March 17, 2014
Tuesday, March 18 -- vs. No. 1 Maryland (Michigan Stadium), 4 p.m.
Saturday, March 22 -- vs. Saint Joseph's (Michigan Stadium), 3 p.m.
The University of Michigan men's lacrosse team (4-4, 1-0) is coming off the program's first-ever ECAC win by an 11-10 (OT) count against Bellarmine on Saturday (March 15). This week, U-M will host future Big Ten opponent in No. 1 Maryland on Tuesday (March 18) at 4 p.m. and the Saint Joseph's Hawks Saturday (March 22) at 3 p.m. Both games will be played at Michigan Stadium.
The Terrapins enter Tuesday's contest with a perfect 6-0 record overall and 2-0 mark in what is their final season in the Atlantic Coast Conference. They will join the Big Ten for the 2015 season. Most recently, Maryland downed Villanova, 12-10, on Saturday in College Park. The Terps boast marquee wins over Syracuse (16-8) and Duke (10-6).
Offensively, the Terps are led by attackman Mike Channenchuk (19g. 6a.) with 25 points, while freshman Matt Rambo is second on the team with 17 points (13g., 4a.). Maryland has outscored opponents, 79-38, on the season and outshot teams, 275-178.
Charlie Raffa is the man at the dot, winning 60 percent of his faceoffs to go along with 47 ground balls. Mike Ehrhardt is the top LSM, as he has 25 ground balls and 14 caused turnovers.
Maryland boasts one of the top goalkeepers in the country in Niko Amato, who is allowing only 6.71 goals per game. He stops 61 percent of shots faced to go along with 59 saves.
First Time vs. No. 1
The matchup against the No. 1 Terps will mark the first time U-M has taken on the top-ranked team in the country. Previously, the highest-ranked team U-M has played was No. 4 Johns Hopkins on Feb. 23, 2013.
Freshman Ian King leads U-M in goals with 17 and in shots with 53, while sophomore midfielder Kyle Jackson is No. 2 on the team in goals with 12 and boasts seven assists (15 points). He is also second on the squad in shots with 40. Graduate-student Thomas Paras leads the squad in assists with seven, and is third in goals with eight.
Michigan is being outscored this season, 99-89, but is outshooting opponents, 323-317.
After going 21-of-24 at the dot against Bellarmine, Brad Lott is up to 62 percent and has 52 ground pickups, which is a Michigan single-season record. LSM Chase Brown has 17 ground balls and has also caused 11 turnovers.
Robbie Zonino has stopped 45 percent of shots faced this season, and has allowed. 11.98 goals per contest. In his last three games, he has stopped 29 shots.
Michigan has also improved drastically in the clearing game this season, as the team has only four failed clears in the last three contests. For the season, U-M is clearing at 91 percent, while the man-up unit is converting at 45 percent (14-of-31).
Brad Lott was been named the ECAC Specialist of the Week on Monday (March 17) for compiling a school-record 15 ground balls while going 21-of-24 at the faceoff dot in an 11-10 overtime win over league foe Bellarmine.
National, ECAC Ranks
Overall, U-M is ranked as the No. 19 offense in the country and No. 2 in the ECAC, averaging 11.14 goals per contest. Additionally, U-M in No. 1 in the ECAC in ground balls per game with 31.43 per contest (19th nationally) and is clearing at 90 percent, which is 14th in the nation.
Breakthroughs against Cornell
The one-goal loss against No. 15 Cornell marked the closest defeat U-M has suffered against a ranked opponent in program history. Previously, the closest defeat suffered was five goals against No. 15 Penn State on Feb. 9, 2013 (11-6 defeat). Michigan also held a lead against a ranked opponent for the first time since leading 2-1 against No. 4 Denver at the 2:12 mark of the first quarter on April 27, 2013.
Strength of Schedule, Strength
Michigan has played the No. 38 schedule in the country thus far, featuring three ranked opponents in No. 9 Penn State, No. 5 Johns Hopkins and No. 16 Cornell.
Mike DeWitt, who has called U-M games the past two seasons on Big Ten Student U and the Michigan Stadium in-house feed on MGoBlue.com, will return for his third season as the voice of Michigan lacrosse as the play-by-play man. Joining him as color commentator will be 2012 U-M graduate Brian Greiner, a member of Team One and U-M's primary faceoff man in the initial season as a varsity program. He was also a member of the teams 2010 MCLA national championship squad.
