Men's Lacrosse Takes To The Road to Face No. 3/3 Duke; Game Time Changed to 11 a.m.
Jahelka and the defensive unit will look to slow a potent Blue Devil attack (Gil Talbot).
The Harvard men's lacrosse team is headed south for the third time in as many weeks to face No. 3/3 Duke Saturday, March 29 at 11 a.m. The game will be simulcast on the Blue Devil Network and Ivy League Digital Network, giving Ivy Digital subscribers bonus coverage this weekend.
The game was originaly scheduled to begin at 12 p.m. but has been pushed up an hour due to forecasted weather in the area.
The Blue Devils are ranked No. 3 in the both the Warrior Div. I Media Poll and USILA Div. I Coaches Poll with an 8-2 overall record, 2-1 in ACC play. Duke will enter Saturday's contest riding a four-game winning streak, including a 21-7 victory last week over then No. 7/6 Syracuse in Durham.
The Blue Devils average 13.50 goals per game, the fifth-highest rate in the country, while allowing just 8.40 goals, the ninth-lowest rate. Jordan Wolf has paced the offense with 47 points on 31 goals and 16 assists, with Deemer Class (17g, 15a) and Josh Dionne (26g, 5a) adding 32 points and 31 points, respectively. Brendan Fowler has won 63.2 percent of the faceoffs he has taken, including a 24-of-31 performance last week versus the Orange.
Luke Aaron's 8.15 goals against average ranks ninth in the NCAA. The sophomore has stopped 57.2 percent of the shots he has faced on the year, while posting a 7-2 record between the pipes.
Inside the Series
Duke owns a 13-4 advantage in the all-time series and has won three straight games versus the Crimson. Last season, Harvard held a 10-8 edge on the Blue Devils midway through the fourth quarter, but the visitors used a 4-1 rally in the closing minutes to steal a victory at Harvard Stadium.
Harvard remains on the road next weekend as it travels to Ithaca, N.Y., to take on No. 2/2 Cornell. Faceoff from Schoellkopf Field is scheduled for 3 p.m. live on the Ivy League Digital Network.
Rank and File
Harvard is currently listed as receiving votes in both the Warriors Div. I Media Top 10 and the USILA Div. I Coaches Poll. The Crimson last appeared in the media poll the week of Feb. 26, 2012 when the media had the squad at No. 15, and in the coaches poll the week of March 5, 2012 when the coaches had the squad ranked No. 20.
Last Time Out
The Harvard men's lacrosse team overcame an early 2-0 deficit with seven unanswered goals and never looked back en route to a 16-7 victory over Dartmouth Saturday at Harvard Stadium.
The Crimson held on to a 7-3 halftime lead and outscored the Big Green, 9-4, including six fourth-quarter goals to seal the win. Harvard took advantage on four-of-six extra man opportunities, while the Crimson killed off all five of its penalties.
Ten different players scored for Harvard, including Will Walker with five tallies.
In the Spotlight
Harvard will play three games at Harvard Stadium in front of a national audience on ESPN3. The Crimson's games versus Dartmouth (March 22), Boston University (April 8) and Princeton (April 19) will be simulcast on ESPN3, the WatchESPN App and the Ivy League Digital Network as part of an agreement between ESPN and Harvard Athletics.
Ivy League Digital Network
For the first time ever, all of Harvard's home games and road Ivy League contests will be streamed in HD quality featuring a live scoreboard, new graphics package and play-by-play commentary through the Ivy League Digital Network. Subscribers to the network can watch games both live and On-Demand from their computers, tablets or smart phones, and will have access to live and On-Demand content for all Harvard events throughout the duration of their subscription.
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Light Up The Scoreboard
Harvard ranks 15th in the nation in scoring offense with an average of 12.00 goals per game. The Crimson has posted at least 10 goals six times this season, and currently boasts the fifth longest double-digit scoring streak in the country with five straight games scoring 10 or more goals.
Finding the Back of the Net
Will Walker scored a career-high five goals against Dartmouth, marking the most goals scored by a member of the Crimson since Jeff Cohen '12 tallied seven against Michigan on March 31, 2012. Walker leads Harvard with 18 goals this year and is second on the team in points with 20, with all 20 of his points coming in the last six games.
Devin Dwyer returned to the Crimson lineup at Georgetown after missing the team's first four games. In his first outing Dwyer set a career-high with five assists, and totaled five points on three goals and two assists in his second contest against Brown. The Crimson's leading scorer in 2013 as a freshman, Dwyer ranks third on the team with 17 points despite playing in just four games.
Player of the Week
Goalkeeper Jake Gambitsky was named Ivy League Player of the Week March 10 after leading Harvard to a 2-0 week with 30 saves between the pipes. The junior turned away 12 shots en route to a 10-8 victory over Quinnipiac to open the week. The 12 saves stood as his career high until Saturday afternoon when he registered 18 stops in the team's 15-7 win at Georgetown, marking the most saves by a member of the Crimson since Harry Krieger '13 made 19 on March 29, 2011 against UMass. The weekly honor marks the first of Gambitsky's career and the first for the Crimson since Krieger picked up the accolade on March 25 of last season.
Related Link: Gambitsky Named Ivy League Player of the Week
Turning Them Away
Jake Gambitsky has been solid in goal for the Crimson as his 9.65 goals against average ranks second in the Ivy League, while his .537 save percentage comes in at No. 1 in the conference. Gambitsky has recorded double-digit saves in six of Harvard's eight contests this season, and has already set a career high with five wins between the pipes.
Harvard's sophomore class has accounted for 60 percent of the Crimson's offense this season. The group has totaled 94 of the team's 156 points, led by Will Walker (18g, 2a), Devin Dwyer (4g, 13a), Sean Mahon (8g, 6a), Ian Ardrey (6g, 4a), Sean McDonagh (6g, 4a) and Brendan Newman (6g, 4a).
At the X
Gabriel Mendola had a career day at the faceoff X against Quinnipiac, winning 14-of-20 faceoffs while collecting six ground balls. Mendola also won 14-of-18 faceoffs against Brown, and is 53-96 at the X this season. The senior has won 56.2 percent of the faceoffs he has taken for his career.
Sophomores Deke Burns and Will Walker had breakout performances against Holy Cross as each turned in a hat trick. Burns totaled five points with four goals and one assist, with Walker registering four points on three goals and one assist. Burns entered the season having scored just five career points (1g, 4a) while Walker contributed 21 points (15g, 6a) as a freshman.
Point Scoring Streaks
Points During Streak
2014 Hat Tricks
Career Hat Tricks
Strength of Schedule
Eight of Harvard's 14 2014 opponents are currently ranked or receiving votes in either the Warrior Div. I Media Top 20 or the USILA Div. I Coaches Poll; Cornell (2/2), Duke (3/3), North Carolina (5/5), Yale (11/11), UMass (13/14), Princeton (14/15), Albany (15/13) and Penn (16/18).
Home Field Advantage
Harvard is 19-9 at home under Chris Wojcik '96, The Frisbie Family Head Coach for Harvard Men's Lacrosse. The Crimson is 8-7 in Harvard Stadium, and boasts an 11-2 record at Soldiers Field Lacrosse Stadium.