DETROIT (2/4/2015) — The 2015 lacrosse season is right around the corner and for the first time in school history the Buckeyes will be coming to the Great Lakes State as the University of Detroit Mercy men’s lacrosse team hosts Ohio State on Saturday, Feb. 7.
The game will be played indoors at Ultimate Soccer Arenas in Pontiac, the indoor home of the red, white and blue. Tickets to the game start at $10, but a number of ticket packages are available for the season. To purchase tickets and for more information, click here.
Detroit will look to start the season off on the right foot and claim its first-ever victory over OSU as the Buckeyes have won all five prior meetings – all in Columbus.
The Titans will have a young squad this season with just 16 upperclassmen on its’ 47-man roster, but most of those are the accomplished playmakers on the squad.
The Titan defense is well stocked with talent, especially in the back with all four main defenseman returning along with a starting goalie. Junior All-MAAC standout Paul Bitetti leads the back line and will be joined by seniors Joe Gifford and Chris Shevins and junior Jordan Yono. The 2014 MAAC Rookie of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year Jason Weber is also back guarding the pipes.
On offense, Detroit returns four of its top six goal scorers from a year ago, including its top attackman in senior Shayne Adams and the entire midfield line of seniors Brandon Beauregard, Mike Birney and Scott Drummond.
Ohio State made the NCAA Tournament in 2013 and made another run at an appearance e last season going 6-8 and tying for first in the ECAC with a 3-1 record.
The Buckeyes return 27 letter winners and eight starters from last year’s squad, led by USILA Third Team All-American Jesse King. The midfielder – who was also Second Team All-ECAC and is a preseason Inside Lacrosse Second Team All-American – tallied 55 points on 29 goals and 22 assists last season. The defense is headlined by Inside Lacrosse Honorable Mention All-American Robby Haus, who totaled 35 ground balls and 16 caused turnovers a year ago.
There will be live stats for the game, but no live video.
AGAINST THE BIG TEN
This is the first year that the Big Ten will sponsor men’s lacrosse with six teams in the league in Johns Hopkins, Maryland, Michigan, Ohio State, Penn State and Rutgers.
Detroit is 1-7 all-time against teams in the league with a 0-5 mark against Ohio State, 1-1 versus Michigan and 0-1 against Maryland.
ABOUT OHIO STATE
Ohio State made the NCAA Tournament in 2013 and made another run at an appearance last season going 6-8 and tying for first in the ECAC with a 3-1 record.
The Buckeyes return 27 letter winners and eight starters from last year’s squad, led by USILA Third Team All-American Jesse King. The midfielder – who was also Second Team All-ECAC and is a preseason Inside Lacrosse Second Team All-American – tallied 55 points on 29 goals and 22 assists last season.
The offense also has Turner Evans back at midfield who scored 29 points on 18 goals and 11 assists, while Carter Brown is the top attackman back with 34 points and 22 goals.
The defense is led by Inside Lacrosse Honorable Mention All-American Robby Haus, who totaled 35 ground balls and 16 caused turnovers a year ago.
Jake Withers handled the faceoff duties last season and was 111-of-218 (.509) picking up a team-high 64 ground balls.
OSU will have a new look at goalie with the graduation of its two main netminders last season.
LAST TIME VS. THE BUCKEYES
The Detroit men’s lacrosse team had a two-goal lead early, but could not hold on as the Titans saw #18/19 Ohio State pull away in the second half to down the red, white, and blue, 14-8, in their season opener at the Woody Hayes Athletic Complex back in 2013.
Mike Birney led the Titan offense with his first career hat trick, finishing with a team-high three goals. Shayne Adams had a pair of goals and an assist and Brandon Beauregard found the back of the net once.
It was 6-6 at the half, but Ohio State scored the first two goals of the third. Detroit was able to push the ball down the field and Beauregard struck for his lone marker and the Titans trailed by just one, 8-7, at the 7:04 mark of the third, but that is when OSU broke the game open with five-straight goals and the Buckeyes surged ahead 13-7 lead with 12:10 left in the game.
A.J. Levell made 17 saves and picked up a team-high five ground balls. Levell saw 47 Ohio State shots as they outshot the Titans, 47-20. Detroit was 16-of-20 in clears and was 2-of-4 with the extra-man attack.
Logan Schuss ended with 10 points in the game for OSU – netting seven goals – while Carter Brown had six points with two goals and Jesse King netted five markers.
