Marquette vs. North Carolina.
Time: 2:30 p.m. East Coast Standard Time.
Marquette. The Golden Eagles enter the game with a 11-4 record and a 2-game winning streak. Marquette was the darlings of the lacrosse world when when they took down Denver to win the Big East AQ last week. However, much of that goodwill went away when everyone saw them get the #6 seed. But as I always say, LET 'EM HATE!!! Marquette has nothing to apologize for, especially with their #6 RPI and #6 SOS chains hanging from their neck.
The Golden Eagles are led on offense by junior Ryan McNamara and his 38 goals, 16 assists, and 54 total. Marquette has also received major contributions from senior Connor Gately, who enters tomorrow's game with 19 goals and 14 assists.
While Marquette has a very capable offense, they are led by their defense, which for much of the year was ranked #1 in the nation (Marquette now sits at 10th, allowing only 8 goals/game). All-everything senior Liam Byrnes, proved the prognosticators right when they voted him Big East Preseason Co-Defensive Player of the Year, as Liam won the award outright last week.
- North Carolina. The Tar Heels enter the game at 8-6 and got into the tournament as an unseeded at-large. North Carolina might be one of the more unpredictable teams in the Big BBQ. Despite a rather pedestrian 5-5 out of conference record, the Heels did go 3-1 in the ACC and earned the conference's top seed before bowing out to the Orange in the first round of the ACC Tournament. The Heels have the talent to beat anyone but they could also lose to everyone in the tournament as well.
North Carolina is led on offense by Steve Pontrello and his team leading 39 goals and 53 total points. The Heels certainly have plenty of fire power behind Steve as well. Luke Goldsock's 23 goals and leads the team with 20 assists. Additionally, Chris Cloutier and Patrick Kelly are tied for 2nd on the team with 24 goals each.
One key player for the Heels may be faceoff man Stephen Kelly, who went 193-330 (59%) on the year. If North Carolina can keep control of the ball and play at the pace they like, they could make things very difficult for Marquette.
- UNC Lacrosse Steve Pontrello highlight reel.
UNC Lacrosse Steve Pontrello highlight reel.https://t.co/xRXnwo1rnC— College Crosse (@SexyTimeLax) May 14, 2016
- @AnonymousEagle did a great preview of the game.