April 19, 2011

Patriot League Men's Weekly Release

from press release

CENTER VALLEY, Pa.
— With just one regular-season weekend remaining before the Patriot League Tournament, there's one very significant facet that will be determined Saturday when No. 16/16 Colgate hosts 12th-ranked Bucknell in Hamilton, N.Y.

The two teams, both 5-0 against League competition this season, sit tied atop the standings, and the winner will emerge with an unblemished record in the League along with the coveted No. 1 seed and hosting responsibilities for the Patriot League Tournament, which kicks off with the semifinals April 29. The Colgate-Bucknell showdown will play out in front of a national television audience on CBS Sports Network.

A lot had to happen in order to reach where we currently stand heading into Saturday's final weekend. With only two of the four berths for the League Tournament having been sewn up, Friday's Bucknell-Lehigh tilt would set the tone for Saturday. A keen interest in that game was taken in both West Point and Annapolis, which were both preoccupied with their own head-to-head battle to come Saturday, but Friday's outcome would add to an already tense stage for the weekend.

Lehigh led Bucknell 7-1 in the second quarter and held an 11-9 advantage with 5:25 to go. Bison junior Billy Eisenreich, who'd already tallied five points in the game, scored three straight unassisted goals, including the game-winner with 1:40 left, to lead Bucknell's surge in its 12-11 come-from-behind victory over the Mountain Hawks. That meant Navy needed to beat Army Saturday by at least four goals to outright clinch a tournament bid, or win by three or less and hope Lehigh lost next week to Lafayette.

Navy jumped ahead early and was up 7-4 at halftime before Army scored 10 of the game's final 12 goals to take a 14-9 win in Annapolis. The Black Knights secured the No. 3 seed in the tournament, and Navy's loss coupled with Lafayette's defeat to Colgate put Lehigh into the tournament for the first time since 2006.

OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK

BILLY EISENREICH, BUCKNELL Jr., M, Chatham, N.J.
What a way to come back from injury. After having missed several games, the junior middie returned to the Bison lineup and posted a career-high eight points on four goals and four assists to lead Bucknell to a thrilling 12-11 victory at Lehigh Friday night. Bucknell fell behind 7-1 in the first half but chipped away to make it an 11-9 game with 5:25 remaining in the contest. Eisenreich scored three straight unassisted goals, including the game-winner on a tremendous individual effort with 1:40 left, to lift his team to the come-from-behind victory. The win moved Bucknell to 11-2 overall and 5-0 in the Patriot League, and kept it in a first-place tie with Colgate. The Bison visit the Raiders Saturday at 7 p.m. on CBS Sports Network, with the winner earning the No. 1 seed and hosting responsibilities for the Patriot League Tournament.

DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK

TIM HENDERSON, ARMY Jr., DM, Tully, N.Y.
While teammates Garrett Thul and Jeremy Boltus bore the bulk of the offensive responsibilities, Henderson was arguably the best player on the field for the Black Knights, especially in the second half as they erased a 7-4 halftime deficit and rallied for a 14-9 victory over rival Navy in Annapolis to clinch the No. 3 seed in the Patriot League Tournament. Henderson was charged with marking Navy's Andy Warner, and held him to no goals and two assists in the game. He also contributed offensively as well, posting a goal and an assist along with four ground balls and a caused turnover. Henderson's tally came during Army's four-goal outburst in the third, as his strike from 16 yards out tied the game at 7-7 at the 11:30 mark.

GOALKEEPER OF THE WEEK

TOM PALESKY, ARMY Sr., GK, Plano, Texas
Palesky recorded his fourth game with double-digit saves on Saturday as Army clinched a spot in the Patriot League Tournament with its 14-9 win at Navy. The senior from Plano, Texas faced 40 shots from the Mids and finished the game with 11 saves. Nine of his stops came in the second half, including six during the third quarter in which the Black Knights outscored Navy 6-1. After a tough first half in which he allowed seven goals and made only two saves, he yielded just a pair of Midshipmen tallies in the game's final 30 minutes. Palesky also collected a team-high four ground balls in the win.

ROOKIE OF THE WEEK

MATT SMITH, HOLY CROSS Fr., M, North Bethesda, Md.
Smith scored a goal in the Crusaders' 14-5 victory over Mercer Saturday in Worcester and collected a career-best three ground balls. His marker came at the 1:22 mark of the first quarter, giving Holy Cross a 2-0 lead. He recorded four shots in the contest.

