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Philly Phour Phocus: On The Right Track

Just a Philly kid (who’s right near Madison Square Garden where Villanova might win the Big East Tournament tonight) covering Philly teams.

NFL: Green Bay Packers at Chicago Bears Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

For the first time this year, every Philly team got a win. Think positive, folks.

Welcome to another edition of the Philly Phour Phocus, which is properly spelled for the occasion. Once again, we're following all four Philly teams throughout the season, and updating their chances of repping the great city in this year's Final Four in...Foxborough.

Last week, three of the four teams lost a game (props to St. Joe’s for going undefeated this week, but Drexel got their first win of the season last night against Bryant, while Villanova kinda upset Brown on the road, Penn fell to Penn State but bounced back against Navy, and #WhitneyInOT hit the Philadelphia area. Can the Philly teams continue their semi-hot successes? To the Big Board we go! This week's Philly Phour Phocus Big Board is sponsored by Torresdale. Torresdale: The former home of St. Katherine Drexel, who was the son of Francis Drexel, who was the brother of Anthony Drexel, who founded Drexel University.

Philly Phour Phocus Big Board

Team 2017 Overall Record 2017 Conference Record 2016 Conference Record Last Week Next Game
Team 2017 Overall Record 2017 Conference Record 2016 Conference Record Last Week Next Game
Drexel 3-4 0-0 2-3 (4th in CAA) W vs. St. Joe's, W @ St. John's Sun. @ Providence
Penn 3-3 0-1 4-2 (3rd in Ivy) L @ Michigan, L vs. Princeton Sat. @ Cornell
St. Joe's 3-5 0-0 5-1 (1st in NEC) L @ Drexel, L @ Delaware Sat. @ Bryant
Villanova 3-4 0-0 3-2 (3rd in Big East) L vs. Delaware, W @ Brown Tues. vs. Bucknell, Sat. @ Fairfield

Drexel

The Dragons started the week with another loss, falling to Marist on the road, 11-7. Robert Frazee had three goals and an assist, while Cole Shafer recorded a hat-trick, and Reid Bowering put up the other goal. Jimmy Joe Granito made nine saves, but face-offs remain a concern, as Jimmeh Koita went 8-of-19 from the X. The Dragons were streaky on defense, as they gave up 10 of Marist’s 11 total goals off runs. The Red Foxes had two three-goal runs and a four-goal run in the duration of the game.

But there was light at the end of the tunnel on Friday, as the Drexel returned home to a snowy Vidas Field and knocked off Bryant for the third straight season, 7-5. The Dragons went on a 5-0 run to start the scoring midway through the second quarter, and had a 5-1 third quarter as well. Bowering had a pair of goals and assists, and Shafer had three scores, with Granito making nine saves once again. Face-offs were bad once again, with Koita going 4-of-14 off draws. Bryant did end the game with a 4-0 fourth quarter to put pressure on Drexel, but the Dragons were able to hold onto their lead in the fourth quarter.

Current Big Dance Chance: 25% (no movement from last week). The Marist loss is a tough one, but they bounced back for a good win against a good Bryant team. The Dragons host St. Joe’s on Sunday in a Philly Phour Phocus and City Six battle, before taking on St. John’s next weekend.

Penn

The Quakers got their first loss of the season with a 14-13 defeat by Penn State The Nittany Lions trailed 7-4 at halftime, but got ahead in the third quarter thanks to a 7-3 period. Tyler Dunn led the way with four goals, while Simon Mathias and Alex Roesner each put up hat-tricks. Reed Junkin had nine saves. Penn went 7-of-31 from the face-off X against freshman stud Gerard Arceri.

Penn bounced back with an 11-9 win over Navy Tuesday on Adams Field. Mathias led the way with three goals and one assist, while long stick midfielder Connor Keating put up two goals on three shots. Penn’s face-off crew went 5-of-23 against Brady Dove and Joe Varello.

Current Big Dance Chance: 60% (down from 65% last week). Penn did contain Mac O’Keefe and Grant Ament to an extent last week in Happy Valley, but came out on the losing end. Their face-offs are a concern for the Quakers. They have Michigan in the Big House later today.

St. Joe’s

The Hawks look like they’re back on track, first with an 18-6 blowout win over Manhattan. St. Joe’s led 11-4 at halftime against the Jaspars. Chris Blewitt had a career-high five goals and an assist, while teammate Jason Kelly had a career day overall with four goals and two assists for six points. Kevin Reidinger had a hat-trick, and T.J. Jones made seven saves, with Danny Manning going 13-of-18 in the face-off department.

Yesterday on Sweeney Field, the Hawk edged out the Hawks in overtime, 6-5. The other Hawks came from Monmouth. Kelly had two goals and two assists, and Reidinger also added with a pair of goals. Jones made 14 saves and Manning lost only two face-offs the entire game. But the game-winning goal is a thing of beaut.

Current Big Dance Chance: 60% (up from 58% last week). Beating Manhattan isn’t really anything big to brag about, but Monmouth is a decent win and a decent place to show where the Hawks currently are. They have Drexel on Sunday in University City.

Villanova

The Wildcats started the week off with a 13-10 loss to Delaware at home. Jack Curran had four goals to lead the Wildcats, while six other players recorded goals, including Jake Froccaro. Along with his goal, he had an assist and went 13-of-18 from the face-off X. Nick Testa got the start in goal but made six saves and gave up seven goals, while Dan Willis gave up six goals and made eight saves.

But Nova ended the week on a high note with a 17-15 win over Brown in Rhode Island, thanks in part to a seven goal third quarter to eventually take the lead for the rest of the game. Curran and Christian Cuccinello each had four goals and four assists in the high-scoring affair, while Jake Froccaro had a pair of goals and went 14-of-21 on face-offs. Danny Seibel and Connor Kirst also put up two goals each. Willis got the start this time and made only three saves but gave up seven goals. Testa played in the second half, where he made four saves but gave up eight goals. That’s still a fluid situation over on the Main Line.

Current Big Dance Chance: 35% (down from 40% last week). They lost to Delaware who looks kind of good in Bob Shillinglaw’s final season with the Blue Hens. Even though they defeated Brown, the Bears don’t look that good either, and are now 1-3 to start the season. Nova has Bucknell on Tuesday at Villanova Stadium, and I might be there!

It’s March, and since everyone’s dancing, let’s also dance!