LEWISBURG, Pa. – The No. 14 Bucknell men's lacrosse team closes non-conference play this week by traveling to No. 3 Yale and hosting Mount St. Mary's.
After facing off against the Bulldogs on Wednesday, April 4 at 7 p.m., the Bison return home for the first time in four games to take on the Mountaineers on Saturday, April 7 at 7 p.m.
Yale will be Bucknell's fifth ranked opponent of the 2018 campaign; the Bison are 3-1 against nationally ranked teams, with one of their victories coming at then No. 6 Loyola.
NOTICE: Due to the likelihood of inclement weather, Knoebels Amusement Park will now sponsor the Bison Fun Zone on Friday, April 20 from 6 to 8 p.m. in conjunction with the Bucknell's game against Lehigh.
Bucknell's game against Mount St. Mary's is part of a lacrosse double header at Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium. Before the Bison men take the field, the women will square off against Holy Cross at 1 p.m. As part of Community Day, Knoebels Amusement Park is set to sponsor a Bison Fun Zone, which will include an inflatable obstacle course, a bouncy house and more, from 2 to 7 p.m. While supplies last, fans will be treated to free pizza and drinks.
No. 14/14 Bucknell (7-3, 5-1 Patriot League) vs. No. 3/3 Yale (7-1, 3-0 Ivy League)
When: Wednesday, April 4 – 7 p.m.
Where: Reese Stadium – New Haven, Conn.
Internet Video: Ivy League Network ($)
Live Stats: YaleBulldogs.com
Follow on Twitter: @Bucknell_MLAX
Mount St. Mary's (3-7, 0-3 NEC) vs. No. 14/14 Bucknell (7-3, 5-1 Patriot League)
When: Saturday, April 7 – 7 p.m.
Where: Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium – Lewisburg, Pa.
Internet Video: Patriot League Network
Live Stats: BucknellBison.com
Follow on Twitter: @Bucknell_MLAX
Bucknell at a Glance
• The Bucknell men's lacrosse team is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2018. Established in 1968, the program has compiled a 367-349 all-time record with Sid Jamieson (1968-2005) and Frank Fedorjaka (2006-present) at the helm.
• The Bison are currently 7-3 (5-1 Patriot League) and have already clinched a spot in the Patriot League tournament with two games left in their league schedule. This week, they are slotted 14th in both the USILA Coaches' Poll and the Inside Lacrosse Maverik Media Listing.
• In 2017, Bucknell went 5-8 (3-5 Patriot League), coming up a single game short of qualifying for its 11th-straight Patriot League Tournament.
• The Bison, who finished tied for seventh in the Patriot League a year ago, were picked to place fourth in the 2018 preseason poll, as voted on by the league’s coaches and sports information directors.
• Bucknell returns four All-Patriot League selections in Matt Gilray (2nd '17, '16), Christian Klipstein (2nd '17, '16), Sean O'Brien (1st '17) and Will Sands (1st '17, 2nd '16). All four were voted to the 2018 Preseason All-Patriot League team, giving the Bison the league-high total.
• Sands was named to the 2018 Tewaaraton Watch List on March 1. The senior, who was previously recognized on the 2017 list, was one of 50 men's lacrosse players to make this year's iteration. He was also named a Midseason Third Team All-American by Inside Lacrosse on March 29.
• Bucknell's captains are seniors Sands, Gilray, O'Brien and Benny Borgognone.
• Fedorjaka, who is in his 13th season as head coach, owns a 118-73 record. In Patriot League action, he has gone 55-31, leading the Bison to perfect 6-0 records in 2009 and 2011.
Inside the Army West Point Box Score
• Then No. 16/18 Bucknell knocked off then No. 15/20 Army West Point, 10-7, on March 31 to clinch a spot in the 2018 Patriot League tournament and remain locked in a three-way tie for first with No. 15/17 Lehigh and Navy.
• After the Black Knights trimmed their deficit to 7-6 in the fourth quarter's first minute, the Bison scored three unanswered goals to put the game out of reach.
• During the third stanza, Reed Malas completed a hat trick in an eight-minute span to turn a 3-3 deadlock into a 6-4 Bucknell advantage. Malas, who also registered an assist, now has nine points (6g-3a) in the Bison's past two games, both victories over ranked foes.
• Malas and Will Sands (2g-2a) both recorded a game-best four points. Sands became the sixth Bison to net 100 career goals with his strike at the 44-second mark of the third quarter, which also gave Bucknell a 7-5 edge.
• In net, Christian Klipstein finished with nine saves, seven of which came in the first half. Bucknell's defense was exceptional, limiting Army to just nine shots in the second half, only two of which were on target
• Bryant Boswell tied face-off man Jarett Witzal for the team-high with five ground balls. Matt Gilray added three ground balls while Lukas Munoz led the Bison with two caused turnovers.
• Before this season, the Bison last won at least seven of their first 10 games in 2013. Then, they won eight of their first 10 games, rattling off a seven-game winning streak.
