#16 UMass Vs. #10 Georgetown In ESPNU Warrior Classic
#16 UMASS (7-4) vs. #10 GEORGETOWN (7-4)
Among The National Leaders
Offensive Explosion Early On
Georgetown is 12th in the NCAA with 11.4 goals per game led by Travis Comeau, who has 20 goals.
UMass had at least 10 goals in its first nine game this season with a season-high of 20 against Hartford (2/20). The last time UMass began the season with double-figures in its first nine games was in 2003. That year UMass had at least 10 goals in its first 13 games.
Perhaps the most notable stat on UMass' offense is that 65.2 percent of UMass' goals have been assisted this season (88 of 135). Only two teams: Bellarmine (67.2) and Jacksonville (65.7) and have better ratios of goals assisted. The game at Penn State (4/3) demonstrated the top-notch passing as all 10 goals were assisted. UMass is fifth in the NCAA in assists per game with 8.0. Robert Morris lead with 9.33 per game.
UMass is also shooting 32.0 percent on its shots, 12th in the NCAA. That includes a mark of 38 percent in the fourth quarter.
Part of UMass' success has been the man-up offense. The Minutemen are scoring on 45.9 percent of its EMOs to rank eighth in the NCAA. UMass has 17 man-up goals on 37 chances.
UMass has a well-rounded offense with six players tallying more than 10 goals. Eight different players have at least 10 points, including three with more than 30.
Kell had at least two points in every game he has played and at least two goals in seven of eight games. He was named the UMass Athlete of the Week on March 29 after his nine-point week (5g, 4 a) including both game-winning goals to beat #15 Brown and #6 Hofstra.
Freshman attacker Will Manny has taken over the lead statistical leadership from Kell. He tops the team in scoring as he has 36 points on team-highs of 22 goals and 14 assists. Manny has at least two points in every game this season. He netted hat tricks vs. Harvard (3/13), at Penn State (4/3) and at Delaware (4/17). The one vs. the Blue Hens was a natual hat trick with three consecutive goals in 3:08. Manny was named Inside Lacrosse's No. 3 Freshman of the Year at the Midseason on April 5.
Senior captain midfielder Bobby Hayes is fourth on the team in points with 28 and stands fourth in goals with 17. Hayes has points in all 11 games this season and has points in 13 games in a row dating to last season. Hayes is second on the team lead in man-up goals with four, behind Kyle Smith.
Midfielders Anthony Biscardi (18 goals, 12 assists for 30 points) and Ryan Hantverk (14 goals, 11 assists for 25 points) and have been very consistent along side of Hayes. Biscardi has at least three points in nine of 11 games this season and has points in 10 of 11 games. Hantverk has points in nine of 11 games with multiple points in eight of those games. UMass' first midfield has a combined 49 goals and 34 assists for 83 points. That's a rate of 7.5 points per game.
UMass has been well-rounded on offense with 15 different players scoring and 11 with at least three goals. Six different players have 10 or more goals and 10 players have at least five goals.
Sophomore Steve D'Amario has emerged recently and has six goals and 10 points on the season with his first-career mutli-goal game at Brown (3/23). Freshman man-up specialist Kyle Smith has five goals and four assists with eight points coming in EMO situations. He leads UMass with five man-up goals, second in the CAA.
The Series With Georgetown
UMass and Georgetown won or had a share of the ECAC title for nine of the 10 years they were in the league since it was formed in 2000. Last season UMass won its fourth ECAC title, in its final season in the league. Loyola won the only crown by it self in 2008, the first time neither Georgetown or UMass did not take the crown. The Minutemen claimed the crown in 2001, 2002, 2005 and 2009. Georgetown won the league in 2000, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2006 and 2007.
The winner of the UMass-Georgetown game has won or shared the ECAC league title in seven of the 10 years the league existed including four of the last six years. Georgetown holds a 7-3 lead in the all-time series with UMass winning in 2002 (16-13), 2003 (11-8) and 2005 (13-12). The Hoyas captured the games in 2000 (19-18), 2001 (13-12), 2004 (12-10), 2006 (8-6), 2007 (8-7) and 2009 (10-7). Only in 2003 and 2009, did the winner not win the ECAC title.
The 10 games have been decided by a total of 21 goals, 2.1 per game. That includes four one-goal affairs.
The series has been close, as three of the last five games were decided by one or two goals, including one-goal affairs in 2005 and 2007. The last four games have been decided by three goals or less and a total of seven goals.
In the 10 all-time meetings, no team has won by more than four goals.
