River Hawks Head to Boston University For First Road Tilt

Saturday, February 25 at Boston University (1 p.m.)
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Twitter: @RiverHawkWLAX @RiverHawkNation 

LOWELL, Mass. – The UMass Lowell women’s lacrosse team will head to Boston for its first road tilt of the season on Saturday, February 25, for a 1 p.m. matinee at Boston University.

River Hawk Rewind
UMass Lowell (0-1) was recently clipped by Dartmouth (1-0), 11-9, last weekend in the squads’ season opener at Wicked Blue Field. Attacker Jane Dudley (Duxbury, Mass.) and midfielder Kendyl Finelli (Southborough, Mass.) paced the offense with three points apiece, while the team collectively tied a program-high six assists in the outing.

Leading The Flock
Offensively, Jane Dudley and Kendyl Finelli are leading the team with three points apiece. Dudley is posting a team-best three goals from the front line, while Finelli is dishing out a team-high three assists thus fur. So far this season, UMass Lowell has recorded eight different point scorers, five of which have found the back of the net at least once this year. Goalkeeper Courtney Barrett (South Burlington, Vt.) is first on the team with four groundballs, while defenseman Megan Albertsen (Rockville Centre, N.Y.) is leading the way with two caused turnovers. Between the pipes, Barrett has denied 11 shots, while boasting a .500 goals against average.

Scouting Boston University
The Terriers are currently 0-1 after falling to No. 13/17 Boston College, 13-11, on Feb. 15. Elisabeth Jayne and Avery Donahoe are tallying three goals apiece, while Jayne’s five points are leading the team. Jayne is also scooping up a team-best two groundballs, while Donahoe sits second in both points (4) and draw controls (2). In net, Caroline Meegan has stopped 17 shots, while posting a .567 goals against average.

Sharing is Caring
On Saturday, Feb. 18, the River Hawks notched assists on six of the team’s nine goals against Dartmouth. The six helpers tied a program record for UMass Lowell, which was matched twice last season.

Series History
Saturday’s match marks the first meeting between the two squads in the sport of women’s lacrosse.

River Hawks Second Half Comeback Spoiled, 11-9 By Dartmouth

LOWELL, Mass. – Although the UMass Lowell women’s lacrosse team (0-1) erased a five-goal, second half deficit, the team’s comeback was spoiled, as Dartmouth (1-0) earned an 11-9 victory in the River Hawks season opener.

After trailing 8-3 for 32 minutes of play, UMass Lowell tallied four consecutive goals to cut the score to 8-7 with 20:44 left in the contest. After a Dartmouth goal and back-to-back goals by sophomores Jane Dudley (Duxbury, Mass.) and Kristina Keith (East Kingston, N.H.), the River Hawks were able to knot the score, 9-9, with 12 minutes to play. With time winding down, the Big Green’s Courtney Weisse, who notched a game-high five goals, and Elizabeth Mastrio netted two late pivotal scores to help secure the 11-9 outcome.

“I am very pleased with today,” said Head Coach Carissa Medeiros. “This is a great season opener for us, and the best season opener we have had as a program. We opened up against Dartmouth last year, at Dartmouth, and that had a significantly different turnout. We focused on everything we said we were going to. We had goals of maintaining high energy and controlling the controllable and we did that. Also we managed the ball on offensive better than we ever had.”

Offensively, the River Hawks were led by Dudley and sophomore Kendyl Finelli (Southborough, Mass.) who posted a career high three goals and four assists, respectively. UMass Lowell matched a program best six assists in the contest, while seven players recorded points on the day.

The two teams traded goals early, as the scored was knotted 2-2 at 21:23 in the first. Dudley broke open the scoring for the season, tacking on the squads first goal just three minutes into the game.

After Dartmouth tied the score, 2-2, the visitors strung together a six-goal run, giving the Big Green their largest advantage of the game, 7-2. With nearly four seconds remaining in the first, sophomore Rebeca Idson (East Atlantic Beach, N.Y.) was able to get one back for the River Hawks as they trailed by four, 7-3, entering halftime.

