You spent the better part of four months meticulously dissecting the 2012 college lacrosse season. You shouldn't stop now because cold turkey is a bad way to go through life, man. College Crosse is providing decompression snapshots of all 61 teams and their 2012 campaigns, mostly because everything needs a proper burial.
I. VITAL SIGNS
Team: Hofstra Pride
2012 Record: 6-8 (2-4, THUNDERDOME!)
2012 Strength of Schedule (Efficiency Margin): 1.08 (21)
2011 Strength of Schedule (Efficiency Margin): -0.68 (40)
Winning Percentage Change from 2011: -38.39%
2012 Efficiency Margin: 2.29 (25)
Efficiency Margin Change from 2011: -3.65
II. "ATTA BOY!" FACT
- Andrew Gvozden put together a pretty nice effort in 2012. The now-departed goalie finished the year ranked 17th in individual save percentage with a 55.1 mark. He pulled that mark together, however, seeing just about as many shots per defensive possession as any goalie in the country -- on the year, only two teams yielded more shots per defensive possession than Hofstra. Despite this flurry of activity, Gvozden helped the Pride hold opponents to only a 24.31 raw shooting percentage (a mark that ranked seventh in the country). This wasn't just survival from Gvozden; it was relative success despite difficult circumstances. When all was said and done, Gvozden ended around 36 percent of Hofstra's defensive possessions with a save (a mark that ranks 14th-highest in the nation). Gvozden wasn't in the upper echelon of goalies in 2012 -- nor should he be considered in that group -- but his work in 2012, especially the circumstances under which he was asked to perform, was strong.
III. "YOU'RE GROUNDED UNTIL YOU QUALIFY FOR THE AARP!" FACT
- Had Hofstra beaten Penn State in its season finale the Pride would have been off to the THUNDERDOME! Tournament for a shot at an NCAA berth. The only reason Hofstra was in that situation, though, was that the Pride peed their pants just a month earlier -- at home -- against Towson:
Having thoroughly dominated Towson for the first 48 minutes of play and holding a 9-3 advantage over the Tigers, Hofstra appeared poised to get a huge THUNDERDOME! victory and stop the bleeding that had been seeping from its head wound all season. Then, because Hofstra apparently did horrible things at some point in history and the world is trying to cycle even, Towson freaked out: In a 3:09 stretch, the Tigers pumped in three unanswered tallies; Hofstra attempted to steady the game and work the clock, but Towson went into another unconscious goal-scoring rampage, pumping in another three unanswered scores over the final 4:09 to play (the evening score came with, obviously, just two seconds left in regulation).
The game was tied and I wasn't there, instead talking to a girl who may have had undiagnosed shades of crazy the medical community doesn't even know about.
The story wouldn't be as good if Hofstra had pulled out the win in overtime, and because of all those apparently horrible things that Hofstra has done in the past, the script wouldn't be written that way: The Tigers dominated the first overtime period but got nothing to show for it; then, in the second overtime with Hofstra going man-down on some exceedingly boneheaded play from Mike DeNapoli, Towson finished its journey -- Justin Mabus canned a 10-yard bullet past Hofstra's Andrew Gvozden to give the Tigers an incomprehensible 10-9 victory.
IV. MR. FIX-IT HAS A ONE-FIX ENGAGEMENT, AND IT'S . . .
- Hofstra needs to learn how to win again. Four overtime games -- three of the multiple period variety -- show how close the Pride were from finishing above .500 on the year. Throw in four more games that were decided by two goals or less and the fire that Hofstra was playing with throughout 2012 becomes even more apparent. This is a program that has finished at or around double digit wins since about 2008; Seth Tierney just needs to find the magic again and find ways to win -- or, in some cases, hold on to wins -- when things sour.