Junior Dan Saltsman will anchor the Nittany Lion defense when No. 13 Penn State hosts Bucknell on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. and Rutgers on Saturday at 12 p.m.
The Penn State Nittany Lion lacrosse team, ranked No.13 in the latest USILA Coaches Poll, will face two tough opponents this week at Jeffrey Field. Head coach Glenn Thiel's crew will welcome Bucknell to Penn State on Wednesday for a 7:30 p.m. game under the lights. Then, on Saturday, Penn State hosts Rutgers in an ECAC match-up at 12 p.m.
Penn State is coming off a convincing 13-3 ECAC road win over St. John's last Saturday. Senior Nate Whitaker and junior Brian Boyle led Penn State to the win, its fourth straight victory. Whitaker scored four goals in the game while Boyle continued to establish himself as one of the ECAC's top set-up men with four assists and two goals for six points.
Boyle leads Penn State with 29 points off nine goals and 20 assists while Whitaker is second with 23 points off 20 goals (a team-high) and three assists. Senior Greg Gurenlian has a .595 face-off percentage and a team-best 53 ground balls. Freshman goalie Drew Adams has a superb 7.71 goals against average with 118 saves. As a team, Penn State has a .273 shot percentage and is scoring 9.44 goals per contest.
Bucknell enters the Wednesday night non-conference affair with a 5-7 overall mark, 2-3 in the Patriot League. The Bison are coming off a hard-fought 11-8 loss to No. 17 Denver. Bucknell is being led by Kirk Klett, who has 21 points off 20 goals and one assist. Joe Mele has 20 goals for 20 points as well. Bison goalie Matt Baran has a 6.99 goals against average with 107 saves and a 5-7 record.
Rutgers will carry a 5-5 overall mark into the Saturday showdown at Jeffrey Field, 2-2 in ECAC play. The Scarlet Knights are coming off a heart-breaking 13-12 overtime loss to No. 12 Syracuse. Rutgers is being led by Matt Gaines, who has 20 points off 16 goals and four assists. Keeper Greg Havalchak has a 6.65 goals against average with 108 saves.
Penn State returns to action next weekend, visiting Villanova on Friday night for a 7 p.m. contest in Philadelphia.
No. 13 Penn State (6-3, 4-1 ECAC) hosts two games this week. First, the Nittany Lions will welcome Bucknell (5-7, 2-3 Patriot) to Jeffrey Field for a 7:30 p.m. night game on Wednesday. Then, Rutgers (5-5, 2-2 ECAC) comes to town for a noon game on Saturday.
Penn State will visit Villanova on Friday, April 28, for a 7 p.m. contest.
BOYLE AND WHITAKER LEAD PENN STATE TO 13-3 WIN AT ST. JOHN'S
The Penn State Nittany Lion men's lacrosse team rode a superb defensive effort and the offensive fireworks of senior Nate Whitaker and junior Brian Boyle to a 13-3 rout of St. John's in ECAC men's lacrosse action. Head coach Glenn Thiel's Nittany Lions, ranked No. 14 in the nation, have now won four straight games. Whitaker scored four goals in the game while Boyle continued to establish himself as one of the ECAC's top set-up men with four assists and two goals for six points. The win was Penn State's fourth straight, each of which was an ECAC Lacrosse League victory.
ADAMS STELLAR PLAY IN NET LEADS LIONS TO ECAC ROAD WIN AT HOBART; EARNS ECAC DEFENSIVE P.O.W. HONORS
Freshman goalie Drew Adams faced 35 shots, 21 on goal, and had 17 saves in helping Penn State to its third straight conference victory. Adams' 17 saves in the game were his second highest total of the year to date. The rookie faced 21 shots on goal and allowed only four through to the back of the net. In a three-game stretch vs. Fairfield, UMass and Hobart, all ECAC wins, Adams allowed only 15 goals (5.0 per game) and had 40 saves (13.3 per game). He was named ECAC Defensive Player of the Week (4/10) for his efforts, the second weekly honor he has earned this year (he was Rookie of the Week on March 13.
WHITAKER SPARKS PENN STATE TO 7-5 WIN OVER NO. 7 UMASS; EARNS ECAC OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK AWARD
Senior Nate Whitaker had four of Penn State's seven goals in the Nittany Lions' 7-5 win over No. 7 and league-leading UMass on Saturday. The Nittany Lion senior captain had two of his goals in the fourth quarter, the only two goals scored in the final stanza. Whitaker connected on a sizzling .667 percent of his shots, scoring four times on six shots taken. He also had two ground balls in the contest. The performance earned him ECAC Co-Offensive Player of the Week honors (4/3).
ADAMS SUPERB IN NET AGAIN AS LIONS DOWN NO. 7 UMASS
Freshman goalie Drew Adams limited league-leading and No. 7 UMass to only five goals in Penn State's 7-5 win over the Minutemen. The goal total was a season-low for UMass, which entered the game averaging 12.71 goals per game, third in the nation. Adams had 12 saves in the game, four of which came in the critical fourth quarter. For the second straight contest, Adams shut out his opponent in the fourth quarter. He has allowed only 11 goals in consecutive wins over No. 20 Fairfield and No. 7 UMass.
