Pioneers to host pregame tailgate on March 7
DENVER – The University of Denver men’s lacrosse program begins its 50th season of lacrosse on February 14 against Duke (in Atlanta, Ga.). DU’s yearlong celebration is headlined by a pregame tailgate for alumni of the program before Denver’s March 7 clash against preseason No. 2 Notre Dame to honor the history of the program.
“As the University of Denver enters its 50th year of lacrosse, I am honored to be the head coach at such an amazing place,” head coach Bill Tierney said. “Men’s lacrosse here had very humble beginnings, with people of great passion for the game getting it off the ground. We must always be reminded of the men who played the game for pure joy without television, travel support, uniform and equipment manufacturer sponsorships and with the likes of Peter Barton Stadium only a distant hope. The past players, coaches, administrators and support staff who have worked so hard to allow us to have what we have today should be applauded and thanked for all they have done, especially as we enter the 2015 season as the No. 1 ranked team in the country.”
Throughout the season, the DU men’s lacrosse Twitter account (@DU_MLAX) will feature historical notes and use #50YearsDULax.
Both members of the DU Hall of Fame, Harry Beaver III and Charles Dean founded the lacrosse program 50 years ago. Together the duo brought the sport of lacrosse to the intramural fields and helped develop it into a recognized club sport, only to hope it would evolve into what it is today; a nationally renowned Division I program.
Denver began as a club program in 1966 under head coach Pete Richardson. After going through a pair of transitions between a club and varsity program, the Pioneers turned NCAA Division II in lacrosse in 1991 as members of the RMILL. DU went through its DI pending season in 1998 before becoming a full Division I program under head coach Jamie Munro in the 1999 campaign.
The Crimson and Gold spent 12 seasons in the GWLL before joining the ECAC under their current head coach. Under their current sixth-year bench boss, the Pioneers played four seasons in the ECAC before finding their current home in the BIG EAST.
Former alums and coaches will receive information in the time to come, and are encouraged to reach out to [email protected] with questions.
Season tickets are on sale for the 2015 season for $70. Fans can purchase tickets at the Daniel L. Ritchie Center Box Office, online or by phone at 303-871-2336.
Denver opens its 2015 campaign against [3/3] Duke on February 14 at 1 p.m. ET/11 a.m. MT in Atlanta, Ga. The Pioneers begin their home schedule with the Frontier Airlines Faceoff Classic on Feb. 21-22.
Tickets are on sale now for the 2015 NCAA Quarterfinals at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Fans can purchase tickets for the quarterfinal games at the link here.
ABOUT THE 2015 PIONEERS: Denver, coming off its third Championship Weekend appearance in the last four years, returns three of its four USILA All-Americans from a team that finished 16-3 a year ago, including seniors Wesley Berg (Coquitlam, B.C.) and Erik Adamson (Anaheim Hills, Calif.). The 2015 Pioneers have been ranked No. 1 in all three preseason polls.
DU’s sophomore class includes USILA Honorable Mention All-American Christian Burgdorf (Westfield, N.J.), Inside Lacrosse Freshman of the Year Zach Miller (Steamburg, N.Y.) and ACC Freshman of the Year and Maryland transfer Connor Cannizzaro (Cazenovia, N.Y.). 2014 BIG EAST Goalkeeper of the Year Ryan LaPlante (Fort Collins, Colo.) is also set to return for his senior season.
Denver’s midfield returns senior Sean Cannizzaro (Cazenovia, N.Y.), who has 26 points in 45 career games, with 16 of his 26 coming a year ago. Classmate and long stick midfielder Mike Riis (Carlsbad, Calif.), along with sophomore Tyler Pace (Mission, B.C.) and junior Chris Hampton (Bethesda, Md.) will bolster the Pioneer midfield. Junior attacker Jack Bobzien (Littleton, Colo.) averaged 3.32 points a game a year ago, netting 42 goals in 19 games.
Senior defender Carson Cannon (Stillwater, Minn.) brings 52 career appearances to Denver’s defense, joined in the back by junior Pat Karole (Glen Ridge, N.J.), and a trio of sophomores in Colin Siracuse (Short Hills, N.J.), Christian Burgdorf (Westfield, N.J.) and Jake Nolan (Columbus, Ohio). Burgdorf started in 18 games for the Pioneers a year ago, grabbing 28 ground balls and causing 13 turnovers, while Nolan saw action in all 19 games, finishing the campaign with 21 ground balls and six caused turnovers.
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