Recent Games With Georgetown
Two years ago in 2008, UMass goalie Doc Schneider made a then-career high 20 saves to keep the undermanned Minutemen in the game in a 12-8 loss in Washington, D.C. No. 5 Georgetown shot early and often as the Hoyas mounted a 61-28 shots advantage. The Minutemen saw their three-game winning streak come to an end. UMass freshman Zach Rodgers had two goals and two assists and junior Tim Balise had two goals. The Minutemen's other goals came from Ryan Bagnasco, Fred Federico, Christian Hain and Paul Manesis. Georgetown was led by All-American Brendan Cannon, who had four goals and Andrew Baird, who tallied three goals.
In 2007, UMass rallied from a four-goal deficit in the third quarter to tie the game at 6-6, but were done in by a pair of Craig Dowd extra-man goals late, in an 8-7 loss to No. 6 Georgetown. With the win, the Hoyas clinched at least a share of the ECAC title. After Georgetown had built a 6-2 lead just 44 seconds into the second half, UMass went on a tear to tie the game and excite the Garber Field faithful. Brett Garber tallied twice in the run including the goal to make it 6-6 with 7:33 left in regulation. He fired home a feed from fellow Brian Jacovina, who set up the final three goals in the run. Jacovina previously connected with Andrew Recchione to make it 6-5 with 12:43 left regulation. Prior to that Garber scored his first of the game with 12:12 left in the third as the Hoyas still led 6-4. Evan Blum started the run with a goal 1:58 into the second half.
Sophomore defenseman Tom Celentani is off to a sensational starting in his first season as a starter on close defense. He leads the team in caused turnovers with 21, which ranks 11th in the NCAA (1.91 per game). He also has 26 groundballs, fourth on the team.
Junior Casey Rahn is second on the team with 31 groundballs (2.8 per game), as the team's top long-pole on defense and the face-off wing. He had a huge game with five groundballs and two caused turnovers in the win over #6 Hofstra (3/27).
Short-stick middie Stephen Zorkers is third on the team in groundballs with 28 (2.6 per game) and has guarded some of the top offensive players in the country. He raked up a career-best six groundballs at #15 Brown (3/23).
Fifteen Minutemen have double-figure groundballs led by face-off man Greg Rushing (52), who is 20th in the NCAA in groundballs per game (4.73).
McCormack Continues to Improve Play In Goal
Against Hofstra (3/27), McCormack made 12 saves including six in the fourth quarter -- two in the final minute as UMass topped the Pride, 11-9.
McCormack notched a career-high 18 saves against Towson (4/10).
Over his last five games, McCormack has a 59.3 save percentage (67 saves on 113 shots on goal).
In his first season replacing Doc Schneider in goal, McCormack has a 7-4 record, starting 11 games with a 9.46 GAA and 53.7 save percentage.
Fantastic Face-Off Men
At Brown, Rushing was strong winning 11-of-16 for the game as UMass started off winning 15 of the first 17 in the contest.
Fellow sophomore Anthony Toresco has shown potent at the "X" as well. He won 7-of-11 vs. Providence and 5-of-8 at Brown. He has 19 groundballs on the year.
Highest Rankings Since 2006
With a No. 9 ranking the week of March 29, UMass is in the Top 10 for consecutive weeks for the first time since that 2006 season. UMass started that season in the Top 10 for the first five weeks.
Best Scoring Start Since 2003
The last time UMass had at least 10 in goals in each of the first nine games -- as they did this season -- was in 2003.
In 2010, UMass had its best three-game start in scoring since 1990, with 47 goals this season. In 1990 the Minutemen tallied 70 goals in its first three games. In a trip to Arizona, UMass beat the Wildcats, 27-8 and Whittier College, 28-7 in back-to-back games. That was followed up with a 16-15 loss to Cornell, for a total of 70 goals in the first three games.
Notes On Beating A Top 10 Team
The win over Hofstra was the team's first regular-season over a Top 10 team since beating No. 7 Syracuse on April 30, 2005 and UMass' high against the highest-ranked team in the regular-season since knocking off No. 3 Georgetown, also in 2005, 13-12 on April 23.
20-Goal Outburst Vs. Hartford
The Minutemen jumped out to a 13-7 halftime lead, marking the most goals in a half since that same Rutgers game in 2002. Against the Scarlet Knights, UMass had a 14-goal second half including an 11-goal fourth quarter. Against Hartford, UMass led 8-2 after the first 15 minutes with five goals in the game's first 6:34.
Manny Gains Rookie Honors
Manny was named the CAA Rookie of the Week on Feb. 22 after a seven-point effort in the first two games of the season.
Big Winners Over Last 10 Years
The Minutemen have the ninth-best mark among all teams in the NCAA since 2001 with an 97-50 record for a 66.0 win percentage mark. That includes five seasons with 12 or more wins including a school record 13 wins in 2002, 2003, 2005 and 2006. The Minutemen were second on the list coming into the 2007 season.