EREMUS AND ADAMS SPARK LIONS TO 11-6 ROAD WIN AT NO. 20 FAIRFIELD
John Eremus scored four second half goals and goalie Drew Adams limited No. 20 Fairfield to only one second half goal, sparking Penn State to an 11-6 road win over Fairfield in ECAC Lacrosse League action. Eremus also had an assist for a game high five points while Adams totalled 11 saves, nine of which came in the second half.
HEIM AND ADAMS EARN ECAC PLAYER OF THE WEEK HONORS (3/13)
Pat Heim and Drew Adams were honored this week as ECAC Lacrosse Co-Offensive and Rookie of the Week respectively. The duo helped head coach Glenn Thiel's squad to a 2-0 week, including a win over No. 14 Dartmouth. Heim, a junior, was named Co-Offensive Player of the Week along with Georgetown's Dave Paolisso. Heim scored a game-high five goals, including the game-winner in overtime, in Penn State's 14-13 win at Ohio State on Saturday. He also added two assists in Penn State's 11-10 win over No. 14 Dartmouth. Heim now has nine points off six goals and three assists. Adams, a freshman, was honored as ECAC Lacrosse Rookie of the Week for getting his first two collegiate win and manning the net in both of Penn State's victories last week. Adams had 14 saves to help Penn State beat No. 14 Dartmouth and then collected nine in the win at Ohio State. Adams had 23 saves in two games and has 58 on the year.
BOYLE STAYS HOT WITH FIVE POINTS VS. STONY BROOK
Brian Boyle continued his outstanding offensive efforts with three goals and two assists vs. Stony Brook on 3/18. Boyle now leads Penn State with 17 points off seven goals and ten assists.
WHITAKER NOW 9TH ON PENN STATE'S ALL-TIME SCORING LIST; SENIOR 9TH IN CAREER GOALS AS WELL
Senior attackman Nate Whitaker has 20 goals this year and now has 93 career goals, tied for ninth all-time with Bill Hess, who played from 1956-58. Whitaker also has 23 points this season. He has 132 career points, putting him in ninth place on Penn State's all-time scoring list. Next up for the senior to pass is eighth-place Bill Hess, who had 134 from '56-58.
HEIM NETS FIVE GOALS TO LEAD PENN STATE TO OVERTIME WIN VS. OHIO STATE
Junior Pat Heim scored five goals to lead Penn State to a 14-13 overtime win at Ohio State on March 11, 2006. Heim scored the game's first goal and then the game-winner in overtime to spur Penn State on to the road win.
BOYLE NOTCHES FIRST GOAL OF SEASON AT LOYOLA; ADDS TWO ASSISTS
Brian Boyle notched his first goal of the season in Penn State's 9-6 loss at Loyola on 3/4. Boyle also had two assists.
PENN STATE RANKED NO. 13 LATEST USILA COACHES POLL (4/17)
Virginia maintained its hold on the No. 1 spot, followed by Hofstra (2), Maryland (3), Navy (4) and Cornell (5). Other ECAC Lacrosse League teams in the rankings are Georgetown (7) Massachusetts (8), Penn State (13) and Loyola (16), giving the loop 25 percent of the nation's top 16 teams. Rutgers is also receiving votes; meaning five of the league's eight teams are either ranked or receiving votes.
PENN STATE RANKED NO. 13 LATEST INSIDE LACROSSE POLL (4/17)
The Penn State Nittany Lion men's lacrosse team, under the guidance of head coach Glenn Thiel, ranked No. 13 in the latest Inside Lacrosse Media Poll. Virginia (1), Hofstra (2), Navy (3), Maryland (4) and ECAC foe Georgetown (5) comprise the top five. Massachusetts (8), Penn State (13) and Loyola (24) are also ranked in the poll while no other teams are receiving votes. In all, four of the conference's eight teams are either ranked or receiving votes.
LIONS GO 2-0-1 IN EXHIBITIONS
The Nittany Lion lacrosse team opened up the 2006 exhibition season in fine fashion by going 1-0-1 in exhibitions on Saturday, Feb. 4, in Holuba Hall. Penn State tied No. 1 and defending national champion Johns Hopkins 9-9 thanks to five points from Brian Boyle (1 goal, four assists) and three goals from Matt Radecic. The Lions beat a young Robert Morris team 13-6 behind two-goal games from Chris Mulqueen, Bubba Scott, Kevin Hershner and Mike Toner. Penn State then downed Lehigh 15-6, thanks to four goals from John Eremus and six points (three goals, three assists) from freshman Rob Forster.
