April 24, 2014
VILLANOVA, Pa. - Villanova (5-8, 3-2 BIG EAST) hosts the Providence Friars (3-11, 0-5 BIG EAST) this Saturday afternoon for the regular season finale of the 2014 season. Game time is slated for 1 p.m. at Villanova Stadium and will serve as Alumni and Senior Day to honor the eight graduating seniors on the Villanova roster.
The contest marks just the 6th overall meeting between the two schools with the all-time series favoring Villanova at 4-1. The two sides have met every season dating back to the start of the BIG EAST Men's Lacrosse Conference in 2010.
Following Villanova's win over Rutgers on April 12th, the Wildcats have secured a berth in the BIG EAST Championship set to take place May 2nd and 4th at Villanova Stadium. Denver and Marquette have also secured spots in the championship while the final spot and seedings are still up for grabs.
Villanova This Season: Villanova enters Wednesday's contest with a 5-8 overall record and 3-2 BIG EAST mark after falling to #7 Johns Hopkins on Wednesday night. Villanova started strong and rallied in the second half, but a six-goal run by Johns Hopkins gave the Blue Jays momentum as JHU topped the Wildcats 13-7. The contest marked the final non-conference game for Villanova this year.
As of the latest USILA Coaches poll released on Monday, April 21st, Villanova has scheduled seven ranked opponents on their calendar this season: No. 3 Denver, No. 5 Maryland, No. 7 Johns Hopkins, No. 10 Pen, No. 16 Drexel, No. 18 Lehigh and No. 19 Princeton.
`Nova Offense: Senior Kevin O'Neil (Cockeysville, Md.) leads the team with 35 points via 25 goals and 10 assists while sophomore Jack Curran (Fair Haven, N.J.) follows closely behind with 29 points. 20 Wildcats have posted points through 13 games this season. Senior face-off specialist Thomas Croonquist (North Caldwell, N.J.) has posted a .489 win percentage this season, taking 134-of-274 attempts.
'Nova Defense: Freshman goalkeeper Dan Willis (Moorestown, N.J.) posts a 9.75 GAA while making 125 saves on the season. His save percentage currently stands at .500. The starting trio at close defense, freshman Danny Sweeney (Glenelg, Md.) and seniors Chris Conroy (Chatham, N.J.) and Chris Piccirilli (Davidsonville, Md.) have combined for 51 ground balls and 40 caused turnovers while senior John LoCascio (Fairfield, N.J.) has tallied 63 ground balls and 30 caused turnovers.
A Look at Providence: Providence owns a 3-11 overall record and 0-5 mark in BIG EAST games this season. Wins on the year have come via Vermont (W, 8-6), Boston University (W, 10-7) and Fairfield (W, 14-11). The Friars are on a 10 game losing streak and will finish their season on Saturday against the Wildcats for the second straight year.
Friars Offense: Providence averages 8.36 goals per game on offense and surrenders 10.71 goals per game defensively. Andrew Barton (28g, 15a) leads the team with 43 points this season while Sean Wright (21g, 19a) follows behind with 40 points. 14 different players have posted points for the Friars this season.
Friars Defense: Tyler Himes has been the primary starter in net and has played just over 750 minutes this season. His goals against average currently stands at 10.52 while his save percentage is .515.
The Last Meeting (4/27/13): Villanova used 14 different point scorers in an outstanding team effort to pace themselves to a 19-11 victory over the Providence Friars at Villanova Stadium. With the win, the Wildcats secured at least a share of the BIG EAST Regular Season Championship by finishing the 2013 conference slate with a 5-1 record.