HONORABLE MENTIONS

JEREMY BOLTUS, ARMY Sr., A, Baldwinsville, N.Y.
Boltus tied his season best with seven points on four goals and three assists to lead the Black Knights' second-half offensive explosion in Saturday's 14-9 win over Navy. With 114 career assists, Boltus is tied for second all-time at Army and fifth in League history with Jeff Bryan, who played from 2001-04.

ANDREW MOULD, COLGATE Sr., A, Wyomissing, Pa.
Mould scored four goals, including the game-winner with 3:47 left in the fourth quarter, to lift Colgate to an 11-10 win at Lafayette at a soggy Fisher Stadium in Easton.

JAKE CLARKE, BUCKNELL Sr., DM, Cos Cob, Conn.
Clarke scooped up nine ground balls and recorded a pair of caused turnovers to steady Bucknell's defense to aid in his team's 12-11 come-from-behind win at Lehigh Friday night. He won 14 of 25 faceoffs for the game, including four critical wins late that helped the Bison collect possession to set up their scores.

DOUGLAS BROUSSARD, HOLY CROSS Sr., D, Floral Park, N.Y.
Broussard averaged 7.0 ground balls and 2.5 caused turnovers per game last week for the Crusaders, who lost 13-8 to Bryant and rebounded with a 14-5 win Saturday over Mercer.

TOM PERINI, LAFAYETTE Sr., A, Huntington, N.Y.
Perini scored three goals for the Leopards Saturday against Colgate, setting the all-time career mark at Lafayette with 124. That places him sixth all-time in Patriot League history.

Patriot League Notebook

DOWN TO THE WIRE
This is the way it should be. When No. 16/16 Colgate hosts 12th-ranked Bucknell Saturday night at 7 p.m. at Andy Kerr Stadium in Hamilton, N.Y., the Patriot League Tournament's top seed and hosting responsibilities will be on the line. There's a lot of personal pride on the line as well, with the Raiders and Bison having developed a rivalry of sorts the last several years. Bucknell captured an 8-7 overtime victory in Lewisburg last year, its second straight win over the Raiders. Colgate won four in a row in the series from 2005-08. Bucknell holds an 18-10 all-time edge over Colgate in a series that started back in 1979. In Hamilton, the Bison are 6-5 against Colgate, including 5-4 since the Patriot League began play 20 years ago.

FIELD SET, SEEDS ALMOST THERE
Heading into last weekend, there were a plethora of postseason scenarios. The only things known for sure were that Bucknell and Colgate were in, and one of them would host the Patriot League Tournament. Beyond that was a giant question mark. The dominoes began to fall Friday night. In the early going it looked great for Lehigh, which held a 7-1 lead in the second quarter of its contest against No. 12/12 Bucknell. A Lehigh win would've clinched it a spot in the League Tournament and opened the door for Navy to do the same with a win over Army Saturday. The entire mood of the weekend changed when Bucknell completed its comeback at Lehigh, which muddied Navy's road to the League bracket while also keeping the door open for Lafayette. After Army mounted its second-half comeback to defeat the rival Mids, the Black Knights clinched the No. 3 seed in the tournament and ensured itself a chance to defend last year's title. With Colgate's win over Lafayette Saturday night, the Leopards were eliminated from the League Tournament and Lehigh clinched the No. 4 seed, regardless of whatever happens in the upcoming weekend. The last piece of business to square away is hosting responsibilities for the tournament, which comes down to Bucknell-Colgate in Hamilton, N.Y., Saturday at 7 p.m. on CBS Sports Network.

LAFAYETTE-LEHIGH MEET FOR 83RD TIME
Army-Navy is obviously a huge rivalry, but there is another that is contested within the framework of the Patriot League. Lafayette and Lehigh will meet for the 83rd time Saturday when the Mountain Hawks host the Leopards at 7 p.m. at the Ulrich Sports Complex in Bethlehem. Lehigh owns a 60-21-1 all-time edge in the series, and has won nine of the last 11 meetings, including last year's 10-9 overtime decision in Easton, Pa. In each of the last two seasons, the annual Lehigh-Lafayette tilt has been decided by a single goal, with Lafayette winning 9-8 in 2009, while Lehigh won by two (9-7) the year before that. Other close games in recent years include 2005 (9-7 Lehigh) and 2004 (7-6 Lehigh).