BENJAMIN, GURENLIAN AND WHITAKER NAMED TEAM CAPTAINS
Three talented seniors have been named co-captains of the Penn State Nittany Lion men's lacrosse team as announced by veteran head coach Glenn Thiel. Keith Benjamin (Short Hills, N.J.), Greg Gurenlian (Springfield, Pa.) and Nate Whitaker (Great Falls, VA.) will assume captain's duties for the upcoming campaign. Benjamin, a defender, is a three-year letterman and started all 15 games for Penn State last year. He notched 25 ground balls, which was fifth on the team. Gurenlian, middle/face-off middie, was voted team Most Valuable Player last season after leading the team in ground balls with 111 and scoring 12 points off five goals and seven assists. Gurenlian led Penn State in face-off percentage at (.636) and was second on the team in shot percentage (.500). Whitaker, attackman, was a second team All-ECAC pick last season and was once again Penn State's leading scorer in 2005 with 44 points off 31 goals and 13 assists. Both goal and assist totals were team bests and his three game-winning goals was tops on the team as well.
THREE NITTANY LIONS EARN PRE-SEASON ALL-AMERICAN HONORS
Three Penn State Nittany Lion men's lacrosse players have been named to the 2006 Inside Lacrosse/Face-Off Pre-Season All-America team. Senior Greg Gurenlian (Springfield, Pa.), senior Nate Whitaker (Great Falls, Va.) and junior Pat Heim (Wayne, Pa.) were all listed by the publication.
Gurenlian was named a third-team pre-season All-American as one the face-off specialist. A captain on this year's team, Gurenlian had a .636 face-off percentage last year, winning 194 of 305 attempts. He notched 12 points on five goals and seven assists as well. He also led Penn State with 111 ground balls. Whitaker was named to the Honorable Mention squad on attack. The senior captain was Penn State's leading scorer in 2005 with 44 points off 31 goals and 13 assists. Whitaker collected 17 ground balls as well. Heim, a junior, was also on the Honorable Mention squad as midfielder. Heim scored 33 points during his sophomore campaign, scoring 22 goals and dishing off 11 assists. He also nabbed 24 ground balls.
SOPHOMORE MAX VANARSDALE OUT FOR YEAR
Returning starter Max VanArsdale will miss the 2006 season after undergoing ankle surgery. The stand-out attackman will red-shirt this year and carry sophomore eligibility into the 2007 campaign.
NITTANY LIONS LAND IN TOP THREE OF ECAC LACROSSE LEAGUE PRE-SEASON COACHES POLL
The Penn State Nittany Lion men's lacrosse team, under the guidance of veteran head coach Glenn Thiel, has grabbed a spot in the top three of the 2006 ECAC Lacrosse League Preseason Coaches Poll. Penn State placed just behind preseason favorite Georgetown and Massachusetts.
The Nittany Lions are coming off a 9-6 season that saw them win a share of the league crown with a 5-1 mark. Penn State also earned its second trip to the NCAA Tournament in three years. Thiel's squad returns seven starters and 24 lettermen from a season ago and is coming off a solid 2-0-1 exhibition slate.
Georgetown has been picked first by the league coaches for seven straight years and has won the title five times during that span. Massachusetts and Penn State shared the league crown last season with identical 5-1 records. Rounding out the league poll is Loyola (4), Fairfield (5), Hobart (6), Rutgers (7) and St. John's (8).
WHITAKER AND HEIM NAMED TO ECAC LACROSSE PRESEASON ALL-LEAGUE TEAM
Penn State Nittany Lion men's lacrosse players Nate Whitaker and Pat Heim have been named to the 2006 ECAC Lacrosse Preseason All-League team. The duo received two of the nine slots on the squad, which is voted on by the league's eight head coaches. Whitaker, a senior co-captain, is one of four attackmen on the team. He returns as Penn State's leading scorer from last season, netting 44 points off 31 goals and 13 assists (both team highs as well). Whitaker is also carrying a 42-game scoring streak, which began the first game of his freshman year.
Heim, a junior, was a 2005 All-ECAC Lacrosse first team pick last year after scoring 33 points off 22 goals and 11 assists. He and Whitaker are both Inside Lacrosse honorable mention preseason All-Americans this year as well. Massachusetts senior Sean Morris was named Preseason Offensive Player of the Year while Jack Reid, also of Massachusetts, was named Preseason Defensive Player of the Year.
Penn State opens up its regular season this coming Sunday with a 1 p.m. game at Notre Dame. The Nittany Lions, under the guidance of veteran head coach Glenn Thiel, are coming off a 9-6 season that saw them win a share of the ECAC Lacrosse title with a 5-1 league record and earn their second trip to the NCAA Championship Tournament in the last three years.
WHITAKER AND HEIM NAMED TO ECAC PRESEASON ALL-LEAGUE TEAM
Nate Whitaker and Pat Heim have been named to the 2006 ECAC Lacrosse Preseason All-League team. The duo received two of the nine slots on the squad, which is voted on by the league's eight head coaches. Whitaker, a senior co-captain, is one of four attackmen on the team. He returns as Penn State's leading scorer from last season, netting 44 points off 31 goals and 13 assists (both team highs as well). Whitaker is also carrying a 42-game scoring streak, which began the first game of his freshman year. Heim, a junior, was a 2005 All-ECAC Lacrosse first team pick last year after scoring 33 points off 22 goals and 11 assists. He and Whitaker are both Inside Lacrosse honorable mention preseason All-Americans this year as well.