April 26, 2010
Center Valley, Pa.--The field has been set for the 2010 Patriot League Men's Lacrosse Tournament. A make-or-break week yielded positive results for Army and Bucknell. The Black Knights won twice to secure the top seed and homefield advantage in the Patriot League Tournament, while the Bison claimed the final tournament berth thanks to a win over Colgate.
Patriot League Men's Lacrosse Release - 4.26.10
Patriot League Offensive Player of the Week
Dante Fantoni, Lehigh Fr., A, Hapauge, N.Y.
Fantoni scored the game-winning goal in both of Lehigh’s wins over nationally ranked foes. He scored four goals and scooped up a career-best four ground balls in the Mountain Hawks’ triumph over No. 9/9 Villanova. He propelled Lehigh to victory with the game-winning goal in the second overtime period. He then tallied two goals and a career-high two assists in Lehigh’s 10-9 win at rival Lafayette. His second goal gave the Mountain Hawks an overtime victory. It is the first time Fantoni has been named Patriot League Offensive Player of the Week.
Patriot League Defensive Player of the Week
Jason Neithamer, Bucknell So., D, Alexandria, Va.
Neithamer was part of a defensive unit that held Colgate scoreless for a 41-minute stretch in the Bison’s 8-7 overtime victory. He led Bucknell with five ground balls, including a key ground ball on the overtime faceoff. It is the first time in his career that Neithamer has been named Patriot League Defensive Player of the Week.
Patriot League Goalkeeper of the Week
RJ Wickham, Navy So., GK, Penn Yan, N.Y.
Wickham got the win as Navy scored its first victory over Johns Hopkins since 1974. Wickham made seven of his nine saves after halftime, including four straight from point-blank range to close the contest. He stopped a five-yard, one-on-one shot by All-American Michael Kimmel with 2:39 left in overtime to preserve the Mids’ upset hopes. It is the fourth time this season that Wickham has been named Patriot League Goalkeeper of the Week.
Patriot League Rookie of the Week
Garrett Thul, Army Fr., A, Flemington, N.J.
Thul tallied nine goals and two assists to help Army record a pair of Patriot League victories and finish the League season with a 6-0 mark. He notched four goals and an assist in the Black Knights’ 15-14 win at No. 19 Lafayette. He followed that with a career-high five goals and an assist for a career-best six points in Army’s 13-10 victory over Holy Cross. It is the fourth time that Thul has been named Patriot League Rookie of the Week.
Honorable Mention Performances Last Week
Jeremy Boltus, Army
Jr., A, Baldwinsville, N.Y.
Produced a career-high eight points in Army’s 15-14 win at No. 19 Lafayette. Notched the game-winning goal with 3:26 remaining in the game against the Leopards. Added a goal and an assist in Army’s 13-10 win over Holy Cross.
Tom Palesky, Army
Jr., GK, Plano, Texas
Registered a pair of double-digit save performances as Army went 2-0 during the week. Made 18 saves in the Black Knights’ 15-14 win at No. 19 Lafayette. Stopped 10 shots in Army’s 13-10 victory over Holy Cross.
Kyle Feeney, Bucknell
Fr., GK, Greenwich, Conn.
Made 11 saves in Bucknell’s 8-7 overtime win against Colgate, sealing a Patriot League Tournament berth for the Bison. His final save came with just over a minute left in regulation and the game tied at 7-7.
Ben McCabe, Colgate
Jr., A, Brunswick, Maine
Notched three goals and one assist in the Raiders’ regular-season finale at Bucknell. Scored all three goals in the fourth quarter to aid a six-goal comeback by Colgate and send the game into overtime.
Kenny Minor, Holy Cross
Sr., M, South Hadley, Mass.
Scored five goals during the week, including two against Patriot League-leading Army. Produced three of the Crusaders’ seven goals, including the game-winner, in Holy Cross’ 7-6 triumph over Bryant.
Andy Warner, Navy
Jr., A, Corning, N.Y.
Tallied the game-winning goal in Navy’s 9-8 overtime triumph against No. 17/19 Johns Hopkins, the Mids’ first victory over the Blue Jays since 1974. Warner also recorded two assists in the win.
Patriot League Notebook
All About Army
Army was picked fourth in the Patriot League preseason coaches’ poll, but the Black Knights find themselves atop the standings at the end of regular-season play. Army produced victories over No. 19 Lafayette and Holy Cross to close the regular season with a 6-0 Patriot League mark. As a result of finishing with the top Patriot League record, the Black Knights will be the top seed and the host of the upcoming Patriot League Tournament. It is the second time in the past three seasons that Army has claimed the top seed in the tournament.
For the 12th time in the history of the Patriot League, a team has closed its regular season with an unblemished League record. Army closed with a 6-0 Patriot League mark, making it two straight years that a squad has finished without a League loss. Army has finished undefeated in Patriot League regular-season contests a record seven times, though it is the first time since 1998 that the Black Knights have gone without a Patriot League loss. Bucknell (1996, 2001, 2009) and Navy (2004, 2007) are the only other Patriot League programs to have finished the Patriot League regular season undefeated.
