April 12, 2012
WEST POINT, N.Y. -
Fresh off its biggest win of the season, Army (5-6, 2-2) heads into one of its most critical contests to date as the team welcomes service academy rival Navy to Michie Stadium on Saturday for a noon face-off. A victory for the Black Knights would clinch one of four playoff spots in 2012 Patriot League Tournament.
A Navy (5-5, 3-2) win would do the same for the Mids and would likely leave Army just shy of the field. The Black Knights bring a three-game win streak against Navy into the contest, while also having won four of the last five meetings.
A loss does not completely kill either team's chance to make the field, but both would need help from other teams to make it in.
FANS, CLICK HERE FOR DETAILED INFORMATION ON SPECIAL GAME DAY EVENTS!
HOW TO FOLLOW THE ACTION
Television: Saturday's game will air live on CBS Sports Network. Dave Ryan will handle the play-by-play duties and Evan Washburn will serve as the color analyst.
Radio: Saturday's game can be heard in the Hudson Valley on WBNR - 1340 AM and WLNA - 1390 AM.
Web: ITT Exelis Knight Vision will carry an audio only broadcast of the game. Visit
www.goARMYsports.com to subscribe.
Live Stats: GameTracker will carry live statistics on www.goARMYsports.com. Visit the lacrosse schedule page to access the link.
Twitter: Search @ArmyAthletics for in-game scoring updates.
RIVALRY RETURNS TO MICHIE STADIUM
Saturday's game pits rivals Army and Navy against one another on Blaik Field at Michie Stadium for the first time since the 2010 Patriot League title game. The Black Knights upended the Mids 11-8 on May 2, 2010, to clinch a berth in the NCAA Tournament and win its first crown under current head coach Joe Alberici. Army has not hosted Navy for a regular-season meeting since 2008, which resulted in a 9-6 victory on April 12.
The Black Knights have scored first in eight out of their 11 games.
A win on Saturday would clinch a Patriot League Tournament berth for the Black Knights, who have yet to fall short of making the tournament since it began in 2004.
Army's man-up offense ranks third in the country, converting 51.9 percent of its chances.
Senior Devin Lynch's 2OT game-winning goal in last Saturday's win at Bucknell earned Army Athletic Association Play of the Week honors on Monday. Click here to watch.
Saturday marks the second of three national television appearances for the Black Knights, who played on the network last Saturday at Bucknell and visit No. 3/3 Johns Hopkins on ESPNU May 5.
BLACK KNIGHT REWIND: ARMY 6, #15 BUCKNELL 5 (2OT)
Saturday, April 7, 2012 | Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium
LEWISBURG Pa. - For the second time in his career, senior midfielder Devin Lynch provided a double-overtime game-winning goal. This time around, Lynch's score 30 seconds into a second overtime period put the exclamation point on a 6-5 Army win over No. 15 Bucknell in Patriot League lacrosse action at Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium. The Black Knights' victory ended an eight-game win streak for the Bison, which stood as the fourth-longest win streak in the nation.
The last time Army played a double-overtime game, Lynch came up with the game-winner
at the Carrier Dome as his Black Knights shocked Syracuse in the opening round of the 2010 NCAA Tournament. Lynch's heroics two years later spelled Army's second Patriot League victory and first win over a nationally ranked opponent this season.
Lynch's timely goal marked his only point of the afternoon, while junior attackman Garrett Thul and senior attackman James MacGibbon tallied two goals apiece. Freshman midfielder John Glesener added two points (1G, 1A), while senior attackman Conor Hayes (2A) and junior midfielder Alex Van Krevel (1A) each registered assists.
After entering the locker room tied 2-2, Army withstood deficits of 3-2 and 4-3 before regulation came to a close. The Black Knights gave up an extra-man Bucknell goal with 1:16 to play in the fourth quarter which eventually resulted in the Black Knights' second overtime test of the season.
Neither team found the back of the net in the first overtime despite combining for five shots. The teams played much of the extra time back-and-forth at a frenzied pace. The Black Knights accounted for the only shot, Lynch's game-winner, of the final frame.
