RICHMOND — For the first time in its 19-game history, the Richmond Spiders men’s lacrosse program is receiving votes in the two major lacrosse polls this week.
Off to a 2-0 start, and sporting wins over opponents they lost to in 2014, the Spiders appear in both the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association and the InsideLacrosse.com Media Poll this week, in the “Others Receiving Votes” category.
Richmond set a school record for fewest goals allowed in the season-opening game, a 9-5 victory over Saint Joseph’s on February 7. One week later, the Spiders set the team mark for offense in a 15-7 win over Rutgers. Sophomore Mitch Goldberg broke the school record with five goals in that contest.
The Spiders’ 2-0 start marks the first time the young team has won back-to-back games in the regular season. Last year, the Spiders posted a 6-11 overall mark, which included winning the Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament Championship and earning a berth to the NCAA Tournament, the first time a first-year program has appeared in the Championship since its inception in 1971.
Currently, the Spiders are ranked seventh in the NCAA in scoring defense (allowing six goals per game), ninth in scoring marking (winning by an average of six goals per game) and 13th in scoring offense (scoring 12 goals per contest).
Goalie Benny Pugh (Powhatan, Virginia / Woodberry Forest School) was the Southern Conference Defensive Player of the Week last week, with this week’s awards to be announced on Tuesday morning. Pugh sits fourth in the NCAA stats for save percentage (0.703), sixth in goals-against average (5.79) and eighth in saves per game (13.00) through two weeks of the regular season.
According to these latest polls, the Spiders will face three opponents in the Top 20, including this weekend’s opponent, Marquette. The Golden Eagles are also off to a 2-0 start and have beaten two teams (No. 18 Lehigh and No. 17 Hofstra) ranked in both polls at the time of the meeting, both by one-goal margins. Richmond also has No. 5 Virginia and No. 4 North Carolina on the remaining schedule for this season.
The Marquette game is scheduled for noon on Sunday at Robins Stadium. Admission for Richmond lacrosse is free this season.