UMass Lowell took control early in the second half, scoring four consecutive goals in the first ten minutes. Junior Taylor Sokol (Hopkinton, Mass) chipped in with two goals, before Dudley and Keith added a goal apiece, bringing their team within one, 8-7, with 20 minutes to play.

Dartmouth attempted to pull away, firing a free position goal past junior Courtney Barrett (South Burlington, Vt.) for a 9-7 differential, but failed to maintain its lead as the River Hawks evened the score once more with a pair of timely goals. Dudley and Keith provided their third and second goals, respectively, of the tilt to deadlock the contest, 9-9, with just over 10 minutes on the clock.

Down the stretch, UMass Lowell fought hard but the Big Green found a way to lace two more markers as they grinded out the 11-9 victory.

Barrett rejected 11 shots in the outing, while her counterparts combined for 10 saves in the bout.

UMass Lowell is back in action on Saturday, February 4 for a 1 p.m. matinee at instate foe Boston University.

River Hawks Look To Accomplish New Goals In 2017

The UMass Lowell women’s lacrosse team has its sights set on new goals, as the third year program looks to make its biggest leap entering 2017. Head Coach Carissa Medeiros is excited to see her squad build on a positive and productive fall campaign, as the River Hawks open the new season on Saturday, February 18 at Wicked Blue Field.

“All kinds of great things have happened in the offseason. We have two new coaches who are really helping us elevate the program by bringing a ton of legit Division I experience and I think our girls are taking to it really nicely,” said Medeiros. “Our effort is the best its ever been, our energy is the best its ever been and our skill level is sharpening up faster than I expected it to. We have a solid core group of kids that are really getting it and consistently practicing at a high level and high intensity while having a lot more fun.”

When it comes to team and season goals in year three, the squad is shifting its focus to the process rather than the outcome, keeping high levels of energy and effort and playing a complete 60 minute game.

“Last year we were too focused on the wins and losses and what could have been rather than the little steps it takes to win,” explained Medeiros. “Whether or not we complete our goals is how we will be able to measure our success.”

This season, senior Kristy Robertson, juniors Courtney Barrett and Shelia Nolan, and sophomore Jane Dudley have been named team captains. Alongside the foursome, Medeiros is also seeking leadership from her 10 upperclassmen, all who played in the inaugural season for the River Hawks.

“This is the first year we have had an entire class worth of upperclassmen and they are doing a great job of taking the leadership component seriously,” said Medeiros. “That is something we have lacked in the past, not because we didn’t have leaders, but because we haven’t had a class with years behind them. This year we have kids with leadership skills along with the actual number of years experience.”

The team welcomes eight newcomers for the upcoming campaign to round out the 29-person roster. Though the program is welcoming a large young class, Coach Medeiros’ returners have led by example.

“We’ve got a good core group of kids who are really showing what it takes to be competitive on the field every single day, and that has gotten us to the point where we are now quicker than we have in years past.”

With this season seeing its first full class of upperclassmen, Coach Medeiros feels the chemistry on and off the field her first recruiting class has built will provide an edge for the underdogs.

“I am really excited about having a solid junior class where some players have been starting and playing for three years solid,” remarked Medeiros. “That is a little different than what you will see at some other established programs where you have juniors who are just getting their opportunity to start for the first time. I think having a group of girls who have played a lot of minutes for a long time will pay off for us over the course of the season.”

UMass Lowell is returning 21 letterwinners, and the majority of their 2016 starters, including junior goalkeeper Courtney Barrett, who was ranked first in the nation in ground balls (76) and ground balls per game with (4.47), and fourth in saves per game (10.41). Her 177 saves this year ranks first in the conference, while her .452 save percentage was fifth among America East goalkeepers. Barrett led the River Hawks in ground balls and caused turnovers (15), in addition to setting a program record of 17 saves against UMBC on April 2.

