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2018 Men’s Lacrosse Year in Review: #34 Penn Quakers

Despite a tough schedule and a good RPI, the Quakers went below .500 and could not qualify for the NCAA Tournament.

Don Felice/Penn Athletics

With the 2018 college lacrosse season complete, it’s time to start looking back at how all 71 teams did during the season, as well as what to expect from each squad for 2019. These are not end of season rankings, as some people might think.

We’ve already begun looking back to 2018 with some team recaps thus far and continued our series this week with North Carolina and Towson.

So with that, let’s continue the recaps!

#34 Penn Quakers

Conference: Ivy League
2018 Record: 7-8 (3-3 in Ivy League play)
Postseason: Lost to Yale in Ivy League semifinals
Head coach: Mike Murphy (9th Year)

Statistical Leaders

Goals: Simon Mathias and Adam Goldner (28)
Assists: Simon Mathias (20)
Points: Simon Mathias (48)
Faceoffs: Richie Lenskold (80-of-146; 54.8%)
Ground balls: Connor Keating (58)
Caused turnovers: Kyle Thornton (16)
Goals against average: Reed Junkin (10.29 GAA)
Save percentage: Reed Junkin (48.5%)

Personnel Losses

Key seniors departing: A Kevin McGeary (27 Gs, 12 As), D/LSM Connor Keating (58 GBs, 8 CTs, 3 Gs, 4 As), D Jack Ullrich (24 GBs, 15 CTs, 1 G), SSDM James Farrell (19 GBs, 2 CTs, 4 As), FOGO Chris Santangelo (43.8% faceoff draws, 27 GBs, 1 G), M Reilly Hupfeldt (9 Gs, 4 As), M JJ McBride (3 Gs, 2 As)
Senior scoring departing: 71 of 218 points (32.6%)
Senior starts lost: 51 of 150 (34%)

Season Summary

The 7-8 record says that Penn didn’t make the NCAA Tournament in 2018. But if you look beyond that, the Quakers were a very interesting team this past season, one that finished with a 14 RPI. You can thank their tough schedule for that.

The first six games of the season alternated between wins and losses, with their biggest triumph coming against top-ranked Duke at Franklin Field in late February. But after games that made Penn seem like a legit threat in the Ivy League, they couldn’t find consistency. After the Duke win, they fell to Penn State at home.

They earned two straight wins over archrival Princeton and then Bucknell before they lost three straight to Cornell, Yale, and a stunning loss to Brown. After a much-needed win over Harvard, the Quakers fell to Saint Joseph’s by a goal for their second ever loss to the Hawks. That set up a must-win situation for Penn against Dartmouth, and they almost didn’t win it. A Kevin McGeary goal in double overtime eventually sent the Quakers to the Ivy League Tournament, where they were embarrassed by Yale, 21-6. Because of that loss to the Bulldogs, Penn could not make the NCAA Tournament due to having an under .500 record.

Junior Simon Mathias matched his goals and points total from a year ago, despite playing in two more games this year, while sophomore Adam Goldner tied Mathias with 28 goals. Mathias has scored 28 goals in all three of his seasons. Senior Kevin McGeary was a goal behind the two fellow attackmen and finished with 39 points, good for second on the team. The midfield many consisted of junior Tyler Dunn and freshman Sean Lulley, but also included seniors Reilly Hupfeldt and JJ McBride, as well as juniors Joe Licciardi and Alex Roesner.

Connor Keating got some time at close defense as well as at LSM, while fellow senior Jack Ullrich and sophomore Mark Evanchick were the stalwarts at close defense. Fellow sophomore Kyle Thornton also got into the starting lineup at times. James Farrell, Matt McIlwrick, and Jared Warner were the main short stick middies with junior Richie Lenskold and senior Chris Santangelo splitting faceoff duties for the most part. Goalie Reed Junkin started in goal for his third year, but his save percentage dipped to 48.5% in 2018.

Looking Ahead

The time to act is now for Penn. They’ve had a talented group of players around University City for three years and have brought promise to Penn. Many of them are in their final seasons, including Mathias and Junkin. At least an NCAA Tournament appearance would do the trick.

Mathias, Goldner, Lulley, Dunn, Licciardi, and Roesner all return on offense. Freshman Mitch Bartolo will also return after suffering a season-ending injury earlier in the year. The Quakers also have a new offensive coordinator in Mike Abbott who comes in from Colgate. Evanchick could become the next solid defenseman in the Ivy League and also has Kyle Thornton with him. Mike Mulqueen, Tim Sanford, and Jason Walker could see more time as well. Also look out for Noah Lejman who hasn’t played the past two seasons due to injury to possibly play if healthy. Junkin should start for his senior year in goal, while Lenskold could battle freshman Anthony Giuliani for the top FOGO spot.

Here’s who the Quakers will be adding to their roster for next year.*

Penn’s Unofficial Class of 2018

Player Position High School
Player Position High School
B.J. Farrare Defense/LSM McDonogh (MD)
Kaleb Fernandez Attack/Midfield Georgetown Prep (MD)
Dylan Gergar Attack Severn (MD)
Sam Handley Attack Jesuit (OR)
Payton Hollway Midfield Haverford School (PA)
Jack Joyce Midfield Darien (CT)
Charlie Kroot Defense Brebeuf Jesuit (IN)
Robbie Olsen Midfield Loyola Blakefield (MD)
Mark Rakowski Defense Lawrenceville School (NJ)
Miles Thompson Goalie Episcopal (VA)
Jamie Zusi Midfield/FO Pingry School (NJ)

*Compiled from a multitude of websites. Schools usually officially announce their recruiting class during the fall semester.


How many wins will Penn get in 2019?

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  • 5%
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  • 37%
    (13 votes)
  • 45%
    (16 votes)
  • 11%
    (4 votes)
35 votes total Vote Now