In the 2012 season, Greiner won the Team Spirit Award and went 128-of-302 at the faceoff X (42 percent). He led the team in ground balls, with 48, and scored four goals on the year, including two against Ohio State in the first Battle at the Big House.
Nine players made their debuts for the Wolverines against Penn State in Josh Stauffer and Mike D'Alessio (sophomores) as well as freshmen Mikie Schlosser, Ian King, Peter Khoury, Will Biagi, Stefan Bergman and Christian Wolter and goalie Robbie Zonino. Against Mercer, Andrew Roswell, Charlie McPeters, Cooper Charlton and Brendan Gaughan made their debuts. Most recently, Andrew Hatton make his first appearance -- against Detroit -- at close defense and earned his first start of the season against Johns Hopkins, upping the total of initial appearances to 15 thus far this season.
In total, U-M's 2014 opponents had a combined record of 117-96 a year ago. For the team's eight road games, the Wolverines will travel 4,092 miles
Diversity for U-M
Of the players that make up the 2014 squad, members of the team hail from 13 states and provinces, highlighted by eight from Michigan and five from New Jersey, Ohio, California, Connecticut and Pennsylvania.
California: 5 (Gaughan, Hernandez, Johnson, Schlosser, Simor)
Canada: 1 (Jackson)
Colorado: 1 (Wylie)
Connecticut: 5 (Francia, Hatton, Keady, Khoury, Kraus)
Florida: 1 (Stauffer)
Maryland: 4 (Brown, Glaser, Mosko, Roswell)
Michigan: 8 (Archer, Gembis, Kennedy, Meter, Orr, Sardelli, Walker, Zwolan)
New Hampshire: 1 (Wolter)
New Jersey: 5 (Bryant, McPeters, Portnoy, Riefberg, Weichert)
New York: 2 (D'Alessio, Logan)
Ohio: 5 (Charlton, Joseph, King, McCormack, Paras)
Pennsylvania: 5 (Bergman, Chu, Kinek, Moore, Zonino)
Virginia: 1 (Biagi)
Special Matchups on Tap
For the third straight season, U-M will host the Battle at the Big House following the U-M Football Spring Game. This year's opponent for the traditional matchup will be the Fairfield Stags, and the April 5 game will commence at 3 p.m. The following Saturday (April 12), U-M will take part in the Showdown at the Shoe against Ohio State at 11 a.m. in Columbus.
Freshman Nothing New
For the third straight season, the Wolverines will run a freshman goalie out between the pipes, as Robbie Zonino appears to be the man in the cage this season. In 2012 Emil Weiss was the primary goalie, playing in 10 games with an 11.80 goals-against average. In 2013, Gerald Logan played the majority of minutes.
In the two years U-M has been a varsity program, freshman have played 84 percent of the minutes in goal. The departed Dylan Westerhold is the other netminder who saw action in both seasons, playing 252 minutes in 2012, and just over five minutes in 2013. Cy Abelnour made a cameo appearance in 2012, playing 10 minutes as well.
U-M is the only team in the country that will have started a different freshman goalie in each of the past seasons. The Albany Great Danes are the last team to accomplish that feat, as a freshman was in net for the 2011-12-13 seasons.
U-M Supports Friends of Jaclyn, vs. Cancer
The Wolverines adopted nine-year-old Miles Root of Tecumseh, Mich., through the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation (FOJ), a charitable, non-profit organization that strives to enhance and strengthen the support system built around children with pediatric brain tumors. Through the program, adopted children become part of the team and build unique friendships. Children also gain an incredible group of caring role models to look up to when they need the extra support. FOJ places children with teams according to geographical proximity, as his primary healthcare facility is the University of Michigan Hospital.
Miles was diagnosed with a brain tumor on April 26, 2010, at the age of five. The tumor was fully resected on April 28, but he suffered from posterior fossa syndrome with cerebellar mutism a few hours after his tumor removal, resulting in him being unable to move the right side of his body and leaving him unable to speak.
FOJ's programs are based on love, support and friendship between the child, the child's family and his or her "adopted" team. FOJ has completed more than 400 adoptions in more than 20 different sports. They currently have more than 1,000 schools on a waiting list, as FOJ grows from a small organization into a larger one.
On Jan. 25, over 30 members of the team shaved their heads in support of Miles, as well as Chase Jones, a leading member in the vs. Cancer Organization based out of North Carolina.
Saturday, March 29 -- at Air Force (Colorado Springs, Colo.), 1 p.m. MT