This week, lets recognize some deserving players who don't ordinarily get much recognition. These are good guys who make contributions on and off the field to make their programs better. These unsung seniors bring energy, they understand the culture of their programs and pass it along, and they will be winners in life after lacrosse. They might not appear in the box score, but they make an impact just the same.
Ryan Drenner's value to the No. 12 Tigers (10-2 overall and 2-1 in the Colonial Athletic Association) — who host Fairfield (7-6, 3-0) on Saturday at 12 p.m. at Johnny Unitas Stadium – has been grounded in his ability to put the ball in the net or find teammates who can do that. With 21 goals this spring, the Westminster resident has scored 50 in three years and has assisted on 46 others.
Casey Rees (Boys' Latin) used a fake flip to get his hands free and scored the game-winner 38 seconds into overtime to lead the No. 10 Navy men's lacrosse team to an 11-10 victory over archrival No. 20 Army West Point on Saturday.
Five weeks remain in the college lacrosse regular season and it's time to take stock on who to buy, sell or hold. It's during these five weeks where players and teams step up for the postseason. Are the top players ready to lead? Are the teams that have surprised to this point for real?
The last time Jimmy Joe Granito stood in the cage at Johnny Unitas Stadium turning aside shots from Towson, the goalkeeper was a freshman at Loyola Maryland and had replaced Jack Runkel in the final two minutes of 14-9 loss for the Tigers on Feb. 20, 2013. On Saturday, Granito was back in the net with Drexel.
For three quarters, the Towson men's lacrosse team committed unforced errors, took low-percentage shots and looked befuddled against Drexel's hybrid zone defense. The No. 8 Tigers finally rediscovered their footing in the final period, erupting for six goals and racing past the visiting Dragons, 11-7, in the Colonial Athletic Association opener for both sides before an announced 1,009 at Johnny Unitas Stadium in Towson on Saturday afternoon.
Johns Hopkins enjoys a commanding 39-4 advantage in this series, but Towson won last year¿s meeting by a score of 7-5, snapping a 19-game losing skid. The Tigers are seeking only their third sweep of the Blue Jays, Loyola Maryland and UMBC, but Johns Hopkins has not lost to Towson at home since April 17, 1996 ¿ a span of nine consecutive games.
Maryland's freshmen have been a big part of No. 1 Maryland, the two-time defending national champions, getting off to a 4-0 start. Caroline Steele, Megan Taylor and Jen Giles have earned Big Ten Freshman of the Week in the first four weeks of the award.
No. 6 Towson enters Saturday¿s showdown at 2 p.m. against No. 14 Johns Hopkins at Homewood Field in Baltimore as the higher-ranked team for only the second time in series history. But that news apparently matters little to the Tigers and coach Shawn Nadelen.
As Towson focused on shutting down Northeastern guard David Walker, his teammate Quincy Ford took advantage. Ford scored 15 of his 20 points in the second half, leading the sixth-seeded Huskies to a 71-60 victory over third-seeded Towson on Saturday in front of an announced 3,450 at Royal Farms Arena.
The Towson women's lacrosse team has been in the zone en route to a 4-0 mark, the Tigers' best start since 2010. With a veteran line defense, the Tigers have returned to playing a backer zone and the change has paid off. The Tigers are allowing just 4.75 goals per game. Against the three opponents they also played last year — Monmouth, UMBC and Loyola — they allowed 14 fewer goals.
With the conference basketball tournament scheduled to begin Friday, Tom Yeager spoke about the tournament's three-year run in Baltimore, Towson's presence in the league, and what he expects his emotions to be like when he hands out the championship trophy for the final time.