Men's Lacrosse Opens 2018 with UMass Lowell, Holy Cross

Photo by Gil Talbot
Photo by Gil Talbot
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Matchup
Date
Time
Venue
Live Stats
Video
Talent
Series
Last Time
Streak 
Notes

Harvard vs. UMass Lowell
Feb. 17, 2018
           3 p.m.
Jordan Field
Click Here
 Ivy League Network
Andy Towne, AJ Kanell
Harvard leads, 1-0
W, 14-9 (Feb. 18, 2017)
W1
Harvard vs. UMass Lowell (PDF)

Matchup
Date
Time
Venue
Live Stats
Video
Talent
Series
Last Time
Streak 
Notes

Harvard vs. Holy Cross
Feb. 20, 2018
            4 p.m.
Jordan Field
Click Here
Ivy League Network
Alex Vispoli, Dylan Hornblum
Harvard leads, 34-0
W, 12-9 (Feb. 21, 2017)
W34
Harvard vs. Holy Cross (PDF)


The Storyline
The Harvard men's lacrosse team opens its 2018 schedule at Jordan Field, when it welcomes UMass Lowell Saturday, Feb. 17 at 3 p.m and Holy Cross Tuesday, Feb. 20 at 4 p.m. They will be broadcast on the Ivy League Network.

What to Watch For
Morgan Cheek ranked seventh nationally a year ago with 5.15 points per game, and ninth in the cournty with 2.85 goals and 2.31 assists per game. Cheek is 10 assists and 19 goals away from breaking into the top 10 in program history in both categories, and 16 points shy of the top-10 for total points.

• Senior goalie Robert Shaw was one of the top netminders in the Ivy League a year ago, as he ranked second in save percentage at 52.6%, just 0.6% behind the Ivy lead.

• Harvard won its first four non-conference battles a year ago, including season-opening wins over UMass Lowell and Holy Cross, 14-9 and 12-9, respectively.

• Harvard has never fallen to UMass Lowell or Holy Cross in program history, as the team is 34-0 all-time against the Crusaders and 1-0 against the River Hawks.

Last Time Out
Behind six points from junior attack Morgan Cheek, Harvard men's lacrosse upset No. 11 Yale, breaking up the Bulldogs' undefeated Ivy season and capping Senior Day with a 9-8 win.

Cheek scored two goals and dished out four assists. Tim Edmonds and Ryan Graff each recorded hat tricks for the Crimson (6-7, 2-4). Robert Shaw stopped 19 shots, while Matt Ryan '17 caused three turnovers.

The Crimson outpaced the Bulldogs 7-4 over the final 30 minutes and came back after trailing by four three times.

Cheek-y Finish
Senior Morgan Cheek enters the season on a 31-game point streak that dates back to April 17, 2015. The stretch is the ninth-longest in the country, and the second-longest among Ivy League student-athletes. Over the 31-game span, Cheek has recorded 134 points on 78 goals and 56 assists.

Welcome, Welcome, Welcome!
Harvard added 10 freshmen to a talented roster as the class of 2021: Steven Cuccurullo, Bryn Evans, Brendan Forst, Jack Frisoli, Myles Hamm, Kyle Massimilian, Kyle Mullin, Charlie Olmert, Kyle Salvatore and Francesco Tangredi.

The class of 2021 joins a squad that tallied six wins in 2017, including a season-capping victory over national-ranked Yale. Harvard returns its top-12 point scorers from a year ago.

In the Back of the Net
Senior Morgan Cheek led five players with double-digit goal tallies in 2017, scoring 37 goals with a team-best 67 points. Sophomore Ryan Graff placed second on the team a year ago with 20 goals, while senior Joe Lang beat the goalie 19 times while dishing 10 assists.

Seniors Tim Edmonds and Carney Mahon totaled 15 and 11 goals, respectively, a year ago.

In total, Harvard returns an astounding 141 of 142 goals scored last year (99.3%).

Home Field Advantage
Harvard is 34-18 at home under Chris Wojcik '96, The Frisbie Family Head Coach for Harvard Men's Lacrosse, including a 7-4 record over the last two years. The Crimson is 15-14 in Harvard Stadium with Wojcik at the helm, and boasts a 19-4 record at Jordan Field.

Perfect 10
The Crimson's magic number is 10, posting a 13-5 record over the last two years when reaching double-digit goals. Harvard is 1-9 when scoring nine goals or less over that time. Last year, Harvard went 5-3 when scoring double-figures.

Scouting UMass Lowell
UMass Lowell is 1-0 in 2018 after picking up a 13-12 (OT) victory over Quinnipiac on Sunday, Feb. 11. Sean Tyrell led the effort with four goals and five points, while four other River Hawks tallied two scores apiece.

The River Hawks went 4-12 in 2017, including a 1-5 record in America East play. Harvard toppled UMass Lowell in 2017, 14-9, lef by a seven-point effort from Morgan Cheek.

Scouting Holy Cross
Holy Cross fell in its season opener to Providence, 9-6, in Providence on Saturday, Feb. 10. Six different Crusaders found the back of the net, while Logan LeBlond notched a pair of assists.

The Crusaders posted a 5-10 record a year ago, including a 4-4 record in Patriots League action. Harvard took last year's meeting, 12-9, led by five points from Morgan Cheek and two goals each from Sean Coleman and Nigel Andrews.

Metro Lacrosse

Hot Start
Harvard started 4-0 in 2017 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. 

NCAA Championships Host
The NCAA, Gillette Stadium and Harvard University announced that the 2018 NCAA Men's Lacrosse Championship 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 will be played over Memorial Day weekend, May 26-28.

The agreement, which inlcuded Harvard hosting the 2017 event, 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.

What's Next?
Harvard hits the road for the first time in 2017-18 when it heads to Massachusetts for a 1 p.m. face-off on Saturday, Feb. 24. The game will be broadcast on the UMass Sports Network.