MAAC Lacrosse Tournament Preview: Siena-Jacksonville

Get your face ready for Saints-Dolphins.

Every Division I tournament. Every team. College Crosse has it all on lockdown. Please send cookies and naptime. Today we're slashing to bits the MAAC Tournament.

I may be wrong about this, but I believe that this is the first conference tournament game this year that the computing machine believes that the lower seeded team has the strongest chance of victory. Of course, the Log5 shows this as a functional push, but that doesn't matter -- Siena has already won according to the robot lacrosse prognosticator. Congratulations, Saints!

THE COMPUTING MACHINE SAYS

Log5: Siena (52.82%); Jacksonville (47.18%)

DOSSIERS

MAAC Tournament: Siena (3) vs. Jacksonville (2)
SIENA SAINTS JACKSONVILLE DOLPHINS
OPPORTUNITIES/TEMPO
Pace 72.11 (6) 66.01 (33)
Opportunities Margin +2.06 (16) -0.50 (35)
Possession Ratio 51.43% (17) 49.62% (35)
Functional Offensive Opportunities per 60 Minutes 33.56 (8) 30.52 (35)
Functional Offensive Opportunities Ratio 90.50% (49) 93.16% (20)
Functional Defensive Opportunities per 60 Minutes 32.17 (46) 31.51 (42)
Functional Defensive Opportunities Ratio 90.50% (49) 94.76% (57)
Lost Functional Offensive Opportunities per 60 Minutes 12.83 (45) 12.27 (31)
Lost Functional Offensive Opportunities Ratio 38.22% (18) 40.22% (28)
Lost Functional Defensive Opportunities per 60 Minutes 10.90 (55) 15.18 (3)
Lost Functional Defensive Opportunities Ratio 33.88% (60) 48.16% (5)
Lost Functional Opportunities Margin -1.93 (52) +2.90 (4)
Lost Functional Opportunities Margin Ratio -4.33% (46) +7.94% (8)
ADJUSTED EFFICIENCIES
Adjusted Offensive Efficiency 29.36 (38) 28.08 (46)
Adjusted Defensive Efficiency 32.90 (45) 32.64 (41)
Adjusted Efficiency Margin -3.54 (39) -4.56 (44)
SHOOTING
Shots per Offensive Opportunity 0.99 (54) 1.09 (34)
Raw Offensive Shooting Rate 30.81% (16) 27.78% (30)
Shots per Defensive Opportunity 1.18 (49) 1.09 (29)
Raw Defensive Shooting Rate 27.45% (26) 27.79% (28)
ASSISTS
Offensive Assist Ratio 56.73% (34) 59.17% (20)
Offensive Assist Rate 17.38 (32) 17.97 (27)
Defensive Assist Ratio 47.37% (3) 59.02% (44)
Defensive Assist Rate 15.37 (20) 17.96 (41)
EXTRA-MAN RATES
Extra-Man Postures per 100 Offensive Opportunities 8.06 (59) 10.89 (27)
Extra-Man Posture Reliance 11.11% (38) 11.67% (31)
Extra-Man Posture Conversion Rate 42.22% (8) 32.56% (41)
Man-Down Postures per 100 Defensive Opportunities 10.06 (26) 12.47 (51)
Man-Down Posture Reliance 11.70% (35) 14.75% (49)
Man-Down Posture Conversion Rate 37.74% (44) 36.00% (39)
MISCELLANEOUS
Penalties per 100 Opportunities (Team) 5.16 (22) 6.41 (46)
Penalties per 100 Opportunities (Opponent) 4.24 (60) 5.78 (30)
Caused Turnovers per 100 Defensive Opportunities (Team) 17.84 (57) 26.93 (12)
Caused Turnovers per 100 Defensive Opportunities (Opponent) 21.33 (27) 19.49 (13)
Turnovers per 100 Offensive Opportunities (Team) 44.09 (24) 44.30 (26)
Turnovers per 100 Offensive Opportunities (Opponent) 39.28 (57) 50.87 (10)
Unforced Turnovers per 100 Offensive Opportunities (Team) 22.76 (27) 24.81 (46)
Unforced Turnovers per 100 Offensive Opportunities (Opponent) 21.44 (45) 23.94 (25)
Team "Run-of-Play Work Rate" (Non-Faceoff Groundballs per 100 Total Opportunities) 25.16 (48) 31.66 (12)
Opponent "Run-of-Play Work Rate" (Non-Faceoff Groundballs per 100 Total Opportunities) 29.22 (42) 27.51 (32)
"Run-of-Play Work Rate" Margin -4.06 (54) +4.15 (9)
GOALIE ACTIVITY
Saves per 100 Defensive Opportunities 37.19 (20) 35.16 (25)
Saves per 100 Offensive Opportunities 27.60 (1) 41.27 (61)
Team Save Percentage 53.41% (25) 53.61% (23)
Opponent Save Percentage 47.38% (9) 57.60% (54)

