Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 12/2/10
From Press Releases
Coming off a Colonial Athletic Association championship and NCAA Tournament appearance in 2010, the University of Delaware men’s lacrosse team landed in several of the nation’s pre-season polls announced recently, including a No. 15 showing in the InsideLacrosse.com Coaches’ Poll.
Delaware, which reached the NCAA tournament for the fifth time under head coach Bob Shillinglaw a year ago, earned the No. 15 spot in the InsideLacrosse.com pre-season poll, as well as No. 18 in the LAXnews Rock-It Pocket pre-season ranking. Delaware also earned mention in the InsideLacrosse.com media poll in the others receiving votes column.
Shillinglaw, the dean of NCAA Division I men’s lacrosse head coaches, will begin his 36th season as a college head coach in 2011, including his 33rd campaign with the Blue Hens. He needs 12 wins this season to join the exclusive career 300-win club.
In the coaches’ poll, the Atlantic Coast Conference dominated the top five spots, putting Virginia at No. 1, North Carolina in third, defending national champion Duke in fourth, and Maryland in fifth. Playing in the inaugural season of the BIG EAST in 2010, Syracuse took the number two slot.
Delaware earned recognition in the media poll where Syracuse held the top spot. Virginia was selected second followed by North Carolina, Cornell, and Duke.
The Hens earned the No. 18 spot in the LAXnews.com poll, which mentions that the close 14-13 loss to No. 4 UNC in the first round of the NCAA Tournament a year ago “proves that Delaware can play with anyone.”
Of the seven teams that comprise the CAA, Delaware was joined by Hofstra, which was selected ninth in the media rankings and 11th in the coaches’ poll, as well as Drexel, which took 19th in the media and 17th in the coaches’ poll. Massachusetts also garnered attention, picking up the No. 19 spot in the coaches’ poll and a No. 15 showing in the media selections. Towson earned the 20th spot in the LAXnews poll while Drexel was selected 22nd in the same poll.
Last season, Delaware earned the CAA automatic qualifying bid, finishing with an overall record of 10-7 and a No. 22 spot in the rankings percentage index (RPI), including a 5-2 mark in the league.
In the first round of the NCAA tournament, the Hens fell in a tough 14-13 battle with ACC power and fourth-ranked North Carolina, which reached the second round of the national tournament.
This upcoming season, Delaware returns all three of its starting defenders in Pat Dowling, Matt Stefurak, and Tim Langmaid, as well as senior netminder Noah Fossner, who averaged 11.0 saves per game, stopping a conference-best 187 shots a year ago. As a unit, Delaware’s defense allowed just 10.0 goals per game while causing 111 turnovers, led by Langmaid’s 17.
Despite losing All-American and Tewaaraton National Player of the Year finalist Curtis Dickson as well as midfielder Martin Cahill, a USILA third-team All-American, Delaware returns plenty of firepower, including junior attackman Grant Kaleikau (16 goals, 25 assists), senior attackman Anthony Ruiz (11 goals), and senior midfielders John Austin (15 goals) and Strath Haven alumnus Kevin Kaminski (10 goals).
In the face-off department, Delaware also returns Dan Cooney, who won 129 of his 236 attempts, ranking sixth in the CAA in faceoff percentage (.547). He also led Delaware in groundballs per game (65), averaging a league third-best 3.82 an outing.
The Blue Hens open their 2011 campaign on Feb. 5 when Detroit Mercy comes to Delaware Stadium for the first game in a five-game home stand, which features Johns Hopkins, which was selected 10th and 11th in the coaches’ and media poll, respectively.
Division I Men’s Polls:
InsideLacrosse.com Coaches’ Poll: 1) Virginia; 2) Syracuse; 3) North Carolina; 4) Duke; 5) Maryland; 6) Princeton; 7) Notre Dame; 8) Stony Brook; 9) Cornell; 10) Johns Hopkins; 11) Hofstra; 12) Loyola (Md.); 13) Georgetown; 14) Denver; 15) Delaware; 16) Army; 17) Drexel; 18) Navy; 19) Massachusetts; 20) Villanova.
InsideLacrosse.com Media Poll: 1) Syracuse; 2) Virginia; 3) North Carolina; 4) Cornell; 5) Duke; 6) Maryland; 7) Notre Dame; 8) Stony Brook; 9) Hofstra; 10) Princeton; 11) Johns Hopkins; 12) Denver; 13) Army; 14) Loyola (Md.); 15) Massachusetts; 16) Yale; 17) Brown; 18) Georgetown; 19) Drexel; 20 Bucknell. Also receiving votes – Delaware.
LAXnews.com Rock-It Pocket 2011 Preseason Rankings: 1) Virginia; 2) North Carolina; 3) Maryland; 4) Syracuse; 5) Princeton; 6) Hofstra; 7) Cornell; 8) Notre Dame; 9) Duke; 10) Stony Brook; 11) Army; 12) Johns Hopkins; 13) Denver; 14) Georgetown; 15) Massachusetts; 16) Harvard; 17) Navy; 18) Delaware; 19) Loyola (Md.); 20) Towson; 21) Yale; 22) Drexel; 23) Villanova; 24) Brown; 25) Bucknell