Men's Lacrosse Opens Ivy Play at Princeton

PHILADELPHIA - Having completed a brutal non-conference stretch of seven games in 17 days, the Penn men's lacrosse team's schedule slowed down significantly following Monday's game at Maryland. That said, the 2010 slate also reached its most important element -- Ivy League play.

The Quakers will face conference opponents each of the next six Saturdays, starting this weekend when they travel to Princeton to face the fifth-ranked Tigers at 1 p.m. on Class of 1952 Stadium. (Please note the new start time; the original time was 3 p.m.)

This marks the second straight Top 5 team Penn will face; the Quakers lost to No. 4 Maryland, 10-7, Monday in College Park.

The Series
The Tigers have dominated this series for two decades now, winning 20 straight over the Quakers. However, Penn gave Princeton a real scare last year, falling 10-9 in overtime at Franklin Field. The Tigers were ranked second nationally at the time, and actually climbed to No. 1 the following week. The last time these teams met in Princeton, in 2008, the Tigers gained a 14-5 decision. Overall, Princeton leads the series, 61-16; this will be the 64th consecutive year the teams have met in men's lacrosse.

About Princeton
The Tigers (4-1) are ranked fifth in this week's USILA national coaches' poll, but saw their unbeaten streak doused by No. 3 North Carolina Tuesday night, 12-11. Rob Engelke -- the older brother of Penn freshman goalkeeper Brendan Engelke -- leads Princeton in scoring with six goals and 10 assists for 16 points. Mike Chanenchuk and noted Quaker-killer Jack McBride have 14 points apiece, while Chris McBridge has 13. In goal, Tyler Fiorito has started all five games and boasts a 9.31 goals-against average with a .483 save percentage.

Penn Notes
*IN THE NATIONAL STATS: Justin Lynch entered the week sixth in ground balls per game; Corey Winkoff was 11th in assists per game; Lynch was 19th in face-off win percentage.

*Penn lost at No. 4 Maryland earlier this week, 10-7. The Quakers were within a goal with 10 minutes to play, but the Terps scored two goals in a 13-second span to pull out the win.

*Penn's four-game win streak before that loss was its longest since the 2006 team opened the season with six wins en route to an NCAA Championship bid.

*Penn had six different goalscorers in Monday's loss; in fact, the Quakers have had at least six difference goalscorers in six of their seven games so far this season.

*Senior Rob McMullen, the reigning Ivy League Player of the Week, had two more goals against Maryland to give him a team-high 14 for the season.

*McMullen, who entered this season with nine collegiate goals, has scored at least two goals in six of Penn's seven games. He had a career-high four last weekend vs. Villanova.

*Winkoff has a 15-game point-scoring streak dating back to last season; he is the only player on the roster to record a point in every game this season (two 2-point games, three 3-point games, two 4-point games).

*The leading assist man for Penn since he arrived on campus, Winkoff has 57 dishes for his career; he needs four to crack the program's all-time Top 10.

*Sophomore John Conneely, who had a goal and two assists at Maryland, is second on the team in assists (9) and points (18). He has recorded at least two points in six of Penn's seven games.

*Junior Al Kohart is second on the team in goals (12) and third in points (17); 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.

*Savage has 12 points (6g, 6a), while classmate Will Amling has scored six goals.

*Freshman Rob Fitzpatrick has six goals and an assist over the last three games.

*Senior tri-captain Joe Kelly is second on the team with 24 ground balls.

*Senior Chris Casey has started all seven games in goal, compiling an 11.48 goals-against average and a .500 save percentage; in four of the last five games, he has split halves in the cage with sophomore Joe Hegener (6.59 GAA, .541 save percentage).

Quoting Coach Murphy
"Our approach for Saturday will essentially be the same as it was for the first seven games. We'll give our guys a written and video scouting report, followed by a game plan."

"With the extra time between games, we will have more or less the same preparation -- however, it will be a little easier on the coaching staff because we have six days to do it instead of jamming a ton of work into two or three days. We might provide our players with a little greater detail in the scouting, but it's essentially the same process."

"Our games against Duke and Maryland were valuable for two primary reasons. First, they got us to play at a certain level of intensity and execution. Second, they exposed our weaknesses so we can improve those areas."