PATRIOT LEAGUE HONORS BUCKLEY, PALMIERI
Two days after anchoring the Army defense in a thrilling 6-5 double overtime win at No. 15 Bucknell on Saturday, junior Brendan Buckley and senior Zach Palmieri picked up their first career Patriot League weekly honors. Buckley garnered Patriot League Defensive Player of the Week and Palmieri nabbed Patriot League Goalkeeper of the Week laurels.
In the midst of a breakout season as one of the top close defenders in the league, Buckley amassed a career-high five caused turnovers and held Bucknell's leading scorer, Billy Eisenreich, to just two points (1G, 1A) on Saturday. Eisenreich entered the game as the nation's third-leading point producer and ranked second nationally in assists.
Palmieri picked up his fifth win of the season as Army's starting goalkeeper on Saturday. He allowed just five goals in over 64 minutes between the pipes, while recording a 66.7 save percentage along the way. Palmieri reached double-digit saves for the fifth time this season with 10 against the Bison. He turned away back-to-back shots with 23 and 18 seconds remaining in regulation to help send the game to the first of two overtime sessions.
ALBERICI SOUND BITES ...
(Ref.: Reflecting back on the win at Bucknell)
"It was a tough game all the way through against one of the best teams in the country. All week long we had talked about expecting to win. We've been right there in a number of close games and it just hasn't gone our way. The guys showed some great mental toughness out there and there was a lot of confidence in our huddle. I think that's what carried the day."
(Ref.: Devin Lynch scoring his second career 2OT game-winner)
"Devin is about as fast of a player as there is in the country. When he got to the middle of the field, I knew he was going to win the race. He's an outstanding senior captain who saw an opportunity to make a play and got it done."
(Ref.: The Army-Navy rivalry returning to Michie Stadium)
"It's exciting and we're anticipating a great crowd. It'll be exciting for our guys to play in front of thousands of people here at Michie Stadium. Hopefully they will feed off that energy."
(Ref.: Preparing to take on Navy this week)
"It is our goal every week to prepare to be mentally at our best, physically at our best and emotionally at our best. This week will be no different. Of course with it being Army-Navy week, the distractions and additional duties our guys may have come in to play, but I have complete confidence in their ability to focus on the task at hand."
Under the direction of an entirely new coaching staff, Navy brings a 5-5 overall record and 3-2 Patriot League mark into Saturday's game. The Mids were riding a four-game win streak, but have lost each of their last two contests heading into this weekend's bout with rival Army.
First-year head coach Rick Sowell and his Mids are coming off a 13-6 loss against nationally ranked Maryland last Friday, despite being within one goal (6-5) at halftime. Navy fell short of the Patriot League Tournament for the first time since its establishment in 2004 last spring, but a win this Saturday against Army would put the Mids back in the field.
A young, but very capable Navy offense includes sophomore attackmen Tucker Hull and Sam Jones at the forefront. Hull, the 2011 Patriot League Rookie of the Year, leads the team and ranks fifth in the NCAA averaging 4.6 points per game. His 46 points on the year have come on 23 goals and 23 assists. Jones, an Annapolis, Md., native, finished last season tied for a team-high with 23 goals. He has 25 points (14G, 11A) this spring.
Defensively, the Mids have relied on senior and three-year starter R.J. Wickham in goal for all 10 games. An honorable mention All-American in 2010, Wickham's 10.5 saves per game rank 15th nationally. Navy's defense surrenders and average of 9.6 goals per game, the second-most of any team in the league.
THE LONG GRAY LINE
Army will forgo its traditional home white uniforms to sport its gray jersey tops and shorts for Saturday's game against Navy. The Black Knights reserve the gray uniforms, a nod to West Point's "Long Gray Line," only for games against other military schools. Since debuting the unique look in 2008, the Black Knights are 7-1 against other military schools, including four wins over rival the Mids. Army sported the grays for the 2010 Patriot League Championship game when the Black Knights beat Navy, 11-8, at Michie Stadium. Army is 1-1 when wearing gray this season, recording a 14-8 win over VMI on Feb. 18 and suffering a 9-8 overtime loss against Air Force in Houston, Texas.
