March 31, 2009
Setting the Scene... On the heels of a record-setting win over Villanova, the Sacred Heart men's lacrosse teams opens a four game road trip with a visit to Manhattan College Wednesday afternoon. The non-conference game is set to get underway at 3:30 pm at Gaelic Park in Riverdale, NY.
The Series... The Pioneers are 7-2 all-time versus Manhattan. After losing at home in 2007, SHU rebounded last year on its home field. The previous Manhattan win came during the 2004 season also at SHU. The first-ever meeting took place during the 1999 season with the Pioneers earning the win at home that set off a five-game win streak in the series.
Last Meeting... Sacred Heart had nine different players score goals led by junior Dan Casciano who led the way with three as the Pioneers dominated the second and third quarters en route to a 14-6 win over Manhattan College last year at Campus Field. The Pioneers out scored the Japsers 10-2 over the second and third quarters.
Historic Night... In the longest game in CAA lacrosse history, the Pioneers won a five-overtime marathon against Villanova Saturday night, 8-7. It was the longest game in Sacred Heart lacrosse history, topping a two overtime game against Butler in 2004. Sophomore goaltender Zack Frank made a school record 27 saves in the game. Sophomore Jon Flood scored the game winning goal with six seconds left in the fifth overtime. Senior Bobby Rushton scored two goals for the Pioneers. Junior Timmy Katz had a goal and an assist, the helper coming on the game winner. The Pioneers are now 2-1 in one goal games this year, with both wins coming overtime.
Katz Leading the Offense... After being one of the top attackers last season, Junior Timmy Katz has picked up right where he left off. Katz leads the Pioneer attack with 15 goals and three assists on the year. He earned CAA Player of the Week honors on March 10 after scoring the overtime game-winner against Hartford. He scored four of SHU's five goals in one goal loss against Hofstra on March 21.
Record Setter/Award Winner... Sophomore Zack Frank earned Player of the Week honors from three different organizations for the week of March 23-29. Frank was named the Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Week He also was tabbed the Nike/Inside Lacrosse Division I Player of the Week and the Turfer/New England Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association Player of the Week. Frank made a school record 27 saves in Sacred Heart's five overtime victory over Villanova Saturday night. Fifteen of those stops came in the fourth quarter and overtime as the Pioneers protected a one goal lead and then held off a Villanova onslaught in the extra sessions. Frank made nine stops in the fourth quarter and made six saves in the five overtime sessions. Frank also picked up nine groundballs in the game.
Scouting the Jaspers... Manhattan starts the week with a 4-5 record, having had a three game winning streak snapped in a loss to Siena on Saturday. James Synoweiz leads the Manhattan attack with 22 goals on the season. Joe Variano (12 goals) and Salvator Spatarellla (14 goals) complement the attack behind Synoweiz. John Geagan has made every start in goal for the Jaspers this year, posting an 11.10 goals against average.
Up Next... The Pioneers continue their road trip Saturday when they visit CAA rival Towson in a game set for a 2:00 pm face-off.