In the grand scheme, Towson's 9-8 loss at Fairfield was not crippling. The No. 19 Tigers (7-4, 3-1 Colonial Athletic Association) can still capture at least a share of the conference title and secure the top seed and the right to host the league tournament on May 4 and May 6 by defeating No. 10 Hofstra (11-1, 3-1) at Johnny Unitas Stadium on Saturday.
But coach Shawn Nadelen viewed the setback to the Stags (4-9, 1-3) as an opportunity the team failed to grab.
"We don't look at that game as putting us in position to get first place or home-field advantage or anything like that, but it was an opportunity for us to be able to execute at the level that we expect to, and we didn't do that," he said Wednesday morning. "So we missed out on an opportunity after preparing all week to play a really good lacrosse team in Fairfield. We didn't deliver when we needed to on game day, and that's more of the frustration and how we look at it. Each game is its own identity, and we have to step onto the field and put our best out there, and hopefully that allows us to earn a win. If we played a great game and it's a tough battle but we ended up with a loss, you're not OK with that, but at least you feel like you played a strong game. I thought we did a lot of good things, but we just didn't capitalize on and finish a lot of opportunities, which is on us."
Towson can erase the memory of that loss by upending the Pride on Saturday when the program recognizes 11 seniors, including six starters in attackmen Ryan Drenner (Westminster), Joe Seider (Hereford) and Tyler Konen, midfielders Mike Lynch (Boys' Latin) and Tyler Young (Arundel), and goalkeeper Matt Hoy. But the team will have to turn back a trend in which it has lost three times in five games at home this spring.
The last time the Tigers finished a season with a sub-.500 record at Johnny Unitas Stadium was 2011 when that squad went 2-5 in Tony Seaman's final year as head coach. But Nadelen said the team's win-loss record at home is not a pressing concern.
"Regardless of home and away, I don't really take those things into account," he said. "It's more about our preparation and our ability to focus and play at our best. Regardless if you're home or away, you have to step out onto a field and you've got to be ready to go. The fact that we've lost more at home, I don't factor that into an advantage or a disadvantage."