Patriot League teams knocked off a pair of ranked non-League foes during the week. Navy defeated No. 17/19 Johns Hopkins in overtime, giving the Mids their first win over the Blue Jays in 36 years. Lehigh, which also scored a Patriot League win over No. 19 Lafayette, scored an overtime victory over No. 9/9 Villanova.
Playing After The Whistle
Only three teams in the nation have played four or more overtime games this season. All three teams come from the Patriot League. Army and Bucknell have both played four overtime contests, while Navy have played five. Just three more schools have played at least three overtime games, with two of them, Colgate and Lehigh, coming from the Patriot League. All seven Patriot League teams have played at least one overtime game this season. Holy Cross is the only one that has not played multiple overtime games.
Wickham Named A Tewaaraton Trophy Nominee
Navy sophomore goalkeeper RJ Wickham was one of 26 players to be selected as a nominee for the 2010 Tewaaraton Trophy, it was announced last week by the Greater Washington Sports Alliance. Recognized as the most prized award in college lacrosse, the Tewaaraton Award Foundation released its "Watch List" in early March, a list which grew to nearly 100 names and included seven Patriot League student-athletes.
Army The Black Knights finished unbeaten in Patriot League play for a record seventh time. It was the first time since 1998 that Army closed League play without a loss. It also marked the first time that the Black Knights won six games in Patriot League competition. Army closed Patriot League play with two wins last week, knocking off No. 19 Lafayette and Holy Cross. Junior attackman Jeremy Boltus registered 10 points while junior goalkeeper Tom Palesky racked up 28 saves in the two victories. As a result of finishing atop the Patriot League standings, the Black Knights will be the top seed and the host team for the 2010 Patriot League Tournament. Army will open the tournament against fourth-seeded Bucknell in a semifinal rematch from last year’s tournament.
Bucknell The Bison won their final two League games to claim the final position in the Patriot League Tournament. Bucknell held off Colgate for an 8-7 overtime victory to edge the Raiders for the last tournament berth. Patriot League Preseason Offensive Player of the Year Austin Winter was held scoreless until the overtime period when he netted the game-winner with 55 seconds remaining. Winter now has at least one point in 57 of his 58 career games. He has 20 goals and 23 assists this year, his second career 20-20 season. The Bison will open the Patriot League Tournament on Friday against top-seeded Army in West Point.
Colgate The Raiders came up one goal short of advancing to the Patriot League Tournament, falling by an 8-7 count in overtime at Bucknell. Freshman Peter Baum scored twice and leads the Raiders with 27 goals. Junior Jim Carroll won 50 percent of his faceoffs, including 4-of-5 in the fourth quarter against League-leading faceoff man Jake Clarke. Colgate will play its final game of the season when it takes on No. 3/3 Maryland on May 8. After the season, head coach Jim Nagle will coach the Division I/II North Team at the 68th annual USILA/Lax World North/South Senior All-Star Games.
Holy Cross The Crusaders went 1-1 during their final week of competition. Holy Cross scored a 7-6 non-League victory over Bryant on Tuesday before dropping a 13-10 decision at Army on Saturday. Junior defender Doug Broussard tallied 10 ground balls during the week, including six in the win over Bryant. Broussard closed the season with a career-best 73 ground balls. He has 137 career ground balls, more than any other current Crusader.
Lafayette The Leopards closed the regular season with three straight losses, including two defeats last week. Lafayette was dealt a 15-14 decision by Army on Tuesday before falling in overtime to rival Lehigh by a 10-9 margin. Senior goalkeeper Vinny DePasquale made 24 saves during the week, including 13 against Lehigh. Stefan Bauer had a 12-point week. He produced two goals and four assists against Army before unleashing six assists against Lehigh. Steve Serling and Matt Mersky also had strong weeks, notching eight and seven goals, respectively. The Leopards will play in the Patriot League Tournament for the first time in school history on Friday. Third-seeded Lafayette will open up against second-seeded Navy.
Lehigh The Mountain Hawks produced two overtime wins against ranked foes last week. Freshman Dante Fantoni scored the game-winner in Lehigh’s 16-15 win over No. 9/9 Villanova. Fantoni came through once again with the game-winner against No. 19 Lafayette. Fantoni finishes the season with the team lead in goals (26) and points (40). He scored multiple goals in seven games and registered five hat tricks.
Navy The Mids knocked off No. 17/19 Johns Hopkins for the first time since 1974. Andy Warner scored the game-winner with 10 seconds left in overtime, snapping a 36-game losing streak against the Blue Jays. Sophomore goalkeeper RJ Wickham made nine saves, including seven after halftime. Navy, which has won five Patriot League championships in its six years in the League, will aim for its sixth title this weekend. The Mids will begin the tournament against No. 3 Lafayette on Friday.