March 15, 2002

M. Lax Faces PSU, Opens Ivy Slate Against Yale

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The men’s lacrosse team (3-1) will enter the heart of its season during the spring break with contests against Penn State tomorrow and the Ivy League opener against Yale the following Saturday.

The Red is coming off a 16-4 win over Canisius on Tuesday evening. Despite a lethargic start, Cornell broke out for nine goals in the third quarter to put the game out of reach.

The laxers, typically regarded as a stingy defensive team, have recorded 32 goals in their last two games thanks in large part to a new-look offense that stresses ball movement. Cornell has also benefited from the contributions of standout freshmen Sean Greenhalgh and Justin Redd. Greenhalgh, who recorded nine goals in his first three games, suffered a concussion against Maryland, Baltimore County last Saturday and is questionable for tomorrow’s contest.

“Sean is day to day. I am pretty sure he’ll be prepared for the Yale game,” head coach Jeff Tambroni said.

The Nittany Lions dropped their first game of the season to Georgetown, 11-10, after opening up the season with a trio of wins against Notre Dame, Fairfield and Air Force.

Penn State is a high-octane offensive minded team, which makes up for what it lacks in seniors (the team has only three) in young talent.

“They are extremely athletic at both ends of the ball. They are a little young, but we are aware of their ability,” Tambroni said.

The Cornell defense will have its hands full with the Lions’ leading scorer, senior Will Driscoll, who has netted 11 goals on the year.

“He is their most dangerous offensive player. We have to make sure we are aware of where he is at every facet of the game,” Tambroni said.

After a more than disappointing start in its last game, the Red has stressed the need to play with intensity from the opening whistle.

“We just didn’t come out with a whole lot of emotion,” the head coach remarked. “That has to change against a team like Penn State. We have to go out and play for 60 minutes and leave our heart on our sleeves.”

Yale, a team that has been a thorn in the side of the Cornell in recent seasons, is a similar breed to Penn State, playing a speedy, offensive-minded style.

The Bulldogs will be without the services of their top offensive player, senior Brian Hunt, an All-American honorable mention last season who was third in Division I in scoring. Despite his absence, the Elis have performed admirably on the offensive end, averaging over 15 scores a game.

Tambroni said the Red would look to counter the offensively potent team with its athletic defensemen, adding that the squad would look to minimize Yale’s scoring by slowing the pace of the game.

“I’m very hopeful we will be excited for the Yale game,” Tambroni concluded. “It’s the start of a whole new season.”

Archived article by Gary Schueller