Junior Taylor Sokol (Hopkington, Mass.) had a major hand in the River Hawks scoring, as the attack notched team highs in points and assists with 23 and eight, respectively. Sokol tied a program record last season when she posted five points (3g, 2a) in a single contest, while being one of six players to start in all 17 games.

Sophomore midfielder Kristina Keith (Exeter, N.H.) will look to contribute to the scoring again in 2017, after her six free position goals were tied for a team best with junior attack Kaylan DiModugno (Deer Park, N.Y.). The duo tallied 15 and 10 points respectively, while Keith’s 18 draw controls were a third best for the squad.

This spring’s slate, which features 17 contests, will once again be ranked among the toughest schedules of all young programs. The River Hawks are set to square off against 2016 NCAA Tournament team Stony Brook on April 29, in addition to 2015 tournament participants Bryant (3.29) and UAlbany (4.8).

“We are always trying to get as competitive of a schedule as we can. I am a firm believer in not being able to grow unless you play the best of the best, but we also recognize the importance of having games that are closer to our competition level,” said Medeiros.

Medeiros has arranged for her squad to battle against a handful of new opponents this spring, as the unit is slated to face challengers from four different leagues during the non-conference portion of 2017.

“Overall we have a good mix of really competitive Top 30 and Top 40 programs, some perennial teams that are fighting for NCAA spots, while playing some teams that are equal to the trajectory that we are on,” she concluded.

UMass Lowell will host eight games in front of River Hawk Nation, including a three-game home stand, featuring Quinnipiac (3.22), LIU Brooklyn and Bryant.

5 Reasons Why Lacrosse is the Fastest Growing Sport in America

“It’s a virus in a good way. Once you pick up a stick, you’re with it for life.” – David Gross, Commissioner of Major League Lacrosse

 

Lacrosse is at the top of the list of fastest growing sports in America, but why? As one of the oldest sports in the country, why now has it started to expand so rapidly?

 

5 Reasons Why Lacrosse is the Fastest Growing Sport in America:

 

1. Four-Year Colleges are Starting to Catch On

A more literal #throwbackthursday this week. #TBT

A video posted by Syracuse Men's Lacrosse (@cusemlax) on

Over 70 four-year colleges started varsity lacrosse teams within the last 2 years, and 50 more are slated to start by the 2019 season.

 

2. The Feeder System is Growing

State Semi Final Game Day. #LeaveNoDoubt

A photo posted by Clayton HS Lacrosse (@clayton_lax) on

Lacrosse has been the fastest growing sport at the High School level for over a decade, but the fast five years have been huge. No other High School sport topped the 10% mark for growth in the past five years.

 

3. Anyone, Anywhere, Anytime

#WallBallWednesday with @willmanny1 at Zion National Park 🏔 #TLNnation

A video posted by The Lacrosse Network (@lacrossenetwork) on

“It’s fun to practice, just have a catch, to throw against a wall by yourself. Any body size can play. You don’t have to be 7-feet tall to play the game, we’ll find a place for you on the field. It’s perfect.” – David Gross, Commissioner of MLL

 

4. Moving West

Trophy on the line today at #PeterBartonLS #DENvMARQ set for 2:30p on Fox Sports 2 in the BIG EAST Final

A photo posted by Official Denver Mens Lacrosse (@denvermlax) on

While traditionally the sport has been popular in the northeast, the rest of the country is seeing large spikes in growth. Denver was the first Men’s Division I Lacrosse team not within the Eastern timezone, and since then many other schools in the midwest and west coast have installed varsity programs.

 

5. Growing Professionally 

Don't wish for it, work for it #motivationmonday

A photo posted by Major League Lacrosse (@majorleaguelax) on

Although the professional level is growing much less rapidly than the lower levels of lacrosse, the MLL has plans to expand to 16 teams within the next 10 years.