THOUGHTS AND STUFF

Two pieces of incredibly important information about each team from my brain to your eyes via your Internet computing machine:

  • There are probably two important points of focus for Siena today: (1) Whether the Saints will clear the ball at a strong percentage (Siena is only getting the ball out of their own end at a rate that ranks 53rd nationally); and (2) Whether Siena will shoot the ball with accuracy. Both of these areas of focus concern a major issue that the Saints will need to deal with: Jacksonville's Peter DeLuca, one of the most active and reliable goalkeepers in the country. DeLuca is the centerpiece to the Dolphins' defense, ranking 11th nationally in individual save percentage (57.0) and ending somewhere north of 35 percent of Jacksonville's defensive opportunities with a stop (all while seeing around a shot per defensive opportunity). DeLuca quietly exists as one of Division I's stronger netminders, tucked away in the MAAC with few spotlights cast in his direction. For Siena, their task in beating Jacksonville's crease savant is going to be built upon maximizing their offensive opportunities (the Saints hold the advantage at the faceoff dot, but if Siena struggles at matriculating the ball into the attack box on its clear, opportunities to beat DeLuca become extinguished before they even begin) and continuing to bury the ball with accuracy (if not efficiently). As a team the Saints shoot well -- as indicated by their raw shooting rate and the rate at which opponents save the pill -- but it's the core of Siena's offense -- Richie Hurley, Conor Prunty, Colin Clive, Nate Barry, Danny Martinsen (he didn't play against Marist or VMI in the last few weeks and missed the Hartford game earlier in the season), and Kyle Curry -- that needs to drive the team's shooting performance: That quintet is responsible for 78.20 percent of the Saints' shots and are connecting on 32.03 percent of their attempts. If that core of players is given the appropriate volume of opportunities and they have an eye for the twine against DeLuca, Siena is going to be in good shape against the Dolphins.
  • Siena's strongest unit is on the offensive side of the field (in terms of what unit performs at the strongest rate of efficiency as a whole), and Jacksonville may need to play above its head a little bit to keep the Saints in check. If the Dolphins are successful on the day, much of it may be built upon two things: (1) Just how strong DeLuca stands between the pipes (as noted above); and (2) How many defensive opportunities Jacksonville can kill without DeLuca needing to make a stop. It's that second point that is most interesting: The Dolphins rank among the national leaders in functional defensive possessions killed, and a lot of that has to do with how well Jacksonville is creating turnovers -- only 11 teams are generating caused turnovers at a rate that exceeds the Dolphins' mark. The end result is that Jacksonville's opponents are turning the ball over on almost 51 percent of their offensive opportunities, a mark that ranks 10th in the country. The Dolphins' ability to get the ball on the ground (and for opponents to throw it away) combined with the team's run-of-play groundball work rate (among the best in the nation) has created circumstances where Jacksonville is ending defensive opportunities without asking DeLuca to do all the work, subsequently generating offensive possessions in the vacuum of a "dead" opponent offensive opportunity (a "dead" opportunity being anything other than a goal or a saved shot). To keep Siena's cadre of shooters from dictating the momentum of the game, Jacksonville's ability to create turnovers and dominate loose balls could factor into the outcome fairly significantly.
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