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Men’s lacrosse: Wildcats face Blue Hens Saturday in Newark, look to remain undefeated

Friday, 2nd March 2012

Categories Boy's/Men's, College, Posted 3/2/12
From Press Releases

No. 8 Villanova (3-0) travels out of state for the first time this season to face Delaware (2-3) on Saturday afternoon. Game time is schedule for Noon at Delaware Stadium.

Saturday marks the 11th overall meeting between the two schools with the all-time series favoring the Wildcats, 7-4. Villanova claimed the 2011 outing on April 9th, 2011 in a 10-4 win at Villanova Stadium last season. Delaware was last victorious against the Wildcats in 2008 when the Blue Hens posted an 8-4 victory in Newark, Del.

Villanova This Season: The Wildcats enter Saturday’s contest with a perfect 3-0 record after defeating Drexel 14-9 earlier this week. Villanova got off to a 6-0 lead in the first quarter and never looked back as eight different Wildcats posted points for the night. Junior Will Casertano (Millbrook, N.Y.) led the team with two goals and three assists while senior Dan Gutierrez made 11 saves. With the win, Villanova improves to 19-3 (.863) at home in Villanova Stadium since 2009.

As of the latest USILA Coaches and Nike/Inside Lacrosse Media Polls released on Monday, Feb. 27th, Villanova will face seven ranked opponents this season: No. 3 Syracuse, No. 5 Maryland, No. 9 Notre Dame, No. 12 Princeton, No. 13 Penn State, No. 18 Drexel and No. 19 Penn

‘Nova Offense: The Villanova junior and senior classes have combined to produce 84% of offensive production through three games. The Wildcats average 14.67 goals per game compared to just 9.33 from the competition, including a .713 shot on goal percentage over their competitors .641.

Senior Kevin Cunningham (Garden City, N.Y.) leads the Villanova attack with 13 points via eight goals and five assists while classmate C.J. Small (San Diego, Calif.) follows closely behind with nine points through four goals and eight assists. Junior Jack Rice (Baltimore, Md.) leads the team with 10 goals after posting a career-high six scores versus Bucknell.

‘Nova Defense: Senior Dan Gutierrez (Chevy Chase, Md.) had another stellar day in net against Drexel, making 11 saves and facing 35 shots. For the season, the netminder posts a 9.30 goals against average a and .576 save percentage.

The starting trio at close defense, seniors Chris Creighton (Malvern Prep), Ryan McDonagh (Huntington, N.Y.) and sophomore Chris Conroy (Chatham, N.J.) have combined for 15 ground balls and 12 caused turnovers while sophomore LSM John LoCascio (Farifield, N.J.) has grabbed 12 ground balls and caused four turnovers for the year.

A Look at Delaware: Delaware brings a 2-3 record into Saturday’s showdown against the Wildcats. The Blue Hens are coming off a 12-10 loss at home against Mount St. Mary’s, marking their third straight defeat of the season. Delaware previously fell at No. 3 Johns Hopkins, 8-6, and at Loyola, 13-8. The Blue Hens started off the year with victories over Detroit Mercy and Bucknell.

Blue Hen Offense: Delaware averages 10.80 goals per game on offense and surrenders 9.67 goals per game defensively. Grant Kaleikau leads the team with 24 points (9g, 15a) while Danny Keane (10g, 2a) and Sean Finegan (9g) follow closely behind.

Blue Hen Defense:
Defensively, redshirt freshman goalkeeper Chris Herbert posts a 9.67 goals against average and a .525 save percentage after facing 166 shots. His defensemen, Connor Fitzgerald, Jarred Bowe and Tim Langmaid have combined for 23 ground balls and 16 caused turnovers.

The Last Meeting (4/9/11): No. 11 Villanova scored eight unanswered goals en route to a 10-4 victory over former CAA-rival No. 17 Delaware on Saturday evening at Villanova Stadium. Jack Rice led all scorers with three goals and one assist while Brian Karalunas had another stellar showing posting eight ground balls and six caused turnovers for the night. The Wildcats held Delaware scoreless for 42:36 – the longest scoring drought Villanova has held opponents to this season.



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