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#9/8 UAlbany Men's Lacrosse Begins America East Play at Vermont on Saturday

UAlbany Sports Information   03-16-2017

BURLINGTON, Vt. – The UAlbany men’s lacrosse team is set to begin America East play this weekend, heading north to Burlington to take on Vermont at Virtue Field on Saturday, March 18th at 1 p.m.

The game will be broadcast online on AmericaEast.tv.

Each team is playing in its America East opener.  UAlbany is playing its first game in almost two weeks, with its scheduled March 11th game against Maryland postponed due to weather.  The Great Danes have won three straight and stand 3-1 overall.  Vermont snapped a three-game losing streak with an 11-10 victory over Sacred Heart on March 11th, coming in at 4-3 overall.

After the two wins last week, UAlbany stood at #9 in the USILA Coaches Poll this week and rose up to #8 in the Inside Lacrosse Media Poll.  Vermont is not ranked in either poll.

UAlbany has won five in a row against Vermont, defeating the Catamounts 13-7 at home on April 9, 2016.  All-time, UAlbany is 14-3 against Vermont, winning all but one contest since 2002.  Vermont's last win in the series came in 2011, an 11-6 victory in Burlington.

UALBANY PREDICTED TO FINISH FIRST IN AMERICA EAST IN '17: For the fifth season in a row, UAlbany has been predicted to finish first in the America East in the preseason coaches poll.  It is the fourth season in the last five that UAlbany was a unanimous pick to finish first.  UAlbany is undefeated in America East regular season play since the start of 2013.  The rest of the poll is filled out by, in order, Hartford, Vermont, Stony Brook, UMBC, UMass Lowell and Binghamton.

FIELDS - TOP SCORER IN DIVISION I: Through the first couple weeks of the season, Connor Fields stands as the top scorer of Division I, averaging 7.5 points per game.  He currently totals 30 points off 14 goals and 16 assists.  He is third in goals per game and first in assists per game.

Also on the offense, Bennett Drake is 29th in all of DI, and sixth in the America East, with 2.5 goals per game, totaling 10.

FIELDS NAMED TO TEWAARATON WATCH LIST: Connor Fields was one of 50 collegiate players to be named to the 2017 Tewaaraton Watch List on February 28th.

UAlbany has had at least one player on the watch list each of the past 11 years.  Fields is earning a spot on the watch list for the second year running and his first time on the original 50.

The Tewaaraton Trophy is given to the top player in college lacrosse.  On the men’s side, UAlbany’s Miles and Lyle Thompson shared the 2014 Tewaaraton Trophy, with Lyle winning it outright in 2015.  The list will be narrowed to 25 nominees on April 27th.

UALBANY - LONGEST CONFERENCE WINNING STREAK IN DI: With four consecutive undefeated regular seasons, UAlbany has the longest active winning streak in conference games with 22, dating back the last four years.

UAlbany is the only DI team to go undefeated in league play in 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016.  Three schools, UAlbany and Denver, had undefeated conference regular seasons each of the past three years.

UAlbany formerly had a streak of 28 victories against America East opponents until May 5, 2016 after a 11-10 overtime defeat to Hartford in the America East Tournament semifinal round. 

Active Conference Winning Streak (games as of 3/16/17)
1 - UAlbany, 22 (America East 2013-16)
2 - Denver, 16 (Big East 2014-16)
3 - Quinnipiac, 9 (MAAC, 2015-16)

NEW STARTERS DOMINATING: UAlbany players entering starting roles for the first game are ranking among the top in Division I.

Stepping into the cage for the first time as a starter, JD Colarusso is fourth in DI with a 63.1% save rate, allowing just 8.03 goals per game.

Freshman faceoff man TD Ierlan is 12th in DI on the X at 61.9%, winning at least 70% in three games, and fifth with nine ground balls per game.

UALBANY #9 IN COACHES POLL, #8 IN MEDIA POLL: In the week five polls of the season, UAlbany held #9 in the USILA Coaches Poll and went up four spots to #8 in the Inside Lacrosse Cascade/Maverik Media Poll.

UAlbany has been in the top-15 of each poll since the start of the season.  The Great Danes have been ranked in the top-16 of both polls each week since May 2, 2014.

In the preseason, UAlbany was #13 in the coaches poll and #13 in the media poll.  It is the fourth consecutive year that UAlbany has ranked in the top-13 in the preseason.

SCOUTING THE VERMONT CATAMOUNTS: Vermont is led by first-year head coach Chris Feifs, former defensive coordinator at UNC.

Freshman attack Ben French leads the offense with 20 goals, the most in the America East, adding eight assists.  Senior attack Cam Milligan quarterbacks the offense with 15 goals and 12 assists while sophomore Dawes Milchling has 11 goals.

The primary goalkeeper is freshman Nick Washuta, who has a 54.2% save rate and a 10.24 goals allowed average.  Junior James Leary is his primary defender with a team-best 11 caused turnovers, adding 19 ground balls.

At the faceoff-X is freshman Charlie Erdmann, winning 59.7%.

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