Lacrosse the Internet: February 25, 2014

Hofstra is feeling better about itself, nobody loses just because of face-offs, and more.

This is obviously your favorite site, but other people actually write important stuff sometimes. Now is that sometimes.

A Full Pint

Hofstra gains confidence in loss to Princeton
Hofstra didn't look too bad for much of its game against Princeton this past weekend, taking it to the Tigers and dominating the pace of play despite Princeton's quick-strike ability. The Pride ultimately left Class of 1952 Campground with a loss, but the feeling around Hofstra's situation has changed since a season-opening defeat at the hands of Marquette:

"We proved to ourselves that we could run with just about anybody out there and that's what we got rolling," Tierney said. "We need to continue this confidence and continue to play with this kind of heart."

The Pride are in action tonight against Fairfield, a team that has unleashed fury on its two opponents this season. How Hofstra plays against the Stags could ultimately determine whether Hofstra learned any valuable lessons from their trip to New Jersey this past weekend.

First-half injury dooms Rutgers
Look: Nobody loses solely because of face-off play. Nobody. Face-off play impacts a game, but simply losing draws doesn't mean that you can't play defense. I understand Brian Brecht's disappointment with Joe Nardella's departure against Virginia . . .

“Nardella was taken out with a cheap shot … and that was a big game changer,” said head coach Brian Brecht. “It’s disappointing that it happened and even more disappointing that there was no flag, no penalty on such a play. And I don’t want to say that was the whole thing, but there’s no doubt that the duel [is] the ground balls. The differences in possession in the second half would not even be close if we had our All-American faceoff guy out there.”

. . . but Rutgers didn't lose simply because Nardella wasn't able to play in the second half. Hell, the Scarlet Knights were only minus-three in face-off margin in the second half after going plus-three in the first half against the Cavaliers. (Interestingly, Rutgers was only plus-one in possession margin in the first half with Nardella.) When you total everything up in the final 30 minutes of play, the Scarlet Knights were in a minus-four possession deficit to Virginia (17-21), thanks in part to the face-off deficit but also in part to Rutgers successfully clearing just six of 10 opportunities.

So what happened in the second half? Rutgers offensive efficiency dropped from 36.36 in the first half to 23.53 in the second half while Virginia's offensive efficiency from the first half (47.62) barely decreased in the second half (42.86). If Rutgers could get some stops in the second half maybe the final result is different. I understand that Brecht was steamed over losing Nardella, but it wasn't the only reason that the Scarlet Knights lost.

Flights

Faceoff issues return to haunt Syracuse lacrosse in lopsided loss to Maryland
Writing about face-offs is a cottage industry in Syracuse these days.

Staats moves to first-line attack, replacing senior Maltz
This is . . . something.

BU men lose lacrosse home opener
Binghamton lost their home opener 13-9 to visiting Siena on Saturday afternoon from the Bearcats Sports Complex. The Saints, who were preseason MAAC favorites, had a trio of players record a hat trick, powering them to their second straight win.

Penn men's lacrosse falls to Duke in season opener
Last year, the Penn men’s lacrosse team danced with the Blue Devils and came out on top. This year, the team wasn’t quite as lucky.

Navy men's lacrosse team bows to Bucknell
A scoreless second quarter by the Navy men’s lacrosse team opened the door for Bucknell as the Bison used a four-quarter second period to take a lead it would not relinquish en route to posting a 9-6 victory over the Mids Saturday afternoon at Christy Mathewson Stadium in Lewisburg, Pa.

Cornell slips past Hobart
Oh so close.

Lehigh University men's lacrosse team defeats Boston University 10-7 in Patriot League opener
The Mountain Hawks struggled in an odd spot.

JHU coach gets win No. 150
Pretty, pretty, pretty good!

Swezey: Wounded Warriors' Stories Resonate With Army, Furman, Catholic
Swezey's really good at his job.

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