posted 03.26.2012 at 1.15 p.m. by Matt Forman

Men's Tewaaraton Tracker: Fifteen to Follow

Before we get to the names in the hunt, it's worth noting that last week three additions were made to the original men's Watch List.

Here's how we break it down after the weekend...

LEADER IN THE CLUBHOUSE

Steele Stanwick, Virginia
Until someone unseats Stanwick, he's still the favorite. In an eight-minute span of the fourth quarter Saturday, Stanwick assisted back-to-back goals and then scored one of his own. He has an uncanny ability to make clutch plays in close games. As colleague Corey McLaughlin wrote in today's installment of "Working Off The Weekend" ... "I just can't get away from this: The more I watch Steele Stanwick the more it is reinforced that he's one of the best attackmen to ever play the game. I don't think we can say this enough. His passes have such pinpoint accuracy and his field sense is second-to-none."

WITHIN STRIKING DISTANCE

Will Manny, Massachusetts
The Minutemen were off this weekend, so Manny didn't have a chance to stuff the stat sheet like he has all year: 21 goals (on 36 shots!) and 12 assists in seven games. UMass looks primed for a deep playoff run, and Manny has been leading the charge all year.

Mike Sawyer, Loyola
Loyola is off to its first 8-0 start since 1999 thanks to Sawyer and lefty running mate Eric Lusby. Sawyer scored four straight goals as part of a 10-1 run by the Greyhounds in Saturday's 13-5 win over cross-town rival UMBC. Sawyer has buried 29 goals and dished out seven assists already.

Tucker Durkin, Johns Hopkins
Durkin has drawn opponents' top playmaker each week and largely held each one in check — Syracuse's Tim Desko scored one goal on four shots, Princeton's Tom Schreiber scored one goal on five shots and Stanwick scored a pair on nine shots. Granted, Hopkins has played very sound team defense, but Durkin is a big reason why. He studies film to understand tendencies as well as any player in the country.

Mark Matthews, Denver
Matthews didn't have a particularly loud day — one goal, one assist — in Denver's 11-8 defeat of Air Force on Saturday, but he leads one of the nation's most efficient and prolific offenses, having scored 21 goals and 11 assists. Plus, the name recognition and ridiculous goals help.

ALSO IN THE HUNT

Peter Baum, Colgate
The nation's leading scorer tallied three goals in Colgate's 12-11 loss to Navy on Saturday. Baum has recorded an incredulous 49 points (36 goals, 13 assists) through nine games, and he has the Raiders in the race for an NCAA tournament berth.

John Kemp, Notre Dame
The brick wall at the heart of Notre Dame's dominant defense, Kemp is allowing just 5.8 goals per game with a .656 save percentage. He stopped 17 shots in the Fighting Irish's 8-7 defeat of Ohio State, then made seven stops in the Big East opener against Rutgers.

Niko Amato, Maryland
The Terrapins don't have one go-to, feature offensive playmaker, and they instead rely on a host of versatile weapons. Amato might be Maryland's flashiest player, routinely making big saves in big situations. He made 10 saves in the Terps' 11-10 loss to North Carolina on Saturday. The Terps will go as deep as Amato takes them.

Zach Palmer, Johns Hopkins
Palmer went for 1 and 1 against Virginia on Saturday, and he leads the Blue Jays with 28 points on the season. The Hopkins offense was forced to adjust without Boland. Palmer has been the glue.

Colin Briggs, Virginia
Briggs' stats — 13 goals, 11 assists — don't scream "Player of the Year," but his impact isn't understood in the box score. He does a little bit of everything for the Cavaliers, including scoring the game-winner against Cornell in the Face-Off Classic.

DARKHORSE CONTENDERS

David DiMaria, Lehigh
Steve Mock, Cornell
Jordan Wolf, Duke
Marcus Holman, North Carolina
Tom Schreiber, Princeton

***

Let us know: Who are your Tewaaraton favorites? Who should be receiving more attention?

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