BOLTUS, THUL, BAUM MAKE TEWAARATON CUT
Army's Jeremy Boltus and Garrett Thul, and Colgate's Peter Baum were officially named candidates for the 2011 Tewaaraton Trophy, it was announced Monday. Boltus and Baum were part of the initial crew of seven players from the Patriot League to make the Tewaaraton Watch List in early March, while Boltus and Army goalkeeper Tom Palesky were added when the list expanded several weeks ago. The award is presented annually by the Greater Washington Sports Alliance to the top men's and women's college lacrosse players across all divisions. The list will be further narrowed down during the regular season until the 10 finalists are announced in May. The winner will be announced June 2 at the Warner Theater in Washington, D.C.

MORE NATIONAL TELEVISION EXPOSURE
After two games involving Patriot League men's lacrosse teams were aired on national television last week, two more will hit the airwaves this weekend, both on Saturday night. Bucknell and Colgate will face off at 7 p.m. at Andy Kerr Stadium in Hamilton, N.Y. on CBS Sports Network with Dave Ryan on play-by-play and Steve Panarelli on color. An hour later, Navy will play its season finale at perennial rival No. 2/2 Johns Hopkins on ESPNU starting at 8 p.m.

LEHIGH'S SNYDER BREAKS GROUND BALL RECORD
Ryan Snyder has been one of the nation's best at the face-off X, and his ground ball numbers prove it. He took another step over the weekend, as he etched his name in the Patriot League's record book. With six ground balls Friday against Bucknell and another two Sunday versus North Carolina, Snyder has 104 for the season, breaking the League's single-season mark of 102 held by Colgate's Alex McFerran and set in 1996. Snyder has at least two games remaining this season to add to his record starting Saturday when the Mountain Hawks host Lafayette at 7 p.m.

MID-SEASON ACCOLADES FOR BOLTUS, BAUM
Two of the Patriot League's top offensive players earned mid-season All-America honors from Inside Lacrosse magazine several weeks ago. Army senior attackman Jeremy Boltus earned first-team honors from the publication, while Colgate sophomore middie Peter Baum was placed on the second team. Boltus leads the country with 2.92 assists per game and is second nationally with 4.83 points per contest, while Baum is fifth in the country averaging 2.58 goals and 13th with 3.42 points per game. Baum has a career-best 31 goals this season, while Boltus has climbed into sole possession of fifth place on the Patriot League's all-time points list with 203.

PERINI SETS LAFAYETTE MARK, EYES LEAGUE TOP FIVE
Lafayette senior Tom Perini's remarkable career will come to a close Saturday when the Leopards visit Lehigh. One of the Patriot League's best goal scorers the last four years, Perini put his stamp on the Lafayette record book Saturday when he scored three times to break the school's mark for career goals. He stands at 124, one ahead of Evan Deoul, who scored 123 during his four-year career from 1981-84. Perini sits sixth all-time in League history, one shy of Army's John Walker, who scored 125 times from 2003-06. If Perini nets one against the Mountain Hawks Saturday, he will become the second student-athlete in the last three years to enter the League's top-five in career goals. Colgate's Brandon Corp scored 127 during his career that finished up in 2009. He sits fourth all-time.

THE FIRST FOR MORRISSEY
Jim Morrissey was named the interim head coach at Holy Cross several weeks ago after serving as an assistant for the first seven games of the season, and on Saturday he garnered the first victory of his young career in the Crusaders' 9-6 win at Lafayette. He added his second last weekend when the Crusaders handled Mercer, 14-5. Morrissey joined the staff in the fall of 2010. A Syracuse graduate, he played on two national championship teams for the Orange and was a two-time All-America selection. Morrissey brought a wealth of coaching experience with him when he joined the Crusader staff last fall, as he'd served in an assistant's capacity at Cornell, Syracuse and Hobart.

ARMY VOTED PRESEASON FAVORITE
Fresh off an 11-6 campaign, a perfect 6-0 Patriot League record and an appearance in the second round of the NCAA Tournament, Army was voted the 2011 preseason favorite by head coaches and sports information directors around the League who could not vote for their own teams. The Black Knights secured the maximum 78 points and 12 first-place votes, ahead of 2010 runner-up Navy, which garnered 58 points and one first-place vote. Bucknell took third with 51 points and the lone remaining first-place vote, while Colgate secured fourth with 39 points. Lehigh (31 points), Lafayette (30) and Holy Cross (13) rounded out the poll.

