchup, with Dartmouth taking a 7-6 decision two years ago and a 15-11 win four years ago in Hanover. Last year, of course, Penn rolled to an 11-2 victory on Franklin Field in Philadelphia.
The Big Green gave Princeton a solid game last weekend, falling to the Tigers 13-10 in New Jersey. Mike Olentine leads Dartmouth in goals (10) and points (15), while Jack McCormick (8g, 6a), KC Beard (7g, 4a) and Billy Heidt (8g, 2a) are the only other players with a double-digit point total. Blair Friedensohn has started all but one game in goal; he has a 13.70 goals-against average and a .421 save percentage.
After starting the season with four non-conference games, Penn is in the final week of a stretch that sees the Quakers playing Ivy League games for six straight Saturdays. They will finish the regular season next week with non-conference games at Towson (Tuesday) and against St. John’s (Friday at Radnor HS).
Around the League
Brown (1-3) and Cornell (3-1) will start things off on Saturday, facing off at noon in Ithaca, N.Y. Princeton (2-2) and Harvard (3-1) will face off at the same time as Penn-Dartmouth in Cambridge, Mass. Yale (3-2) has the bye this weekend; the Bulldogs are at Michigan Saturday at 4 p.m.
Looking Ahead to April 26
Penn will have the bye next weekend, so what are the Ivy matchups in the final weekend? Harvard is at Yale, Dartmouth is at Brown, and Princeton and Cornell are playing a neutral-site game in Bethpage, N.Y.
*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, and were 11th last week). The other Ivy League teams currently ranked are Yale (11), Cornell (12), Princeton (14) and Harvard (20).
*Penn also is ranked ninth in the Warrior Inside Lacrosse media poll, and 12th in the Lacrosse Magazine weekly poll.
*Looking at Penn’s schedule, six of the Quakers’ nine opponents so far this season are ranked in this week’s USILA poll: Duke (2), Denver (3), Yale (11), Cornell (12), Princeton (14) and Harvard (20). One other future opponent -- Towson, whom the Quakers will play Tuesday -- is receiving votes this week, as is a team Penn already beat this season (Villanova).
*Penn entered the week second in Strength of Schedule, or SOS (behind Syracuse), and third in the NCAA’s Ratings Percentage Index, or RPI (behind Duke and Syracuse).
*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.
*The Quakers have eight players with at least 10 points, 12 players with at least two goals, and six others who have scored once.
*Penn has had at least six different goalscorers in all but two games this season; in those other two, at Duke and at Yale, the Quakers had five different players score the team’s six goals in the game.
*Senior Zack Losco -- who had two goals and an assist last Saturday against Harvard, his second-straight three-point game and fourth this season -- also has 20 points (11g, 9a).
*Losco enters the Dartmouth game with at least one point in 18 straight games dating back to last season; the only other Penn player who has at least a point in every game this season is freshman Kevin Brown.
*Sophomore Nick Doktor tops Penn in assists (10) and is tied with Losco in points; after being shut out in Penn’s season opener, he has his 20 points in the last eight games (2.5 ppg).
*Junior Isaac Bock leads the Quakers with 13 goals, and has scored at least once in all but two games this season (Cornell, Harvard).
*Brown , who had the overtime game-winner last Saturday against Harvard, is the only other player with a double-figure goal total (12).
*Four other players have double-digit point totals: senior Drew Belinsky (14), junior Joe McCallion (13), sophomore Pat Berkery (12), and junior Chris Hupfeldt (10).
*Berkery scored twice against Brown, his second multi-goal game this season (also March 8 at Villanova).
*Hupfeldt had a goal and an assist last weekend against Harvard, giving him two straight two-point games and a six-game point-scoring streak.
*Two juniors scored their first collegiate goals in last weekend’s overtime victory against the Crimson, Andrew Staller and Mike Power.
Penn’s game at Towson will face off Tuesday at 7 p.m.