Needing a win to stay alive in the Ivy League Tournament chase, the Harvard men’s lacrosse team travels to No. 19/20 Princeton for a 6 p.m. showdown with the Tigers Friday, April 17 live on ESPNU.
Harvard sits in sixth place of the conference standings and will need to win out while receiving help to advance to the conference tournamet for a second straight year. Princeton, meanwhile, is looking to keep pace with Cornell for the top spot in the league.
Last Time Out
Penn scored three goals in the final 8:20 to stun the Harvard men’s lacrosse team Saturday afternoon, stealing a 10-9 win at Soldiers Field Lacrosse Stadium.
Penn pulled to within 8-7 with 10:20 to play but Keegan Michel won the ensuing faceoff for Harvard and found Deke Burns to regain a two-goal margin just eight seconds later, 9-7. The Quakers scored three straight goals, however, and took a 10-9 lead with 2:32 remaining off the stick of Kevin McGeary.
Devin Dwyer turned in a game-high four points, scoring one goal and dishing out three assists. Burns and Will Walker each found the back of the net twice to go with scores by Sean Coleman, Brian Fischer, Michel and Austin Williams.
Bryan Moore turned in another strong performance in goal, stopping 13 saves and collecting four ground balls in the loss. Dwyer finished with a game-high seven ground balls while Ryan Norton and Matt Ryan caused two turnovers apiece.
Strength of Schedule
According to data available through NCAA.com, Harvard’s schedule this season ranks as the 10th most difficult in the country based off opponent win percentage. Eight of Harvard’s 2015 opponents are either ranked or receiving votes in the polls, including five Ivy programs; North Carolina (2/2), Duke (6/6), Yale (7/7), Albany (8/8), Cornell (10/9), Brown (13/14), Princeton (19/20), and Penn (RV/–).
Winning the Close Ones
Harvard has played in five games decided by just one goal this season, including each of its last three outings, and owns a 3-2 record in one-goal games. The Crimson was 3-1 in games decided by a single score last season, and is 10-11 all-time in one-goal games under Chris Wojcik ’96.
Coming Up Clutch
Devin Dwyer scored the game-winning goal against both Cornell and Boston University, potting the deciding goal versus the Big Red with just 32 seconds remaining and against the Terriers with 2:05 to play.
Through 12 games this season, Dwyer has totaled 15 points (7g, 8a) in the fourth quarter of games and has scored at least one point in the fourth quarter in 11 of 12 contests.
Sharing the Wealth
Harvard boasts three goal scorers with 20-plus goals on the season (Deke Burns, 25; Ian Ardrey, 22; Joe Lang, 20) and has two additional attackmen who are right on their heels (Devin Dwyer, 19; Will Walker, 17). Under Chris Wojcik ’96, the Crimson has never had more than two goal scorers with 20-plus goals in a season.
Can’t Stop Him
Devin Dwyer has recorded at least one point in 38 of 39 career games, including each of the team’s last 31 outings. The junior has totaled 115 points (37g, 78a) during his current streak, and ranks fourth in program history with 89 career helpers.
Dwyer leads the Crimson with 46 points (19g, 27a) while his 2.25 assists per game rank 12th in the NCAA. Dwyer has led Harvard in scoring each of the last two years, totaling 43 points (16g, 27a) as a freshman and 47 points (12g, 35a) as a sophomore.
Have a Day
Devin Dwyer enjoyed a record-setting day at Holy Cross (March 9), matching the program records for points scored (12) and assists (8). Mike Eckert ’96 previously set the program record for points in a game with 12 versus Penn in 1995, while seven former student-athletes had recorded eight assists, most recently in 1981.
Dwyer’s 12 points represent the second-highest total in the NCAA this season while his eight assists also rank second.
Now Starting In Goal
Junior Bryan Moore is 6-5 in goal this season, having posted an 11.42 goals against average and .552 save percentage, the 19th-best percentage in the nation. Moore entered the year having played just 10:23 in his career, but has started each of the team’s last nine games and has appeared in all 12 contests.
Moore, who ranks 12th in the NCAA with 11.50 saves per game, has made at least 10 saves in seven straight games and in eight of nine starts on the year.
Bryan Moore made a career-high 23 saves against the nation’s highest-scoring offense in Albany (March 25). Moore’s 23 saves stand as the second-highest total in the NCAA this season, and are the most by an Ivy Leaguer since Dartmouth’s Fergus Campbell stopped 23 shots versus Cornell on April 3, 2010.
Matt Ryan caused five turnovers versus Albany (March 25), representing the most caused turnovers by an Ivy Leaguer this season and the highest total by a member of the Crimson since 2008 (the last year for which game-by-game stats are available).
Ryan currently leads Harvard with 24 caused turnovers on the year and ranks fifth in the NCAA in caused turnovers per game (2.0). His 24 caused turnovers are already the highest total ever by a member of the Crimson under Chris Wojcik ’96 with two regular season games to play.
