Lehigh head coach Kevin Cassese
May 1, 2012
CENTER VALLEY, Pa. – Players have not been announced yet for the contest, but the Patriot League will be well represented at the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association (USILA)/LaxWorld Division I-II North-South Senior All-Star game, set for May 25 at Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass. Army head coach Joe Alberici will serve in the same capacity for the North team, while the South squad will be led on the sidelines by Lehigh head coach Kevin Cassese.
In five seasons at Lehigh, Cassese has posted a record of 39-38 and guided the Mountain Hawks to two consecutive appearances in the Patriot League Tournament. So far in 2012, Lehigh has orchestrated its best season in school history, going 14-2 and capturing its first Patriot League championship after a 16-14 victory over Colgate Sunday in the tournament finals. Lehigh boasted a League-high eight selections to the All-League Team last week, while Cassese was named Coach of the Year by his peers and freshman Matt Poillon was tabbed Goalkeeper of the Year. Lehigh will be making its first appearance in the NCAA Tournament, and will find out its first-round opponent Sunday.
Alberici, the 2008 Patriot League Coach of the Year, is in his seventh season at the United States Military Academy with a career record of 64-57 and a 56-51 mark at Army. The Black Knights have qualified for eight consecutive Patriot League Tournaments, the last seven under his watch. He was on the sidelines when Army captured its first Patriot League Tournament title in 2010, and the Black Knights continued their season by upending defending national champion Syracuse, 9-8, in double overtime in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Army had five student-athletes named All-Leaguers last week, while senior Tim Henderson was tabbed Defensive Player of the Year and junior Brendan Buckley was named Patriot League Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Army is 7-7 this spring and concludes its regular season Saturday at 2 p.m. when it plays at No. 10/8 Johns Hopkins.
Cassese and Alberici went head-to-head Friday in the semifinals of the Patriot League Tournament. Lehigh emerged with a 13-7 victory in the programs' first meeting in the League postseason.
2012 marks the fourth straight season in which at least one Patriot League head coach is serving in the same capacity at the North-South games. Lafayette’s Terry Mangan guided the South squad in the Division I-II game last season, while former Colgate head coach Jim Nagle headed up the North team in 2010. Cassese is making his second appearance as a head coach in the North-South game, as he mentored the North squad in 2009.