TAKE A SIP OF THIS
Not only has senior midfielder Derek Sipperly taken all but one of Army's face-offs over the last five games, he has done so with much success. Sipperly has won 62 of his 100 decisions, resulting in a 62.0 win percentage. He currently ranks second in the Patriot League with a 54.9 win percentage on the season and has taken the bulk of the Black Knights' face-offs over the last three years.
THE BUCK STOPS HERE
Junior defenseman Brendan Buckley has shown all the makings of a breakout 2012 season. The Massapequa, N.Y., native leads the team and ranks sixth a in the country veraging 2.36 caused turnovers per game. Buckley has marked some of the top players in the country, including the 2011 USILA Player of the Year Rob Pannell of Cornell, current national scoring leader Peter Baum of Colgate and most recently Billy Eisenreich of Bucknell, who ranks second nationally in assists. A two-year starter on the Black Knights' close defense, Buckley held Eisenreich to two points (1G, 1A) and recorded a career-high five caused turnovers last Saturday en route to his first-ever Patriot League Defensive Player of the Week nod on Monday. A member of the 2011 Patriot League All-Academic Team, Buckley ranks 16th in the West Point Class of 2013.
NO COMPROMISING THE COMPETITION
Notorious for playing one of the toughest schedules in the nation, Army has and will go up against its fair share of top 20 schools in 2012. The Black Knights already have or will face three teams out of the current top five - No. 2/2 Massachusetts (L, 12-9), No. 3/3 Johns Hopkins (May 5), and No. 5/5 Cornell (L, 18-7). The Black Knights also visited perennial power No. 13/14 Syracuse and came up just short in a 10-9 loss at the Carrier Dome. The Black Knights are coming off their first win over a nationally ranked opponent with a 6-5 double overtime win last Saturday at then-No. 15/13 Bucknell. In all, Army will go up against seven teams currently ranked in the nation's top 20, including No. 11/11 Lehigh (L, 7-6), No. 18/18 Bucknell (W, 6-5 - 2OT), and No. 14/12 Colgate (L, 15-13) during Patriot League play.
CENTURY MAN x2
Junior attackman Garrett Thul became the ninth player in Army's rich 95-year history of lacrosse to reach the 100-goal mark with his first of four goals (21st career hat trick) in a 9-8 win over Rutgers on March 6 at Michie Stadium. Scott Finlay (West Point '78) holds the career goals record with 140. Thul's 114 career goals are currently seventh all-time at Army and rank fifth among active players in the NCAA.
With four goals and an assist in a 24-7 win over visiting Wagner on Feb. 15, Thul became the 29th player in Army's 95-year history to reach the 100-point mark. Fittingly, Thul's 100th point came as he completed his 17th career hat trick just three minutes into the second quarter. The Flemington, N.J., native is the eighth Army player in 95 years to reach 100 points during his junior season and 10th overall to reach the feat before beginning his senior season. All-time points leader Tim Pearson (West Point '02) and All-American Tom Cafaro (West Point '71) surpassed the century mark during their sophomore years.
HOME SWEET MICHIE
This season marks the 89th year that Michie Stadium has served as the "home" of Army football and lacrosse. Only 15 Football Bowl Subdivision stadiums, and just six east of the Mississippi River, are older than the fabled venue. Michie Stadium has hosted NCAA Men's Lacrosse Tournament games seven times, while the Black Knights have authored a 68-34 record at home over the last 13 years. Army is 3-2 at home in 2012.
As the college lacrosse season got under way in February, the first Tewaaraton Award Watch List was released and included Army senior long stick midfielder Tim Henderson and junior attackman Garrett Thul as early contenders. The Tewaaraton Award was formally established in August of 2000 and is presented annually to the top men's and women's college lacrosse player in the country. The list will be narrowed to 25 players in late April with the five finalists being announced in mid-May. Henderson and Thul will be looking to follow in the footsteps of All-Americans Jeremy Boltus (West Point `11) and John Walker (West Point `06), who represented Army among the five national finalists for the Tewaaraton Award in 2011 and 2005, respectively.
