Army Set For Semifinal Showdown With Bucknell Friday

Alex Daly

Alex Daly

April 25, 2013

Army vs. Bucknell Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

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BETHLEHEM, Pa. - Army (8-4) makes its unprecedented ninth-straight Patriot League Tournament presented by Rockin' Refuel appearance this weekend. The Black Knights are coming off back-to-back wins, captured the No. 3 seed and will face No. 2 Bucknell in Friday's first semifinal game. Face-off is set for 4:36 p.m. at host Lehigh's Ulrich Sports Complex.

The winner will take on the winner of No. 1 Lehigh and No. 4 Colgate in Sunday's championship game, the victor of which will earn the Patriot League's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

HOW TO FOLLOW THE ACTION
Television: CBS Sports Network will carry the entire Patriot League Tournament live. Dave Ryan (play-by-play), Evan Washburn (color analyst) and Sheehan Stanwick-Burch (sideline) are on the call.

Radio:
1390-AM, 1340-AM throughout the Hudson Valley.

Web: Knight Vision will carry an audio feed of the game on www.goARMYsports.com.

Live Stats: Live statistics will be available for the game. Visit the lacrosse schedule page of www.goARMYsports.com to access the link.

Twitter: Follow @Army_Lacrosse for in-game scoring updates.

SETTING THE STAGE
Army (8-4) makes its unprecedented ninth-straight Patriot League Tournament presented by Rockin' Refuel appearance this weekend. The Black Knights are coming off back-to-back wins, captured the No. 3 seed and will face No. 2 Bucknell in Friday's first semifinal game. Face-off is set for 4:36 p.m. at host Lehigh's Ulrich Sports Complex. The winner will take on the winner of No. 1 Lehigh and No. 4 Colgate in Sunday's championship game, the victor of which will earn the Patriot League's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

GLESENER, BUCKLEY EARN PATRIOT LEAGUE MAJOR AWARDS
Sophomore attackman John Glesener garnered Patriot League Offensive Player of the Year honors, senior close defenseman Brendan Buckley picked up conference Defensive Player of the Year laurels and Army totaled six All-Patriot League performers (see page 2) in a vote by the head coaches this week. Glesener is the first Army player since first team All-American Jeremy Boltus to win the league's Offensive Player of the Year award. Boltus took home the honor in 2011. Buckley continued a trend of Black Knights capturing Defensive Player of the Year plaudits, becoming the third Army player in the last four years to do so. He joins Tim Henderson (2012) and Bill Henderson (2011 and 2010), both of whom were All-American defensemen.

ARMY IN THE PATRIOT LEAGUE TOURNAMENT
Army is 4-7 in Patriot League Tournament games since the playoff format was established in 2004. This marks the third year in a row the Black Knights will play as the No. 3 seed and first time in three years they will face Bucknell. The Black Knights are 2-2 when facing the Bison in the tournament. Army did not make the field in 2004, but has played in all nine tournaments since then - eight of which have come under the direction of head coach Joe Alberici.

AWARDS SEASON
Sophomore attackman John Glesener and senior close defenseman Brendan Buckley garnered Patriot League Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year honors, respectively, highlighting a group of six All-Patriot League performers. As voted on by the conference's seven head coaches and announced Tuesday morning, Glesener and Buckley joined senior attackman Garrett Thul and freshman face-off specialist Alex Daly on the first team. Sophomore goalkeeper Sam Somers and sophomore long stick middie Jimbo D'Aprilewere named all-conference second team. Thul is a four-time All-Patriot League performer, while Daly was one of two rookies to make the all-league cut. Somers and D'Aprile earned all-league status for the first time.

PULLING RANK
Coming off back-to-back wins, Army earned its first national ranking of the season. The Black Knights landed No. 19 in Monday's USILA Coaches Poll and continued to receive votes in the Nike/Inside Lacrosse Media Poll. Army is one of three nationally ranked Patriot League teams heading into the weekend, joining No. 13/16 Bucknell and No. 16/14 Lehigh.

