Men's Lacrosse Closes Out Non-Conference Play

PHILADELPHIA - Fresh off a 16-5 pasting of Saint Joseph's Wednesday night in first-year head coach Mike Murphy's home debut, the Penn men's lacrosse team steels itself for what figures to be a pair of much tougher matchups over the next few days. The Quakers will host Villanova Saturday at 3 p.m., following the women's game vs. Harvard at noon. Following that, on Monday, the Red and Blue is at Maryland to close out the non-conference portion of their schedule.

The Quakers and the Wildcats have met every year since 1998. They have split those 12 meetings, with five of them being decided by a single goal. Penn held the upper hand over the last few years, winning three in a row from 2006-08 (including a 7-6 win the last time these two teams played at Franklin Field, in 2008). Last year, though, Villanova earned the win on the Main Line.

The Quakers and the Terrapins have met each of the last six years, with Maryland dominating all six matchups - the closest result was 14-10, in 2007. Last year, at Franklin Field, the Terps rolled to a 9-2 decision. The year before that, it was 9-4. Overall, Maryland leads the series 9-0; the first three games were played from 1924-30.

Fast Start
While Penn, like all the Ivy League schools, started the season a little later than the rest of the country, the Quakers have worked quickly to catch up by playing all seven of their non-conference games in a 17-day period. Having already played five of the games, Penn concludes the run with these two games.

About Villanova
The Wildcats (3-1) -- an NCAA postseason participant a year ago -- are led in scoring by Jack Rice, who has eight goals, followed by Paul Webber (6), Matt Bell (5) and Michael Vigilante (5). Five other players have at least three goals this season. The primary feeder has been Kevin Cunningham, with 11 assists. At the other end, Dan Gutierrez has played every minute in goal and boasts an 8.75 goals-against average. He has 30 saves this season.

About Maryland
The Terps (3-0) -- a perennial ACC and national power -- enter the weekend with wins over Bellarmine, Georgetown and most recently Duke in overtime. Maryland is scheduled to host Towson Saturday afternoon. Grant Catalino enters the weekend as UM's top scorer; he had eight goals and seven assists for 15 points. Ryan Young also had seven assists to go with two goals, while Will Yeatman had six goals. Five other players had at least three goals. At the other end, Brian Phipps has a 9.91 goals-against average and a .524 save percentage.

Penn Notes
*Penn had little trouble Wednesday night, owning a 9-0 lead after one quarter and a 14-1 advantage at halftime. It was 15-1 after three quarters.

*Penn's first goal came just five seconds into the contest with SJU. The second goal came 50 seconds later. The third goal came 40 seconds after that.

*Freshman Rob Fitzpatrick led nine different players who scored in the game; he had four tallies. Sophomore John Conneely had three goals and two assists. Junior Al Kohart tallied two goals and two assists.

*Freshmen Greg Ives (2), Tim Schwalje and Nick Richards all scored their first collegiate goals in Wednesday's win.

*Senior defenseman Joe Kelly had his fourth collegiate point in the win, an assist. The long stick has two goals and two assists for his career.

*In the national stats, released Monday: senior captain Justin Lynch was second in ground balls per game (9.25); junior Corey Winkoff was seventh in assists per game (2.75); Lynch was 17th in faceoff win percentage (54 of 92, .587).

*Penn has had two players score at least one point in all five games so far this season -- Winkoff, who has a 13-game point-scoring streak dating back to last season, and Kohart.

*Perhaps coincidentally, those two happen to be tied at the top of Penn's scoring chart; both had 16 points (Kohart 11g, 5a; Winkoff 4g, 12a).

*The leading assist man for Penn since he arrived on campus, Winkoff has 55 dishes for his career; he needs six to crack the program's all-time Top 10.

*Kohart is Penn's leading goalscorer, with 11 tallies; he was MVP of the DU Face-Off Classic after his career-high five-goal performance against the host Pioneers.

*Kohart was joined on the Face-Off Classic All-Tournament Team by Lynch, senior Brendan Saxon, and sophomore Dan Savage.

*McMullen has eight goals this season, scoring twice in each of Penn's first four games. He entered the 2010 campaign with nine for his collegiate career.

*Conneely is tied with McMullen for second on the team with eight goals; he also had three assists for 11 points, good for third on the squad.

*Sophomore Dan Savage has 10 points (5g, 5a), while classmate Will Amling has scored five goals.

*Lynch has won 22 of 30 faceoffs over the last two games.

*Senior Chris Casey has started all five games in goal, compiling an 11.99 goals-against average and a .493 save percentage; in both games last weekend, he split halves in the cage with sophomore Joe Hegener (6.33 GAA, .565 save percentage).

*In Wednesday's win, junior Ted Rawlings (0 GA, 3 saves) and freshman Brendan Engelke (4 GA, 4 saves) saw their first collegiate action.