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UAlbany Men's Lacrosse Hosts UNC for NCAA First Round at Casey Stadium

UAlbany Sports Information   05-11-2017

ALBANY, N.Y. – 8-seed UAlbany men's lacrosse is set for its first NCAA Tournament home game in 10 years, hosting defending national champion North Carolina on Saturday, May 13th at 7:30 p.m. at Tom & Mary Casey Stadium.

Seating is still available but is limited.  Gold chairbacks are $20 while bleacher seats are $15 for adults and $10 for youth.  For ticket and parking information, visit ualbanysports.com/tickets or call the UAlbany ticket office directly at 518-442-DANE.

The game will be broadcast nationally on ESPNU and online on WatchESPN.  Chris Cotter and Paul Carcaterra will have the call live from Casey Stadium.

UAlbany is playing in its fifth NCAA Tournament in a row and ninth overall, earning an automatic qualifier with the America East Tournament title off a 20-8 victory over Binghamton.  UAlbany stands at 14-2 overall, the best record in Division I this year, and 6-0 in the America East.  North Carolina, playing in its 11th straight NCAA Tournament, defeated Notre Dame 14-10 on April 30th to win the ACC Tournament title, picking up an at-large berth into the NCAAs.  The Tar Heels come in at 8-7 overall and 1-3 in the ACC.

UAlbany is at its highest rankings of the season at #4 in each the USILA Coaches Poll and Inside Lacrosse Media Poll.  North Carolina is #10 in the coaches poll and #9 in the media poll.

This is the first-ever meeting between UAlbany and North Carolina.  Each team has played a program in the other's conference this year: UAlbany fell at Syracuse 10-9 while UNC has a 17-6 victory vs. UMBC.  Last year, UAlbany fell in the NCAA First Round at Syracuse 11-9.  UNC won the 2016 NCAA Tournament with a 14-13 overtime victory vs. Maryland in Philadelphia.

This is the first time since 2007 that UAlbany has hosted a home game in the NCAA Tournament, winning 19-10 vs. Loyola.

UALBANY - 2017 AMERICA EAST TOURNAMENT CHAMPION: UAlbany put together one of the most dominant tournament performances in league history, winning the 2017 America East Tournament by a combined score of 39-14, including a 20-8 victory over Binghamton.  Connor Fields was the Most Outstanding Performer with five goals and 11 assists combined in the two games.

FIELDS NAMED 2017 TEWAARATON FINALIST: Connor Fields was one of five male collegiate players to be named to a 2017 Tewaaraton Trophy nominee on May 11th.

UAlbany has had at least one Tewaaraton finalist four of the past five years.  Fields is earning a spot in the final five for the first time.

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 award ceremony for the men and women is in Washington D.C. on June 1st.

FIELDS - TOP SCORER IN DIVISION I: Connor Fields stands as the top scorer of Division I, averaging 6.75 points per game and third with 3.19 goals per game.  He currently totals 108 points off 51 goals and 57 assists.  He is also second in DI with 3.56 assists per game.

Three other UAlbany players stand with at least 26 goals, with Justin Reh having 39 plus 17 assists, Bennett Drake having 30 goals and Kyle McClancy having 26.

NEW STARTERS DOMINATING: UAlbany players entering starting roles for the first game are ranking among the top in Division I.  A first-year starting goalkeeper, JD Colarusso is 11th in DI with a 55.3% save rate, allowing just 8.64 goals per game and holding a 14-2 record.

Freshman faceoff man TD Ierlan is second in DI on the X at 72.2%, winning at least 70% in 11 games, and first with 11.44 ground balls per game.  At attack, freshman Jakob Patterson has 23 goals, including a pair of four-goal games.

UALBANY #4 IN COACHES POLL AND MEDIA POLL: In the week 13/postseason polls, UAlbany has risen to #4 in the USILA Coaches Poll and in the Inside Lacrosse Maverik Media Poll, tying its highest rankings since 2007.

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.