PATRIOT LEAGUE HITS NATIONAL TELEVISION IN 2011
A total of eight Patriot League men's lacrosse games will be nationally televised on CBS Sports Network in 2011, including all three games of the League Tournament on April 29 and May 1. The Patriot League Tournament is the only conference tournament in the country that is nationally televised in its entirety. Navy's game hosting Maryland Friday, April 8 was the first involving a Patriot League team to hit the national television airwaves, as the teams battled at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, Md. Eight days later, CBS Sports Network returned to Annapolis to televise the annual Army-Navy matchup, won 14-9 by the Black Knights. The regular-season finale between Colgate and Bucknell at Andy Kerr Stadium in Hamilton, N.Y., will be televised nationally on CBS Sports Network, with the top seed of the Patriot League Tournament on the line. In addition to the eight games on CBSN this season, the Navy-Johns Hopkins matchup in Baltimore, Md. April 23 will be televised on ESPNU beginning at 8 p.m.

ALL ROADS LEAD TO LATE APRIL
The 2011 Patriot League Tournament is scheduled for Friday, April 29 and Sunday, May 1, at the site of the regular-season champion and highest seed. All three games will be televised nationally by CBS Sports Network, with the semifinals taking place Friday at 5 p.m. and 7:45 p.m. The championship contest is slated for Sunday at 3 p.m. The Patriot League Tournament is the only conference tournament that is scheduled to be nationally televised in its entirety. Last season, Army posted a perfect 6-0 record to earn the regular-season title and hosting responsibilities.

Team Notebooks

ARMY Jeremy Boltus led all players with seven points (4g, 3a) and Garrett Thul scored five times as Army rallied for a 14-9 win at Navy Saturday afternoon on CBS Sports Network ... After Thul's second of the day tied the game at 3-3, Navy scored four straight to take a 7-3 lead in the second quarter ... Devin Lynch's unassisted tally with :12 left in the first half sent Army to the locker room down 7-4 ... Lynch's goal started a stretch of five straight for the Black Knights, who took an 8-7 lead on Thul's third of the game at the 9:03 mark of the third ... Boltus scored three straight goals to break an 8-8 tie, including the eventual game-winner ... Army was outshot 40-21, but Tom Palesky made 11 saves, including nine in the second half, as the Black Knights rallied after the intermission ... Boltus and Thul were one of three Patriot Leaguers to be officially named Tewaaraton Award candidates on Monday ... With the win over Navy, the Black Knights secured the No. 3 seed in the Patriot League Tournament, while at the same time eliminating their rival from competing in the postseason ... Army has beaten Navy three straight years in the regular season for the first time since 1950-52 ... Army wraps up its League slate Saturday with a noon start at Holy Cross ... Army still has one regular-season contest scheduled after the League Tournament against No. 2/2 Johns Hopkins at Michie Stadium.

BUCKNELL Junior middie Billy Eisenreich proved just how valuable he is to the Bison, tallying a career-high eight points in Friday's come-from-behind 12-11 thriller at Lehigh ... He scored the game's final three goals, all unassisted, with the game-winner coming after an amazing individual effort with 1:40 to go ... Bucknell trailed 7-1 in the second quarter and was behind 11-9 with 5:25 to go ... Charlie Streep pitched in four goals, while Ryan Klipstein scored three times and added an assist ... Jake Clarke went 14-for-25 at the X with nine ground balls and two caused turnovers ... He secured four critical face-off wins during the Bison's fourth-quarter run ... Kyle Feeney made eight saves in the win in 49:42 of action ... The Bison, which stood pat at No. 12 in both major national polls Monday, visit Colgate Saturday at 7 p.m. on CBS Sports Network with the regular-season title and the Patriot League Tournament's No. 1 seed on the line ... The Bison are looking for their fourth-ever undefeated regular-season League record and second in the last three seasons.