Tickling the Twine
Deke Burns leads Harvard with 25 goals scored with his 2.50 goals per game average ranking as the 28th-highest total in the NCAA. Burns has scored at least one goal in nine of the 10 games he has played in this season, and bosts eight games with two or more goals.
Burns began the year in a big way, scoring seven goals in the team’s opening win over UMass (Feb. 21). The seven goals marked the most goals scored by a member of the Crimson since Jeff Cohen ’12 totaled eight versus Michigan on March 31, 2012.
Joe Lang currently ranks third on the team in points (27), is third in goals scored (20) and fourth in assists (7). The freshman has scored at least one point in 11 of 12 games this season, and boasts seven multi-point performances.
Will Walker is Harvard’s active career leader in goals scored with 67. The junior turned in 35 goals last season as a sophomore, ranking as the 12th-highest single-season total in program history.
Long stick midfielder Matt Ryan scored one goal in four straight games from Feb. 28 to March 9. Fellow long stick middie Jack Breit is the Crimson’s career scoring leader among poles with 14 points (8g, 6a).
Deke Burns was named the Ivy League Player of the Week on Feb. 23 after scoring seven goals in Harvard’s 14-13 come-from-behind win over UMass to open the season. The honor was the first of Burns’ career.
Joe Lang collected his first career Ivy League Rookie of the Week honor March 10 after totaling nine points (7g, 2a) in wins versus Quinnipiac and Penn State.
Home Field Advantage
Harvard is 27-12 at home under Chris Wojcik ’96, The Frisbie Family Head Coach for Harvard Men’s Lacrosse, including a 4-2 record this season. The Crimson is 11-8 in Harvard Stadium with Wojcik at the helm, and boasts a 16-4 record at Soldiers Field Lacrosse Stadium.
Pouring it On
Harvard scored 20 goals and dished out 17 assists in its win at Holy Cross. The 20 goals scored was the second-highest total under head coach Chris Wojcik ’96, while the team’s 17 assists was the highest total.
The Crimson defeated Bellarmine, 21-10, on March 11, 2011, representing the most goals scored under Coach Wojcik.
Tewaaraton Watch List
Devin Dwyer and Stephen Jahelka were each named to the 2015 Tewaaraton Award Watch List as two of the top 50 players across all three divisions of collegiate lacrosse. Dwyer was also included on the Watch List last year, while Jahelka is making his first appearance.
The Tewaaraton Award annually honors the top male and female college lacrosse players in the United States. The selection committees are made up of premier collegiate coaches and are appointed annually by The Tewaaraton Foundation.
Bobby Duvnjak, Brian Fischer and Devin Dwyer were each named Inside Lacrosse Preseason All-Americans. Duvnjak and Fischer were each selected to the second team, while Dwyer received third team honors.
Additionally, five Crimson were recognized on the Preseason All-NEILA first team while Harvard was chosen first in the NEILA Preseason Poll; Duvnjak, Dwyer, Fischer, Stephen Jahelka and Sean Mahon.
Brian Fischer was selected in the fifth round of the 2015 Major League Lacrosse Draft by the Boston Cannons. Fischer, who became the sixth student-athlete in program history to be taken in the draft, was chosen 34th overall as the fourth pick in the fifth round.
He joins former Harvard standouts Daniel Eipp (2014 draft 32nd overall, Rochester Rattlers), Kevin Vaughn ’12 (2012 draft 14th overall, Denver Outlaws), Daniel DiMaria ’12 (2012 draft 41st overall, Charlotte Hounds), Jason Duboe ’10 (2010 draft 33rd overall, Boston Cannons) and Henry Flood ’07 (2007 draft 32nd overall, Washington Bayhawks) as one of six Crimson to be selected in the draft.
Named to the Inside Lacrosse Preseason All-America second team, Fischer helped anchor a Harvard defense in 2014 that allowed 9.76 goals per game.
“I am pleased to announce that Jake Gambitsky, Stephen Jahelka, and Sean Mahon have been elected captains for the 2014-2015 season,” Wojcik stated. “Leadership development is an important component of our mission at Harvard and our lacrosse program. Each of our captains possess intrinsic leadership qualities, and this year I expect them to learn and grow as they help guide our team.”
Welcome to Cambridge
Chris Wojcik ’96, The Frisbie Family Head Coach for Harvard Men’s Lacrosse has once again assembled one of the top recruiting classes in the nation with the addition of 12 freshmen for the 2015 season. Harvard’s Class of 2018 has been ranked as the ninth-best recruiting class by Inside Lacrosse and features five individuals ranked in the top 100.
“We are happy to welcome our freshmen to the Harvard Lacrosse family as they arrive on campus today,” Chris Wojcik ’96, The Frisbie Family Head Coach for Harvard Men’s Lacrosse, stated. “Twelve young men join our program, representing seven states and Washington D.C. The incoming class is an accomplished group, well prepared to begin the next chapter of their lives at Harvard. We expect the class of 2018 to make a significant contribution to our program as we begin preparations for the 2015 season.”
Harvard has boasted a top-10 recruiting class each of the last six years, including third-ranked classes in 2011 and 2009, and the fourth-ranked class a year ago.