FIELDS APPROACHING TOP NCAA/UALBANY MARK: Connor Fields is approaching the top single season scoring mark in NCAA history, which is currently held by a former UAlbany player, Lyle Thompson.  Fields currently has 108 points, tied for ninth all-time in NCAA DI history.
1 - Lyle Thompson, UAlbany, 2014: 128 (51G, 77A)
2 - Lyle Thompson, UAlbany, 2015: 121 (52G, 69A)
3 - Miles Thompson, UAlbany, 2014: 119 (82G, 37A)
4 - Dylan Molloy, Brown, 2016: 116 (62G, 54A)
5 - Steve Marohl, UMBC, 1992: 114 (37G, 77A)
6 - Lyle Thompson, UAlbany, 2013: 113 (50G, 63A)
7 - Mike Rooney, Stony Brook, 2015: 111 (48G, 63A)
8 - John Grant, Delaware, 1999: 110 (56G, 54A)
t9 - Connor Fields, UAlbany, 2017: 108 (51G, 57A)

100-POINT WATCH: UAlbany comes into 2017 with just one 100-point scorer, but a number of others are approaching that mark.  Justin Reh and Bennett Drake joined the 100-point club this season.
--Connor Fields, Jr. A: 269 (161 G, 108 A)                    
--Justin Reh, Jr. A: 116 (66 G, 50 A)                              
--Bennett Drake, Sr. A/M: 106 (75 G, 31 A)                    

--Kyle McClancy, Jr. M: 75 (46 G, 29 A)

NEW YORK, NEW YORK: Home is where the heart is for UAlbany, drawing on the home state for most of its roster.  Of its 45-man roster, 31 players hail from New York State.

From the USA, other states represented on UAlbany's roster include Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, New Jersey, Ohio and Vermont.  The team also has four players from Canada.

The team's diversity is represented on its helmets.  Each UAlbany helmet has three flags on the back, representing the United States, Canada and the Iroquois Six Nations.

UALBANY NCAA TOURNAMENT HISTORY: UAlbany heads to the NCAA Tournament for the fifth straight year and ninth time in the Division I era, including the eighth time as an automatic qualifier.

The Great Danes have earned a spot in the NCAA quarterfinals two of the past three seasons with true road wins, and three times overall, with the third appearance coming in 2007.  The team earned its first at-large bid in program history in 2016 and first among America East teams since UMBC did in 2007.

Last year, UAlbany drew 8-seed Syracuse in the Carrier Dome and led by four at the half, but fell to the Orange 11-9.

All-time in the NCAA Tournament, UAlbany is 3-8 overall, including 3-5 in the first round and 1-0 at home.

UAlbany's last home game in the NCAA Tournament came in 2007, where the 5-seed Great Danes defeated Loyola 19-10 at John Fallon Field.  Current UAlbany assistant coach Merrick Thomson led the Great Danes with five goals in that game; current associate head coach Liam Gleason was starting on defense.

FOUR NAMED TO AE ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM: With a dominant performance to win the America East Tournament, UAlbany had four placed on the All-Tournament Team.

Connor Fields was selected as the Most Outstanding Performer.  Fields set an America East Tournament record with 11 combined assists, adding five goals for 16 points.  TD Ierlan was chosen to the All-Tournament Team.  UAlbany's primary face-off man was 82.7% at the X (43-for-52) with 28 ground balls. Kyle McClancy picked up a place on the All-Tournament Team, combining for six goals and two assists.  JD Colarusso notched both victories in goal, combining for 15 saves and 14 goals allowed, for his place on the All-Tournament Team.

JOSH EGAN EARNS AMERICA EAST ELITE 17 HONOR: Josh Egan was honored with the America East Elite 17 award for men's lacrosse.  The Elite 17 award is given to a player of junior or senior standing with the highest GPA in the conference championship game.  Egan, a junior midfielder, has a 3.96 GPA, majoring in business.

SCOUTING THE NORTH CAROLINA TAR HEELS: North Carolina has been in the NCAA Tournament all nine years under head coach Joe Breschi.

UNC's primary shooter is senior and Niskayuna graduate Luke Goldstock, an All-ACC attack with 30 goals and 13 assists.  Junior attack Chris Cloutier has a team-best 31 goals while sophomore Andy Matthews quarterbacks with 12 goals and 26 assists. 2016 All-American Stephen Kelly is the primary at the faceoff-X, winning 54.9% with 99 ground balls.

In goal is senior Brian Balkam with a 49.3% save rate and a 10.31 goals against average.  ACC Defensive Player of the Year Austin Pfiani has 21 caused turnovers while All-ACC SSDM Tate Jozokos has 39 ground balls.

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