LEFTOVERS FROM THE HOLY CROSS GAME
• Army led 8-1 at halftime and improved to 23-0 all-time against Holy Cross with a 14-5 win in Worcester, Mass., last Saturday night.
• Ten different Black Knights found the back of the cage, as Army dominated nearly every facet of the game en route to its eighth win of the season.
• Sophomore attackman John Glesener authored his seventh hat trick of the season to lead all scorers.
• Senior close defenseman Brendan Buckley scored a career-high two goals in transition, while freshman attackman Tim Coll matched Buckley with a career-best two goals.
• Buckley marked Holy Cross' points leader, James Kennedy, and held him scoreless on Senior Night. The Army tri-captain garnered Patriot League Defensive Player of the Week honors for his efforts.

SCOUTING BUCKNELL
A mainstay in the national polls this season, Bucknell (11-3, 5-1) has won three of its last four games and earned the No. 2 seed in the Patriot League Tournament. Boasting one of the most unique styles of play in the country, the Bison have posted wins over four top-20 programs this season (Massachusetts, Drexel, Cornell, Albany). Bucknell posted six players on the All-Patriot League teams this week and has the 2013 Patriot League Rookie of the Year Sean Doyle on its roster. Sophomore David Dickson tops the team with 49 points (7G, 42A), while junior Todd Heritage and senior Chase Bailey have scored 30 goals apiece. Senior close defenseman Mike Huffner is a second team All-Patriot League selection and was tabbed a Senior CLASS Award finalist. The Bison are fourth nationally in man-down defense and eighth in the country in caused turnovers (9.36 per game).

CLOSE ENCOUNTERS
While Army owns a 26-11 all-time record against Bucknell, the most recent encounters have been thrillers. Two of the last five meetings have gone to overtime, including last season's thrilling 6-5 double-OT Army win in Lewisburg, Pa. The last eight games have all been played within two goals.

ROAD WARRIORS
Army is going for its sixth win away from West Point this season on Friday at the Patriot League Tournament. The Black Knights defeated Rutgers, Colgate, Navy and Holy Cross on their respective home fields, while also downing Michigan on neutral territory in the second Orange Bowl Lacrosse Classic at Sun Life Stadium.

THE "X" FACTOR
Freshman middie Alex Daly has turned his game up a notch during Patriot League play, particularly in the latter stages of the regular season. He won the first 12 draws and went 19-of-22 in the face-off "x" in a 14-7 win at rival Navy on April 13. The following Saturday, he posted a 15-of-19 effort in the Black Knights' 14-5 victory at Holy Cross. The New Market, Md., native amassed a career-high nine ground balls in both games. Daly earned Patriot League Rookie of the Week plaudits on April 15, along with being named the national Cascade Rookie of the Week and the Army Athletic Association Athlete of the Week that same afternoon. He is a first team All-Patriot League honoree.

Daly won his 100th face-off at Holy Cross and heads into this weekend at 112-of-198 (.566) on the season. He is 73-of-118 (.619) in six Patriot League games. Daly wears No. 88 in honor of his favorite athlete, Dale Earnhardt Jr.

GENTLEMAN AND A SCHOLAR
Army senior close defenseman Brendan Buckley is one of 10 NCAA Division I lacrosse student-athletes who excel both on and off the field and are finalists for the 2013 Senior CLASS Award. The candidates must be a senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence - community, classroom, character and competition. An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.

Buckley carries a 3.987 cumulative grade-point average and ranks 11th in his class of 1,079 cadets. He posted a 4.0 GPA in the fall semester and was a first team Academic All-American last spring. The reigning Patriot League Scholar-Athlete of the Year and two-time all-league honoree, Buckley has been named to the Dean's List all seven semesters at West Point and has been honored with the Distinguished Cadet Award and Superintendent's Award for Excellence. An Engineering major, Buckley branched Field Artillery and posted with the 173rd Airborne Brigade in Schweinfurt, Germany.

Army's last Senior CLASS Award finalist in lacrosse was Andrew Maisano, who won the award following the Black Knights' 2010 Patriot League championship season.

In addition to the aforementioned accomplishments, Buckley repeated as the Patriot League Men's Lacrosse Scholar-Athlete of the Year this week. He was tabbed the 2013 Patriot League Defensive Player of the Year as well.

