Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 11/15/12
From Press Releases
The Lehigh men’s lacrosse team will face rival Penn State and Penn wil meet city rival Villanova on Saturday, Mar. 9 in the Whitman’s® Sampler® Independence Classic, as announced by Inside Lacrosse on Thursday.
The Mountain Hawks and Nittany Lions will face off at 5 p.m. in the third game of a tripleheader at PPL Park in Chester, Pa. Lehigh’s game will follow St. John’s vs. Syracuse at 12 p.m. and Penn vs. Villanova at 2:30 p.m.
The entire Independence Classic will likely be carried by ESPN3 paired with regional broadcast exposure. The final schedule for ESPN networks and all Inside Lacrosse events will be announced in the coming weeks.
The Whitman’s® Sampler® Independence Classic brings the fourth Inside Lacrosse experience scheduled for 2013 to the Philadelphia market. PPL Park, home to MLS’s Philadelphia Union, provides a picturesque setting along the Delaware River and proved to be a fantastic venue for lacrosse as host to the 2012 NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Quarterfinals in May.
The Independence Classic will present a tripleheader of college lacrosse with a distinctive local flavor. Four of the six participating schools hail from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
“We are extremely excited to participate in the inaugural Whitman’s Sampler Independence Classic,” said Penn’s fourth-year head coach, Mike Murphy. “We take great pride in being members of the Philadelphia Lacrosse community and we are ecstatic to be a part of this event. To play a local rival like Villanova in a venue like PPL Park is something our program is really excited about.”
This will mark Penn’s second straight year competing in an Inside Lacrosse event. Last year, the Quakers were part of the inaugural Mile High Classic in Denver, Colo., where they fell to Virginia, 10-8.
“We were fortunate enough to be a part of the Mile High Classic last year, and Inside Lacrosse does a fantastic job of putting on these events and attracting first-rate sponsors like Whitman’s,” said Murphy. “We have a lot of players on our team from the Philadelphia area, and it will be a thrill to play at a first-class facility like PPL in an event of this magnitude. We can’t wait.”
Arguably the signature collegiate programs in the Philadelphia region, Penn and Villanova have played each other every year since 1998 and had some classic games in that time — of the 15 games, eight have been decided by a goal (including each of the last three) and two times they have needed overtime to decide things.
Last year, the Wildcats gained a stunning victory over the Quakers at Franklin Field, overcoming a four-goal deficit to win, 8-7, on a 30-yard shot that hit the netting with one second left. Penn leads the overall series dating back to 1988, 15-8; however, all of Villanova’s victories have come in the last 15 years.
Ticket prices are $45 for Club seats, $35 for Midfield reserved seats, $25 for reserved locations, $20 for groups of 10 or more and $15 for groups of 100 or more. Parking can also be purchased in advance for $15.
Lacrosse fans interested in ticket information for the Independence Classic can call ComcastTix at 800-298-4200. Fans can also visit PhiladelphiaUnion.com or InsideLacrosse.com to get the latest news on the event and details on ordering tickets.
Lehigh and Penn State will meet for a third straight season after winning on the other’s home turf the past two years. A matchup of two nationally-ranked foes, the Mountain Hawks finished 2012 with a school-record 14 wins along with their first-ever Patriot League Championship and NCAA Tournament appearance. Lehigh defeated Penn State last season, 9-5 behind a dominant defensive effort. The Nittany Lions won two seasons ago at the Ulrich Sports Complex, 8-7 in overtime.
Penn State finished last year with a 9-6 record, just missing the NCAA Tournament. Led by head coach Jeff Tambroni, the Nittany Lions picked up a huge win over eventual National Semifinalist Notre Dame. Penn State went 5-1 in CAA play before falling to Drexel in the conference semifinals.
Check back to Lehighsports.com for complete news and notes on the Mountain Hawks leading into a highly-anticipated 2013 campaign.
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Inside Lacrosse Event Sponsors
Joining Whitman’s® Sampler® as partners with Inside Lacrosse to present the Independence Classic and Mile High Classic in 2013 are: Warrior, Brine, Konica Minolta, ESPNU, CyberCore Technologies and Maverik.