GLESENER GETTING IT DONE
When considering the graduation of one of the most decorated classes in recent memory last May, head coach Joe Alberici knew he would rely on a strong crop of freshmen to challenge for playing time. Living up to a lofty billing has been John Glesener, a highly touted midfielder out of Camillus, N.Y. The West Genessee graduate spent 2010-11 at the USMA Prep School and was named No. 1 on Inside Lacrosse's Post-Graduate Top 10 Recruits list at the start of the summer. He has started all 11 games this season, totaled 24 points (14G, 10A), is Army's second-leading scorer and was named Patriot League Rookie of the Week on Feb. 20. Glesener completed his first career hat trick and tallied a career-high five points (3G, 2A) in a 9-8 win over Rutgers (March 6) under the Michie Stadium lights. His 14 goals this season are tied for 10th among freshmen in the NCAA.
Senior attackman Conor Hayes recorded his second and third career hat tricks in Army's first two wins of the season, leading to his first-ever Patriot League Offensive Player of the Week citation Feb. 20. Hayes scored off the opening face-off in both wins, totaled eight goals and registered a career-high five goals in a 14-8 win over VMI (Feb. 18). The Wilmington, Del., native's eight goals came on 11 shots. Through his first three years with the Black Knights, Hayes scored a total of 13 goals. Hayes, Army's third-leading scorer this season, has well surpassed that mark with 21 points (13G, 8A) so far in 2012.
OH CAPTAIN(S), MY CAPTAIN(S)
Seniors Tim Henderson, Brian LoRusso and Devin Lynch were selected to serve as tri-captains for the 2012 season. Henderson and LoRusso follow a family tradition of serving as a captain. Henderson's older brother, Bill (West Point '11) is the only two-time captain in the 95-year history of Army lacrosse. LoRusso's older brother, Kevin (West Point '09), was a team captain in 2009.
GO TO THE HEAD OF THE CLASS
Making their way through one of the most rigorous academic institutions in the country, Brendan Buckley and James MacGibbon are doing so in standout fashion. Both were named Dean's Pentathletes in the fall after achieving at least an A-minus grade in all courses in academic, military science, military development and physical education. To become a Pentathlete, the ability to focus in one area is not nearly enough. It is earned by achieving a 4.0 QPA (quality point average) and at least an A-minus in all courses in (1) academic, (2) military science, (3) military development and (4) physical education. The Pentathlete award showcases a cadet's ability to excel at four very different development areas. Buckley and MacGibbon have drawn significant time in all 11 games. Buckley has started every game as Army's top close defender and leads the team and ranks sixth in the country averaging 2.4 caused turnovers per game. MacGibbon has totaled six points (4G, 2A) this season and made his first career start in his home state against Air Force on March 10 in Houston, Texas.
The 2012 Army lacrosse team sports two pairs of brothers, as seniors Larry and Brian LoRusso are joined by rookies John and Dan Glesener. Both sets of brothers are a year apart, but entered the Academy as a part of the same class after attending the USMA Prep School. While the Gleseners are the first from their family to attend West Point, the LoRussos come from a long-standing tradition of playing Army lacrosse. Their older brother, Kevin LoRusso, was a two-time all-conference midfielder for the Black Knights before graduating in 2009. He recently finished a tour in Afghanistan and is currently stationed in Germany. The oldest of the four LoRusso brothers, Nick LoRusso, was a back-up goaltender at West Point from 2004-07 and deployed for his second tour in Afghanistan with the 10th Mountain Division at the end of February. In addition to the pair of brothers on this year's roster, the coaching staff features its own brand of family ties. First-year assistant coach Kyle Georgalas is the son of third-year volunteer assistant coach Ted Georgalas.
ON THE HORIZON
Army closes out the Patriot League regular season and celebrates Senior Day on Saturday, April 21, against Holy Cross. A noon face-off is scheduled. For tickets, visit www.goARMYsports.com or call 1-877-TIX-ARMY.