DEFENSE DOES IT
Having given up double-digit goals just once this season (L, 10-6 vs. Lehigh), Army ranks fourth nationally in scoring defense. The Black Knights surrendering 7.33 goals per game through 12 contests. The Black Knights land 12th nationally in caused turnovers (9.08 per game) and ninth in ground balls (33.5 per game). See page 2 for a complete listing of all national statistics.

SAVING GRACE
With just 11 career starts under his belt, sophomore goalkeeper Sam Somers has established himself as one of the top goalies in the league. Earlier this week, the Wilton, Conn., native picked up Patriot League second team honors. After a bit of a battle to start the season, Somers won the starting job after a career-high 18-save performance at nationally ranked Syracuse on Feb. 24. He has been in the cage for all but 20 minutes since that game and currently leads the NCAA with a 6.48 goals-against average. His gaudy .605 save percentage lands sixth among NCAA Division I goalkeepers. Both statistics top the Patriot League.

SOPHOMORE SENSATION
Sophomore John Glesener, who moved from the midfield to Army's attack this season, has proven that shift to be a brilliant one for head coach Joe Alberici and his staff. Glesener has posted a hat trick in six of the last seven games and stands as the Black Knights' points leader with 56 (29G, 27A). He punched in a career-high five goals in Army's 10-4 win at Colgate on Easter Sunday and seven of eight career hat tricks have occured this season (at UMass, at Rutgers, vs. Lehigh, vs. Lafayette, at Colgate, at Navy, at Holy Cross). The Camillus, N.Y., native leads the Patriot League and ranks fifth in the NCAA, averaging 4.67 points per game.

FOR THE RECORD
Senior attackman Garrett Thul is now Army's all-time leading goal scorer with 159 tallies. The Flemington, N.J., native broke the 35-year-old career goals record when he tied a career-best seven goals in a 12-1 win over Michigan on March 2 at Sun Life Stadium in Miami, Fla. Thul passed Scott Finlay (1975-78), was named the Orange Bowl Lacrosse Classic Most Valuable Player and also picked up his second Patriot League Offensive Player of the Week award of the season on March 5. He now stands second to Colgate senior Peter Baum, the reigning Tewaaraton Award winner, on the Patriot League's career goals list and is second among the nation's active goal scorers.

GOOD THINGS COME IN SMALL PACKAGES
Freshman Will Mazzone and classmate Connor Cook have split time starting as Army's third attackman this season. The duo measures 5-6 and 5-5, respectively, but show good things can come in small packages. Mazzone posted a career-high four-points (2G, 2A) against Bucknell on April 6 and has 15 points (8G, 7A) on the season. Cook started the first seven games of the season and owns 10 points (4G, 6A).

TWEET, TWEET
Fans won't miss a minute of Army lacrosse action if they take the lead and follow @Army_Lacrosse on Twitter, a feed that provides in-game score updates, links to feature stories and more. In addition, fans can follow head coach Joe Alberici at the handle @ArmyLaxCoach.

ARMY ON T.V.
Army lacrosse fans have had the opportunity to watch the Black Knights on national television twice so far this spring. Thanks to an extensive Patriot League television package, the highly anticipated 92nd meeting between Army and Navy, the Black Knights' Easter Sunday visit to Colgate and Army's regular-season home finale against perennial powerhouse Johns Hopkins are slated to air live on CBS Sports Network. In addition, the 2013 Patriot League Lacrosse Tournament will be carried by CBSSN in its entirety. Army has also had two games broadcast to a regional audience this season - at Syracuse (Time Warner Cable) and against Michigan (Sun Sports).

MARCH TO MICHIE
No matter what the turnout of the Patriot League Tournament, Army will celebrate the end of its regular season and Senior Night against perennial powerhouse Johns Hopkins on Friday, May 3, at Michie Stadium. Face-off is set for 7:36 p.m. on CBS Sports Network. In an attempt to set a Michie Stadium lacrosse attendance record, fans are encouraged to "March To Michie" to partake in a bevy of pre and in-game activities, along with watching two nationally ranked teams compete under the lights. The popular Black Knights Alley fan fest will open at 5:30 p.m. Visit www.goARMYsports.com for more game day details.

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