PHILADELPHIA - The Penn men’s lacrosse team closes out the 2008 season Saturday, hosting 18th-ranked Army at 4 p.m. on Franklin Field. The game is the second half of a lacrosse doubleheader, as the women are also at home Saturday afternoon against Temple.
The Quakers (5-7, 3-3 Ivy) will bid farewell to five seniors following this game -- Michael Glynn, Glenn Goebels, Tim Hlavin, David Matz and Max Mauro. Penn is looking to snap a four-game losing streak, but will face another stern test in the Black Knights who are still hoping (ever so slightly) for a shot at an NCAA Championship berth.
Saturday’s game will be the fourth time in the last five games Penn has faced a ranked opponent.
Some notes heading into Saturday’s game...
Army leads the series over Penn, 13-2; this is the first meeting since the Black Knights knocked off the Quakers, 12-7, on March 13, 2004.
The last time these teams met at Franklin Field was March 15, 2003, when Penn defeated Army, 13-8.
Saturday’s game marks the last home contest for five Penn seniors -- Michael Glynn, Glenn Goebels, Tim Hlavin, David Matz and Max Mauro.
To give you a sense of how much sixth-year head coach Brian Voelker has turned Penn’s program around, the Quakers have finished .500 or better in the Ivy League each of the last three seasons, and four times in the last five years. The last time Penn finished .500 or better in the conference three straight years was at the end of a seven-year run, from 1983-89. (compare that to the period from 1990-2003, when the Quakers finished .500 or better only four times total)
That said, Penn is looking to snap a four-game losing streak -- although three of the losses came against ranked teams.
Two Penn freshmen, attackman Corey Winkoff and midfielder Al Kohart, have earned Ivy League Rookie of the Week twice this season.
Kohart is the only Penn player to record a point in every game this season, while Winkoff has scored in all but one contest (Brown).
Junior attack Craig Andrzejewski had a 25-game point-scoring streak that was snapped at Princeton (4/8); coincidentally, the last time he had been held without a point was Penn’s previous game at Princeton, on April 11, 2006.
In the last 29 games he has played for Penn, Andrzejewski has been held to one or fewer points only four times -- but two of them have come in the last four contests (4/8 at Princeton, 4/19 at Maryland).
Andrzejewski leads Penn with 21 goals and 36 points; his points-per-game average (3.00) is tied for fourth among Ivy players, his assists-per-game average (1.25) is seventh, and his goals-per-game average (1.75) is tied for eighth.
Only a junior, Andrzejewski already has 102 career points. The last Penn player to reach 100 points? Craig’s older brother D.J. Andrzejewski, who scored exactly 100 from 2003-06.
Winkoff tops the Quakers and the Ivy League with 22 assists (1.83 per-game average); he had 15 in six Ivy games (2.50 average).
Winkoff is also ninth in the Ivy League in points per game (2.58).
Junior attack Alex Weber is second on the Penn team and 10th in the Ivy League with 20 goals (1.67 per game); he has scored in seven-straight games, and 11 out of 12 overall this season (held goalless only at Yale).
Kohart (17) joins Andrzejewski and Weber in reaching double figures in goals already this season, while juniors Garvey Heiderman (8g, 3a) and J.J. Lian (8g, 3a) have 11 points each.
Kohart leads the Ivy League in shots per game (8.17), while Andrzejewski is fifth (6.67) and Weber is ninth (5.83).
If you are wondering what happened to junior Casey O'Rourke, who started every game on attack last year for the Quakers, he is still around -- just as a midfielder. He has nine points (6g, 3a).
Playing behind a young defense -- veteran senior Mauro works with sophomores Tommy Dodge, Brett Hughes and Joe Kelly -- sophomore goalkeeper Chris Casey has a .444 save percentage and a 10.20 goals-against average.
Last Saturday vs. Towson, junior Greg Murray came on for the second half between the pipes, making eight saves and allowing seven goals.
The face-off unit is anchored by Lynch on the X -- he is fifth in the Ivies with a .552 win percentage and fifth with 4.42 ground balls per game -- with Kelly (44 ground balls) and junior Brian Weiss (36 GBs) coming in from the wings.
Army enters the weekend ranked 18th in the latest USILA national poll, but the Black Knights’ NCAA chances took a bit of a hit last weekend when they lost in a Patriot League Tournament semifinal to Bucknell last weekend;
The Knights are led by Rob McCallion (14g, 18a), Justin Bokmeyer (22g, 9a) and Jason Peyer (19g, 6a); Brooks Korvin has 19 goals. at the other end, goalkeeper Adam Fullerton boasts a .632 save percentage and a 6.86 goals-against average.
Looking at the rest of the Ivy League schedule Saturday, Brown (4-1) and Princeton (4-1) meet in Providence Saturday at 1 p.m. to determine who will share the Ivy title with Cornell (5-1); Dartmouth (2-3) and Harvard (1-4) close out the Ivy season in Cambridge; and Yale travels to Maryland to finish the season with the Terps. On Friday night, Cornell will close out the regular season at regional rival Hobart.