Men’s Lacrosse Visits No. 19 Boston University for Midweek Clash

Photo courtesy of Penny Ashford
Photo courtesy of Penny Ashford

Game Info

Live Stats

Series Record
Last Meeting
Game Notes

Harvard vs. No. 16/19 BU
Tuesday, March 21
7 p.m.
Nickerson Field
Patriot League Network
Live Stats
Harvard (4-2, 0-1 Ivy)
BU (7-1, 2-1 Patriot)
Harvard leads, 5-1
L, 9-8
Harvard vs. BU

The Storyline
Harvard men's lacrosse takes a dip out of conference action to head to No. 16/19 Boston University Tuesday evening. The game is scheduled for 7 p.m. at Nickerson Field and will be broadcast live on the Patriot League Network.

What to Watch For
Morgan Cheek has registered 5.83 points per game, sitting second in the country. The junior also ranks No. 2 in goals per game (3.50) and ninth in the nation in assists per game (2.33).

• Four players have tallied hat tricks this season, Morgan Cheek (five times), Ryan Graff, Joe Lang and J.T. Palladino.  

• Junior goalie Robert Shaw made a career-high 21 saves in the 11-7 win over UMass and ranks third in the Ivy League with 12.33 saves per game. The netminder also ranks second in the Ancient Eight in save percentage at .561.

• The Crimson has started 4-0 in each of the last two seasons

• Cheek was named to the 2017 Tewaaraton Award Watch List, the pre-eminent lacrosse award that honors the top male and female college lacrosse player.

• Captaining the team this year will be midfielder Sean Coleman, defenseman Ryan Norton and long stick midfielder Matt Ryan.

Last Time Out
A strong first half led Brown past Harvard men's lacrosse, 13-8, Saturday afternoon at Stevenson-Pincince Field.

The Crimson was led by a hat trick from junior attack Morgan Cheek, his fifth of the year. The junior added two assists for a five-point game.

The Crimson ranks third in the Ivy League in goals against average, allowing 10.50 per game.  

Fresh Faces
Three rookies have earned starts this year, as Ryan Graff (six) and David Strupp (four) have seen major minutes in the rotation. Rookies account for 20 points. In total, 10 rookies have seen action this year.    

Back in Action 
The Crimson returns 27 letterwinners from a season ago and three players that started 10-plus games. Offensively, two of the top three point-getters are back. Starting goalie Robert Shaw returns between the pipes.  

That's a 10-4
A year ago, the Crimson's magic number was 10, posting an 8-2 record when reaching double-digit goals. Harvard was 0-6 when scoring nine goals or less. This season, Harvard is 4-1 when scoring 10-plus, the lone loss coming at the hands of No. 3 Penn State. The Crimson is 0-1 when scoring less than 10.

Home Field Advantage
Harvard is 33-15 at home under Chris Wojcik '96, The Frisbie Family Head Coach for Harvard Men's Lacrosse, including a 6-2 record over the last two years. The Crimson is 14-11 in Harvard Stadium with Wojcik at the helm, and boasts an 19-4 record at Jordan Field.

Hot Start

Harvard started 4-0 for the second-straight year, tying its best start since going 5-0 to begin the 2000 season. In the 126 years of the program's history, this marked only the sixth time that Harvard had started 4-0. The best start in program history came in 1961 when the team opened with a 10-0 start.  

Against Top Talent
Harvard has defeated 15 ranked opponents under head coach Chris Wojcik '96, including five wins over top-10 teams. The Crimson defeated three ranked teams last season. Harvard is 0-1 this season against ranked foes.

Just Cheeky
Junior Morgan Cheek returns for 2017 after scoring 36 goals and dishing out 24 assists for 60 points in 16 games a year ago. This year, Cheek owns 35 points on 21 goals and 14 assists, posting a 24-game point streak.

Scouting the Terriers
For the second-straight year, Boston University started out hot, posting a 7-0 record before falling to Bucknell, 12-6, Saturday. Cal Dearth and Jack Wilson pace the Terriers offensively, posting 24 and 22 points, respectively. In the goal, Christian Carson-Bannister has started all eight games, allowing just 7.24 goals per game and saving shots at a .636 percentage.

The inaugural head coach of the Terriers, Ryan Polley took the job in 2012 and roams the sideline for the fourth season in 2017. A season ago, the Terriers won a program-record eight games in 2016 and posted their first-ever winning season at 8-7 and received its highest-ever national ranking, reaching as high as No. 16 in both the USILA Coaches' Poll and the Cascade/Maverik Inside Lacrosse media poll.

Inside the Series – BU
2016 Record            8-7, 3-5 Patriot League
USILA Div. I Coaches Poll     16
Cascade/Maverik Media Poll          19
All-Time Series          Harvard leads, 5-1
Streak             L1
Last Harvard Win      9-8, 4/7/15
Last BU Win  9-8, 3/22/16


Tale of the Tape



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Now in Goal
Robert Shaw owns an 12-10 career record in goal, with three of his victories coming in overtime. The junior, who started every game a year ago, sports a .538 career save percentage while allowing 10.74 goals against. He made double-digit saves in 16 games and at least 15 saves in five games over his career.

