PHILADELPHIA – The University of Pennsylvania men’s lacrosse team has closed out the Ivy League portion of its season, and knows that it will be a part of the Ivy League Tournament in two weeks. Before that, though, there are two important non-conference games to play as the Quakers make their case for a postseason bid. The first of those games takes place Tuesday night, when Penn travels to Towson to take on the Tigers.
GAME 11 – #10 PENN (7-3) at TOWSON (8-5)
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 * 7 p.m.
Johnny Unitas Stadium (Towson, Md.)
TV:Towson SportsNetwork (there is a fee for this service)
The Penn-Towson Series
Despite their relative proximity and their positions as traditional lacrosse powers, the Quakers and the Tigers have met just twice in men’s lacrosse. Those meetings took place in 2008 (an 18-12 Towson win in Towson) and 2009 (a 10-6 Penn win in Philadelphia).
The Tigers fell to Penn’s neighbor, Drexel, on Saturday to fall to 2-3 in CAA play. In fact, Towson has lost three of its last four games. Thomas DeNapoli leads Towson in assists (16) and points (32), while Joe Seider has 19 goals and Greg Cuccinello has scored 17 times. Justin Mabus has 15 assists and 22 points, while Ryan Drenney has 20 points (10g, 10a). At the other end, Tyler White has started all 13 games in goal for the Tigers; he has a .512 save percentage and a 9.12 goals-against average.
The Ivy League Picture
Penn is done with Ivy League play, and after an 0-2 start in conference play the Quakers finished 4-2 and guaranteed themselves a spot in the four-team Ivy League Tournament along with Cornell, Harvard and Yale. (The Ivy League Tournament will take place May 2 and 4.) Depending on how results go this weekend, the Red and Blue even have a chance to win a share of the Ivy League title. So what are the Ivy matchups in this final weekend? Cornell (4-1) and Princeton (2-3) will play a neutral-site game in Bethpage, N.Y., Harvard (4-1) is at Yale (3-2), and Dartmouth (0-5) is at Brown (1-4).
*Penn entered the week third in Strength of Schedule, or SOS (behind Syracuse and Notre Dame), and third in the NCAA’s Ratings Percentage Index, or RPI (behind Syracuse and Duke).
*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 12 points, 14 players with at least two goals, and five 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.
*After allowing 53 goals in a four-game span from March 1-22 (13.3 gpg), Penn has allowed just 23 goals in its last four games (5.8 gpg).
*Senior goalie Brian Feeney has a .714 save percentage the last two games (25 saves, 10 goals allowed) and a .651 save percentage the last four games (43 saves, 23 goals allowed).
*Senior Zack Losco leads Penn with 24 points and is tied for the team lead with 11 assists; he had four points on Saturday at Dartmouth (2g, 2a), his third-straight game with at least three points.
*Losco is the only Penn player to record a point in every game this season; in fact, he enters the Towson game with at least one point in 19 straight games dating back to last season.
*Sophomore Nick Doktor also has 11 assists, and is second on the team in points (23); after being shut out in Penn’s season opener, he has his 23 points in the last nine games (2.6 ppg) including six multi-point games and five with three or more.
*Junior Isaac Bock leads the Quakers with 14 goals, and has scored at least once in all but two games this season (Cornell, Harvard).
*Freshman Kevin Brown (12 goals) -- who had the overtime game-winner on April 12 against Harvard -- and senior Drew Belinsky (10) are the other players with double-figure goal totals.
*Three other players have double-digit point totals: junior Joe McCallion (13), sophomore Pat Berkery (12), and junior Chris Hupfeldt (12).
*Hupfeldt scored twice at Dartmouth on Saturday, his second multi-goal game this season and third-straight game with two points.
*Junior Andrew Staller scored his first collegiate goal on April 12 against Harvard, then added another score this past Saturday at Dartmouth.
Penn will close out the regular season with St. John’s. That game will take place Friday night, and it will be played at Radnor (Pa.) High School as part of the Katie Samson Lacrosse Festival. The Quakers and Red Storm will face off at 7 p.m.