December 24, 2010

Denver to Face Duke at Bethpage High School

from press release

DENVER – The University of Denver men's lacrosse team will face defending men's lacrosse National Champion Duke on April 9, 2011 at 12 p.m. MT/2 p.m. ET in Bethpage, N.Y., at the brand new Bethpage High School Lacrosse Stadium in Nassau County, Long Island.

"As the University of Denver approaches its 2011 Season, we look forward to trying to solidify a spot among the most respected Division I lacrosse teams in the country," said Denver head coach Bill Tierney. "To do so, we must always look to improve our schedule and play the best available opponents. Beginning the season at Syracuse, having Loyola and Notre Dame back to back in March, hopefully playing in the ECAC tournament, and now adding Duke to our April schedule, will test our skills, depth and character."

The game will be sponsored by the Bethpage Educational Foundation, a non-profit organization whose mission is to support the educational endeavors of the Bethpage Public Schools. The new state-of-the-art athletic complex is one of the finest on Long Island and was built as a partnership between the Bethpage School District and the Town of Oyster Bay.

"This event is a win, win, win situation for Duke Lacrosse," said Duke head coach John Danowski. "We get to play against a Hall of Fame Coach and his NCAA tournament team, play in front of great Long Island lacrosse fans and give back to the community as well."

It seats approximately 2,700. For the event, the Town of Oyster Bay will add an additional 2,500 seats to allow for approximately 6,000 tickets to be for sale to the public.

"Playing the defending NCAA Champions is both a challenge and an honor," Tierney said. "We know that playing such an outstanding team in the middle of our ECAC schedule is a risk, but the opportunity to measure ourselves against the best, is well worth it."

The Pioneers have a 0-3 all-time record against Duke, though the two teams have not met since 2003. Denver will look to notch a crucial neutral-site victory against the defending National Champions in its final non-conference game of the season.

Coach Tierney and coach Danowski both grew up less than 10 miles away from Bethpage High School, making the neutral site a reunion of sorts for two of the most decorated coaches in college lacrosse. Both are long time friends, National Championship lacrosse coaches, National Coaches of the Year, former Long Island high school athletes and coaches, former Nassau County residents and Nassau County public school educators (Tierney-Levittown, Phys. Ed., Danowski-Bellmore-Merrick, Science).

"This game is a culmination of an amazing effort by the members of the Bethpage Educational Foundation and the administrative team," Tierney said. "John Danowski and I are thrilled to be 'coming home' to allow our Long Island friends and lacrosse fans, a chance to see our teams compete at this wonderful venue. To be able to bring outstanding student-athletes to Long Island, from Colorado and North Carolina for a regular season match-up, is exciting for everyone involved. To be doing so, very close to where we both grew up and coached lacrosse, makes it even more special."


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