 

Source: http://www.boston.com/sponsored/2016/04/12/lax-attack-lacrosse-continues-explode-across-sports-landscape/QEN7fY443eumKIbUfp2FpO/story.html

Young Harris College Lacrosse Program Founder Kirk Rogers Steps Down

Young Harris College is an up and coming Division II program with a lot of potential. The Director of Athletics at Young Harris released a statement today in regards to the sudden departure of the men’s lacrosse coach Kirk Rogers:

“Over the past five years, Coach Rogers has served as the head men’s lacrosse coach and compiled an overall record of 30-29. I truly appreciate his commitment to building a strong men’s lacrosse program at YHC, his tireless work ethic, and putting YHC on the map for men’s lacrosse. I wish Kirk only the best as he has decided to embark on new career opportunities and spend more time with his family at this time in his life.”

Rogers introduced the lacrosse program to Young Harris College in 2012, and has served as the men’s lacrosse coach since its induction. Over the past four seasons the Mountain Lions saw a rise each year in total wins, from just 5 in their inaugural year to 10 this past season.

Rogers released his own statement saying, “I am excited to start a new chapter in my life and spend more time with my family and my fiancée,” said Rogers. “I will continue to follow the Young Harris lacrosse program from afar. I know what they are capable of and I expect great things.”

For now, assistant coach Forrest MacConnell will serve as interim head coach of the men’s lacrosse program.

Hampton Pirates Find Gold in 1st Recruiting Class

When someone mentions Hampton University and sports never has lacrosse been a topic of conversation. Historically, Hampton has always been a basketball power house.However, that all might change soon for coach Lloyd Carter and his Pirates after taking a look at their first official recruiting class.

After looking through a few of the highlight tapes one word comes to mind when describing all of these players…ATHLETE. Not only can these guys  run like the wind, throw kids down to the floor, and switch directions before you see it coming. They also have a knack for putting the ball in the net with STYLE.

Right off the bat the Pirates grabbed two D1 transfers from St.John’s, Malcolm Flynn and Andrew Gray. They also snagged a JuCo transfer from ASA College, Kier Johnson, who has one of the most legit commitment videos I’ve ever seen.

The Pirates have also recruited two phenomenal goalies, Josh Tarver (Centerville HS,) and Kevin Mondy Jr. (Hillcrest HS), both with lightning quick hands.

As well as attackmen John Tarver (Centerville HS) and Preston Randolph (Episcopal HS, Va) who can virtually score from anywhere.

 

 

Bernhardt Named Princeton Defensive Coordinator

Jesse Bernhardt has been a Major League Lacrosse champion, a World Championships runner-up and a coach and player at the NCAA Final Four. He now brings that winning experience to the Princeton men’s lacrosse coaching staff.

Bernhardt, who most recently has helped the Rutgers program back into the national spotlight while coaching defense and face-offs, will become the Princeton defensive coordinator under head coach Matt Madalon.

“I’m really excited for the opportunity to part of Princeton lacrosse, ” Bernhardt said. “I want to thank Matt and Mollie [Ford Family Director of Athletics Mollie Marcoux] for the opportunity to be at an instituation such as this one. I’m looking forward to getting started and meeting the guys and helping to bring stability to the program.”

Continue reading…

Three College Coaches Earn IWLCA Honors

The IWLCA named North Carolina’s Jenny Levy, Florida Southern’s Kara Reber and Middlebury’s Kate Livesay its National Coaches of the Year on Monday. Levy (Division I), Reber (Division II) and Livesay (Division III) each earn the distinction after leading their teams to national championships in May.

For Levy, it was the second national title in four years, winning the championship game over undefeated Maryland to do so. North Carolina finished the season at 20-2, records for most wins and fewest losses in a season in school history. Levy’s team won 17 consecutive games to end the season, culminating in the 13-7 victory over Maryland.

Reber earned her honor by leading Florida Southern to its first Division II national championship after just five years in existence. The Mocs beat out two-time defending champion Adelphi 8-7 in the national title game to become the first team form south of the Mason Dixon Line to win a Division II championships. Florida Southern finished the season at 19-3.