NCAA Championships Host
The NCAA, Gillette Stadium and Harvard University announced that the 2017 and 2018 NCAA Men's Lacrosse Championships will be played at Gillette Stadium, the home of the National Football League's New England Patriots and Major League Soccer's New England Revolution. The Division I, II and III Men's Lacrosse Championships, as well as the Women's Lacrosse Division I Lacrosse Championships, will be played over Memorial Day Weekend, on May 27-29 in 2017 and on May 26-28 in 2018.

The agreement marks the fourth and fifth times the championships will be held at Gillette Stadium, where the event has enjoyed a history of tremendous success. In 2008, Gillette Stadium set attendance records for the Division I final (48,970) and the Division II and III finals (24,317).

Harvard has teamed with the NCAA several times in recent years to host NCAA championship events. In addition to hosting the 2008, 2009, and 2012 NCAA Men's Lacrosse Championships, Harvard served as host for the 2006 women's basketball Final Four at the TD Bank Garden, the 2010 fencing championships at Gordon Indoor Track, and the 2013 women's water polo championships at Blodgett Pool.

20-Plus Goal Scorers
Harvard boasted four goal scorers with 20-plus goals last season (Devin Dwyer, 40; Morgan Cheek, 36; Will Walker, 23; Joe Lang, 22). It marked the second-consecutive year that the Crimson completed the feat. Previously under Chris Wojcik '96, the Crimson had never had more than two goal scorers with 20-plus goals in a season.

Dwyer and Cheek were the first Crimson teammates to score 30-plus goals in a season since Jeff Cohen '12 and Dean Gibbons '11 scored 31 goals and 30 goals, respectively, in 2011.

In the Polls
Last season, the Crimson ranked as high as No. 8 in the Coaches Poll, its highest ranking since finishing the 1996 campaign ranked sixth. Head coach Chris Wojcik '96 captained that year's team to the quarterfinals of the NCAA tournament, earning All-America honorable mention and first team All-Ivy League accolades along the way. 

Working Overtime
The Crimson opened last season with three-straight overtime wins. Based on available information, this is only the second time in NCAA history that a team has won three-consecutive overtime games, matching Fairfield who completed the feat in 2012. Harvard has played a total of four overtime games this season, the most in program history. 

Preseason Honors
Joe Lang and Morgan Cheek were each named Inside Lacrosse Preseason All-Americans, tabbed as honorable mentions. Lang (first), Cheek and Coleman (second) were also named to the NEILA preseason teams.

In the Pros
Stephen Jahelka and Devin Dwyer were selected in the 2016 Major League Lacrosse Draft. The duo became the seventh and eighth players, respectively, drafted from Harvard entering their senior years.

Jahelka was selected in the second round, 14th overall, by the Denver Outlaws, matching Kevin Vaughn '12, who was also taken 14th overall by the Outlaws, for the highest draft slot by a Harvard student-athlete. Jahelka was traded to the New York Lizards in April. 

Dwyer was selected in the sixth round, 46th overall, by the Florida Launch. This marked the first time since 2012 that multiple Crimson were in the same draft class.

The duo joins former Harvard standouts Brian Fischer '15 (2015 draft 34th overall, Boston Cannons), Daniel Eipp '14 (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) in the MLL ranks.

Close Calls
Harvard is 14-17 in games decided by one goal under Chris Wojcik '96, The Frisbie Family Head Coach for Harvard Men's Lacrosse, including a 5-4 record in overtime.

Team USA
Associate head coach Ben DeLuca was named as the assistant general manager for the 2018 Men's National Lacrosse Team. The team will pursue a record 10th gold medal at the 2018 Federation of International Lacrosse (FIL) World Championship in Manchester, England. 

Howdy Myers Man of the Year
Bob Scalise, The John D. Nichols '53 Family Director of Athletics, was selected as the 2015 recipient of the Howdy Myers Man of the Year Award by the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association (USILA). The award is given to someone who has contributed to the game of lacrosse in a capacity over and above the normal efforts and in so doing, has shown unselfish and untiring devotion to the game. The award itself is named in honor of Howdy Myers, who coached 17 championship teams at St. Paul's, Johns Hopkins, and Hofstra and was inducted into the Lacrosse Hall of Fame in 1971. 

Scalise spent his playing days at Brown, where he received All-New England and All-Ivy honors. At Brown, Scalise also set an NCAA record of 11 goals in one game, a mark that still sits atop the record books today. Scalise became the head coach of the Harvard men's lacrosse team in 1975. Through 13 seasons he led the Crimson to a 98-77 overall record, one Ivy League championship, and the program's first NCAA tournament appearance. During his tenure, he coached 25 All-Americans and 39 All-Ivy League honorees. Scalise was appointed as Harvard's Athletic Director in 2001. Under Scalise, the Crimson has hosted three NCAA Lacrosse Championships at Gillette Stadium (2008, 2009, 2012). Scalise is the current chair of the NCAA Men's Lacrosse Rule Committee and a former member of the NCAA Men's Lacrosse Tournament Selection Committee. He was inducted into the US Lacrosse Eastern Massachusetts Hall of Fame on July 11, 2015.