COLGATE Andrew Mould scored four times and Peter Baum added a pair of goals with an assist as Colgate outlasted Lafayette 11-10 in Easton, Pa., during a soggy Saturday night contest at Fisher Stadium ... Jim Carroll won 14 of 22 face-offs for the Raiders, who held a 26-23 edge in ground balls ... Ben McCabe added a goal and an assist, while Jeff Ledwick scored twice ... Mould's first of the game put Colgate up 3-1, and that was the score at the end of the first ... Lafayette rallied back to lead 5-4 at halftime ... McCabe scored at the 10:21 of the third quarter to start a three-goal spurt for the Raiders as they retook the lead, 7-6 ... After Colin Serling gave Lafayette a 9-8 lead at the 11:37 mark of the fourth, Carroll scored five seconds later on an individual effort to tie the game ... Baum and Tom Perini traded markers, and Mould's fourth of the game at 3:47 of the fourth stood as the game-winner ... Lafayette's shot on its last possession eluded keeper Jared Madison but ricocheted off the pipe ... The 16th-ranked Raiders host Bucknell Saturday at 7 p.m. on CBS Sports Network ... Colgate will be looking for its first unblemished regular-season record against League opponents ... The Raiders only other regular-season crown was shared in 2006 with Navy.

HOLY CROSS The Crusaders went 1-1 last week, losing 13-8 to Bryant but picking up a 14-5 win over Mercer Saturday in Worcester ... Colin McGeehin scored five times, while James Kennedy and Andrew Morici tallied a pair apiece ... Brandon DeLisio stopped five shots to record the victory ... Freshman Matt Smith scored a goal on four shots with three ground balls and was named Patriot League Rookie of the Week ... The Crusaders out shot Mercer 47-17 and held an incredible 50-26 advantage in ground balls ... Holy Cross won 19-of-23 faceoffs, with A.J. Guarente going 10-of-13 and Tim Pond 8-of-9 ... The Crusaders welcome No. 18/17 Army to Worcester Saturday at noon.

LAFAYETTE With three goals Saturday night, senior Tom Perini now has a Lafayette-record 124 for his career, which places him sixth in Patriot League history ... He and three teammates logged three points apiece in Saturday's loss against No. 16/16 Colgate ... After Andrew Mould's fourth goal of the game gave Colgate an 11-10 lead with less than four minutes to go, Lafayette's setup on its last possession led to a Perini shot from the left alley that beat Raider goaltender Jared Madison, but it caught the right post and deflected away ... Colin Serling, Stefan Bauer, and Cesar Munoz tallied three points in addition to Perini's hat trick ... Andrijko Andrusko made 10 saves in 54:10 worth of work ... The Leopards finish out their season Saturday night at 7 p.m. at rival Lehigh.

LEHIGH The Mountain Hawks suffered a pair of losses over the weekend, losing 12-11 to No. 12 Bucknell Friday night at Ulrich Sports Complex and 15-8 Sunday to No. 10/9 North Carolina at Goodman Stadium ... Despite the loss to the Bison Friday, the Mountain Hawks clinched their first Patriot League Tournament berth since 2006 thanks to Colgate's win over Lafayette Saturday night ... It was all Lehigh early in Friday's game, as Cameron Lao-Gosney's 20th of the season put the Mountain Hawks in front 7-1 with 10:18 until halftime ... Bucknell scored five out of the next six to cut it to an 8-6 Lehigh lead in the third quarter ... Lehigh was up 11-7 in the fourth quarter before the Bison finished the game with five straight tallies, including three from Billy Eisenreich ... Lehigh tried to bounce back Sunday against UNC, but fell behind 7-0 in the second quarter ... The Tar Heels' lead increased to 12-2 in the third ... The Mountain Hawks scored six of the game's last nine goals ... Sophomore Griffin Farha made the first two starts of his career in net against Bucknell and North Carolina ... Lehigh hosts Lafayette Saturday night at 7 p.m. in the regular-season finale.

NAVY The Mids scored four straight goals to take a 7-3 lead in the second quarter against Army Saturday afternoon in Annapolis ... Tucker Hull scored three times and added an assist, while Jay Mann and Kevin Doyle scored a pair each ... Andy Warner contributed two assists (including his 100th career point) while being marked by Army's Tim Henderson ... Mann's second of the game tied the game at 8-8 and snapped a stretch of five straight Army tallies ... Hull's third of the game came during a two-minute unreleaseable extra-man opportunity to make it a 12-9 deficit, but Navy would get no closer ... The Mids' streak of seven straight Patriot League Tournament appearances comes to an end ... Navy will visit No. 2/2 Johns Hopkins Saturday at 8 p.m. on ESPNU in its season finale.


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