Lucky Numbers 10, 11, 13
UMass has now won 69 of its last 70 games when scoring 13 goals, after the 17-3 win over Providence.
The Minutemen had at least 11 goals in the first eight games this season with a 6-2 record and have won 49 of their last 51 games when tallying 11 or more.
Prior to the Yale loss, UMass' last loss when they had more than 11 came in the 2002 NCAA Quarterfinals, a 13-12 loss at Johns Hopkins.
The streak lasted eight years to 2002 -- meaning the last four senior classes had never lost when scoring 11 or more goals.
Last season UMass had four 11-plus efforts in 2009. UMass beat Rutgers 11-10 in overtime in the regular-season finale to go along with 12-6 wins over Fairfield (4/21) and St. John's (4/4) and a 18-6 win over Yale (2/28).
UMass is 39-3 in its last 42 games when scoring double-figures, starting 7-2 this year and a 5-1 mark last year. UMass had won 29 games in a row when scoring 10 or more goals, but that streak was snapped with a 11-10 loss to Hofstra on Feb. 21, 2009. The Minutemen were 29-0 when scoring 10 or more goals from 2004-09. Prior to the loss at Hofstra, the last loss when scoring 10 goals came on May 1, 2004, a 17-10 loss at Syracuse.
Thumbnail Sketch Of The Minutemen
The Minutemen are ranked 16th in this week's USILA Coaches Poll and 16th in the Inside Lacrosse Media Poll. The Minutemen were No. 7 in the April 5 poll, those rankings were the highest since being No. 7 in both polls in the week of March 13 2006.
Last season, the Minutemen finished 9-6 overall and captured the ECAC Championship with a 6-1 league record. UMass fell to Princeton in the NCAA Tournament First Round, 10-7, in New Jersey.
Head coach Greg Cannella is in his 16th season as head coach at his alma mater. Overall, the 1988 UMass grad has a 138-87 career record, winning more than 61.3 percent of the games he has coached. He ranks among the Top 15 among active coaches in the NCAA in career wins and win percentage.
The Minutemen are beginning play in a new league in 2010, the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA). UMass made the move to the league after a national shuffle caused by the formation of the Big East Conference in lacrosse. The Minutemen joined the CAA along with former ECAC member Penn State and will compete in a six-team league along with longtime CAA members Delaware, Drexel, Hofstra and Towson.
Coming into 2010, UMass will have plenty of new faces in key positions. The Minutemen graduated All-Conference players including ECAC Goalie of the Year and Second-Team All-American Doc Schneider (7.43 GAA and 65.3 Save Pct.) along with its two leading scorers in Tim Balise (31 goals, 5 assists for 36 points) and Jim Connolly (39-5=44). Also, graduated were the fourth and fifth leading scorers in Evan Blum (14-8-22) and Rory Pedrick (12-6=18). Overall, UMass returned just 41 goals of its 143 goals from last season, just 28.7 percent. The leading returning scorer is senior captain midfielder Bobby Hayes (12-14=26), who led the team in assists in 2009. Fellow senior captain attackman Ryan Smith is expected to pick up some of the load in his first season as a starter. Sophomore Art Kell was the top rookie scorer a year ago with 11 goals and three assists and will be back to start on attack.
The goalie position will have a new face for the first time in four years as Schneider graduated as one of the all-time greats in UMass history. He finished second in career saves with 753 and is now serving as an assistant coach with the Minutemen. Redshirt sophomore Tim McCormack and freshman Steve Mahle battled for the starting role in preseason camp with McCormack getting the nod to start the year. McCormack redshirted last season to retain three years of eligibility while Mahle was starring at West Genesee High School in upstate New York.
An area with experience heading into 2010 is the close defense, as UMass returns 2009 All-American and 2010 Preseason All-American Diogo Godoi as a senior captain. Godoi will team with returning sophomore Greg Anderson and junior Travis Tripucka. That duo shared starting duties last season along side Godoi and graduated Brennan Mack. Sophomore Tom Celentani has also seen extended playing time on close defense. Junior long-pole Casey Rahn and junior short-stick Stephen Zorkers will also be key to the defense's success.
Godoi Preseason 2nd-Team All-American
UMass Picked Second In CAA; Trio Earn Honors
UMass Wins 2009 ECAC Championship
The Minutemen also captured the league crown in 2001, 2002 and 2005. In 2002 UMass also claimed the league's automatic qualifier. The Minutemen lost the tiebreaker to Georgetown in 2001 and in 2005, the league did not have an AQ.
UMass ended in a tie with Loyola atop the ECAC at 6-1, but claimed the crown by virtue of its 8-6 win at Loyola on March 21.
UMass Claims 2009 ECAC Honors