Detroit is 1-5 all-time in season openers with that win coming last year in an exciting 11-10 triumph over Mercer at Ultimate Soccer Arenas.
UDM is 3-3 in home openers and has won three of the last four when starting the season in its friendly confines.
PLAYING AT HOME
UDM is 12-12 at home on Titan Field in its history as well as 3-3 in home games played indoors at Ultimate Soccer Arenas in Pontiac.
The Titans are 3-3 all-time in games played at Ultimate Soccer Arenas, the program’s home indoor facility.
The red, white and blue will play three games in its indoor home in 2015, matching last year’s high of three contests.
UDM defeated Mercer in 19-3 in 2011 and 11-10 last season as well as Michigan, 13-9, in 2012.
The three losses came to Bellarmine, 12-8, in 2010 and 2014 as well as 14-13 in overtime to Michigan last year.
WHAT A CROWD
Detroit saw 1,909 fans come out to see the red, white and blue face Michigan last season at Ultimate Soccer Arenas in Pontiac
It marked the third time that UDM has played before 1,000+ in its history, and it was also the largest crowd for a lacrosse game or any Olympic sport in Titan history.
The other two games with 1,000 or more was on Feb. 12, 2012, when 1,800 fans came to see the Titans take on Michigan, while on Feb. 6, 2010, 1,565 fans were in the house to watch Detroit battle Bellarmine.
FOUR TITANS TABBED ALL-MAAC, DETROIT PICKED FOURTH IN PRESEASON POLL
Four Detroit laxers received preseason accolades, and UDM was selected to make the MAAC Championship for the fifth-straight year as the MAAC released its’ preseason poll
Detroit totaled 30 points in the preseason poll – voted on by the league’s seven head coaches – trailing defending champion Siena’s 46, Marist’s 38 and Canisius’ 33. Quinnipiac (27), Manhattan (13) and Monmouth (9) rounded out the poll. The top four teams in the standings at the end of the regular season will once again battle it out at the MAAC Championship, hosted by the highest seeded full MAAC member.
Just like the Inside Lacrosse preseason All-Conference Team that came out in late December, UDM saw the same four players earn the preseason honor in senior attackman Shayne Adams, senior midfielder Mike Birney, junior defenseman Paul Bitetti and sophomore goalie Jason Weber.
FOUR TITANS SELECTED PRESEASON ALL-MAAC BY INSIDE LACROSSE
The Detroit men’s lacrosse team was picked to tie for second place and four Titans were named Preseason All-Conference in the annual Inside Lacrosse Face-Off Yearbook.
Siena was the conference favorite, while Detroit and Marist tied for second and Canisius claimed fourth, the same four teams that made the MAAC Championship last season. Quinnipiac, Manhattan and Monmouth rounded out the poll the publication did in conjunction with the league’s head coaches.
Senior attackman Shayne Adams, senior midfielder Mike Birney, junior defenseman Paul Bitetti and sophomore goalie Jason Weber were each tabbed to the Preseason All-Conference Team.
WEBER TABBED PRESEASON HONORABLE MENTION ALL-AMERICAN BY INSIDE LACROSSE
UDM sophomore goalie Jason Weber was selected a Preseason Honorable Mention All-American by Inside Lacrosse in the media publication’s annual Face-Off Yearbook.
Weber is the only player from that MAAC that made the list of Preseason All-Americans, which includes the First, Second and Third team as well as Honorable Mention.
The preseason accolades comes after a spectacular freshman season that saw him earn both MAAC Rookie of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year as well as First Team All-MAAC. He was the first player in MAAC history to be both the Rookie and Defensive Player of the Year and just the second freshman in conference history to earn a league player of the year status as Marist’s Keith Detelj was the ROY and Offensive POY in 2004.
Weber led all Division I netminders with a school record 16.27 saves per game and a .642 save percentage tallying 179 saves in his 11 starts. He was also 16th in the nation and led the conference with a 9.07 goals against average, another UDM record. He recorded double-digit saves in all 11 games he played in reaching 15 saves eight times and a school record 23 in a home victory over Marist.
BORN AND RAISED IN MICHIGAN
While the Titans do recruit nationally – witnessed by 11 states and two countries on their 48-man roster – there is no arguing that Detroit loves to keep players in their home state as 24 of UDM’s 47 players (51.0%) hail from the Great Lakes State.
Canada with eight and New York with five follows next. Pennsylvania has two and Arizona, Florida, Indiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Ohio, Texas and Virginia have one apiece playing for the Titans.
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