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Strength: Goaltender Austin Kaut (pictured) and the defense have been downright nasty during the Nittany Lions' 10-game winning streak, the longest in the country. Attackers Jack Forster, Shane Sturgis and TJ Sanders form a unit with bite.
Weakness: Midfield scorers. Tom LaCrosse (22, 3) is the only Lions midfielder who is a proven commodity.
X-factor: Coach Jeff Tambroni is in his third season in Happy Valley. He spent 10 years as the coach at Cornell, leading the Big Red to three Championship Weekends, including the 2009 title game. He has used man-to-man and zone defensive schemes effectively.
Notable: Penn State has been playing lacrosse since 1913 and qualified for the 2003 and 2005 NCAA tournaments under coach Glenn Thiel. The road to Philadelphia is uncharted territory for this rising program.
Bracketology: If Penn State holds serve in the Colonial Athletic Association tournament, it should host a first-round game.
March 9, 2012