Livesay led Middlebury to the Division III national championship in her first year as head coach of the program. It was Middlebury’s first title since 2004, after a season in which Livesay helped her team to a school record 22 wins. She won the championships game over her former program, Trinity, making it the first time a women’s lacrosse coach of any Division has won national championships with two different schools.

Team USA’s Michelle Tumolo Joins Oregon as Assistant

The new Oregon lacrosse coaching staff gained more elite credentials Tuesday with the addition of assistant coach Michelle Tumolo.

UO head coach Katrina Dowd, a five-time NCAA champion as a player and coach, named Tumolo to one of her two assistant positions. Tumolo played in the Final Four three times in four years as a player at Syracuse from 2010-13, then spent two seasons as an assistant at Florida before returning to the Orange as an assistant this past spring.

Tumolo will help coordinate offense for the Ducks, as she did with both the Gators and Orange. Florida led the NCAA in scoring in 2015 with 15.52 goals per game, and Syracuse scored 314 goals in 2016, second-most in the nation.

“We’re excited to welcome Michelle to the Oregon lacrosse family,” Dowd said. “She brings a wealth of knowledge and passion for the game that is unmatched. Her competitive drive as a player, and now as a top young coach, will be a perfect fit in helping take Oregon lacrosse to the next level.”

Continue reading…

Top 5 FIL Prospects

If someone were to put all of the names of the players at the FIL and picked out 20 names at random no doubt they would have put together an all-star team, there was that much talent! Headlines were made and a few players stole the show which is why I’ve listed the Top 5 UNCOMMITTED prospects from last weeks tournament.

In no particular order the top 5 are:

Jake Bernhardt, USA

High School: Lake Brantley, Fla.

Committed to: Marylandimgres-1

Does it seem like Jared plays with the IQ of Jake Bernhardt and the athleticism of Jesse Bernhardt? It should, because he is their younger brother. Last week Jared posted 15 points for Team USA and set up the game winning goal against Canada. He was also named the FIL U-19 Tournament MVP, Best Midfielder, and  FIL All-Tournament Team. Some say that he’ll see immediate playing time at Maryland.

Tehoka Nanticoke, Iroquois

High School: IMG Academy, Fla.

Committed to: Albany

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If you haven’t heard of Tehoka yet get with the times. 75% of the highlights that came from this tournament were of this guy. A native to the Onondaga reservation, Tehoka packed his bags and moved down south to play for IMG where he’s TOYING with kids. He was named FIL U-19 Best Attackman and FIL All Tournament Team. He’ll try to become the next Lyle Thompson (or better) at Albany in 2017.

Michael Sowers, USA

High School: Upper Dublin, PA.

Committed to: Princeton

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Sowers was predicted to have an explosive tournament, and with 22 points (11 goals, 11 assists) he did just that. He teammate Alex Roesner with the most points for Team USA and he scored 1 goal and added 2 assists to beat Canada in the title game. He was named to the FIL All Tournament Team. Sowers is also believed to currently hold the record for most assists in the history of high school lacrosse.

Kyle Hebert, Canada

High School: St. Michael’s College School, Ont.

Committed to: Stony Brook

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Hebert came up huge several times to help Canada advance to the title game. He has a special talent for positioning his body and he can throw DIMES. Against Team USA Hebert held his own while recording 11 saves against some of the top attackmen in the world. He was named U-19 Best Goalie and FIL All-Tournament Team. Good luck to anyone who tries to sneak one past Hebert while he’s a Seawolf.

Jeff Teat, Canada

High School: The Hill Academy, Ont.

Committed to: Cornell

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After the year Jeff Teat has had I would expect him to be on the front of a Wheaties box soon. After scoring 28 points (15 goals, 13 assists) you would’ve thought Teat was worthy of some kind of accolade, but he was still the go to guy for Canada. Every play, even the small ones, started with Teat. He’ll look to redeem himself in a couple months at Cornell.