• Malas captured his first career Patriot League Offensive Player of the Week laurels on the strength of his performance against the Black Knights.
No. 3/3 Yale at a Glance
• Yale is currently 7-1 (3-0 Ivy League). The Bulldogs are on a seven-game winning streak, with four of their victories coming by four or more goals.
• This week, Yale was slotted third in both the USILA Coaches' Poll and Inside Lacrosse Maverik Media Listing. The Bulldogs will be Bucknell's second opponent that was ranked in the national top 10 at the time of their meeting.
• Yale posted a 10-6 (5-1 Ivy League) record in 2017. After winning their third-straight Ivy League Tournament title with a 10-9 win over Brown, the Bulldogs were edged by then No. 3 Syracuse, 11-10, in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
• Yale's .875 winning percentage ranks fourth in the country. The Bulldogs are a balanced team, as strong defensively as offensively; case in point: they rank 11th nationally in both scoring offense (12.13) and scoring defense (8.38).
• Senior attacker Ben Reeves is averaging a hat trick per game, which places him in a tie for sixth nationally. He is also eighth in points per game (5.25), one spot behind Will Sands (5.50).
• Senior face-off specialist Conor Mackie stands sixth in ground balls per game (9.00) and 15th in face-off winning percentage (.600) while senior defender Christopher Keating is locked in a tie for 10th in caused turnovers per game (2.00).
• This will be the first game between the Bison and Bulldogs. Earlier this year, Bucknell faced off against Richmond for the first time in program history.
Mount St. Mary's at a Glance
• Mount St. Mary's is currently 3-7 (0-3 NEC). After opening March with a pair of wins, the Mountaineers have lost their past three tilts.
• Mount St. Mary's went 4-10 (1-5 NEC) in 2017, failing to qualify for the NEC Tournament for the second-straight year.
• Brenden McCarthy (17g-15a) and Chris DiPretoro (24g-6a) are the only Mountaineers who have surpassed the 30-point threshold. A pair of freshmen, Luke Mutterer and Dylan Furnback, have split time in net, combining to make 88 saves.
• Bucknell leads the all-time series with Mount St. Mary's, 15-3. The series dates back to 1996, and the teams have faced off every year since 2013.
• In 2017, the Mountaineers downed the Bison, 12-10. Mount St. Mary's rallied back from an 8-4 halftime deficit, bolstered by a 6-1 third quarter, to move to 3-2 against Bucknell in their past five contests.
Enter Sandsman: Will Sands Among Nation's Elite Attackers
• Will Sands is on pace to have one of the best offensive seasons in Bucknell history. With four games left to play in the regular season, he already has 55 points (19g-36a).
• Sands's assist total is good for seventh in school history and is four outside of third. With three points, he'll enter the Bison's single-season top 10 in that category for the third time in his career.
• Sands is currently the national leader in assists (36) and ranked third in points (55). A member of the 2018 Tewaaraton Watch List and an Inside Lacrosse Midseason All-American, he has factored into 49.1 percent of Bucknell's goals, the highest percentage in the Division I ranks.
Bison in the NCAA Top 10 (as of April 3)
• Connor O'Hara: Tied for ninth in goals (28)
• Will Sands: First in assists (36)
• Will Sands: Second in assists per game (3.60)
• Will Sands: Third in points (55) - one of nine with 50
• Will Sands: Seventh in points per game (5.50)
• Goals: Connor O'Hara (28)
• Assists: Will Sands (36) - NCAA leader, only Bison above 10
• Points: Will Sands (55) - only Bison above 30
• Shots: Sean O'Brien (90) - only Bison above 65
• Ground balls: Jarett Witzal (34)
• Caused turnovers: Lukas Munoz (13)
• Face-off wins: Jarett Witzal (106)
• Face-off percentage: Jarett Witzal (.469)
• Save Percentage: Ben Clark (.562)
• Goals Against Average: Ben Clark (8.26)
• Saves: Christian Klipstein (73)
Single-Season Milestone Watch
• Sean O'Brien: Needs 19 shots to crack Bucknell's top five with 109
• Connor O'Hara: Needs nine goals to crack Bucknell's top 10 with 37
• Will Sands: Needs one assist to enter tie for fourth (37); needs four to enter tie for third (40); needs 12 to match school record (48)
• Will Sands: Needs three points to crack top 10 in points for third time (58); needs six to enter tie for ninth (61); needs 11 to vault into four-way tie for fourth (66)
• Jarett Witzal: Needs 20 face-off attempts to crack Bucknell's top five for second time with 246
• Jarett Witzal: Needs 24 face-off wins to crack Bucknell's top five for third time with 130
Career Milestones Met at Army West Point
• Matt Gilray: Claimed sole possession of ninth in career ground balls; now has 145
• Will Sands: Became sixth Bison to net 100 career goals; now has 101
• Will Sands: Cracked Bucknell’s top five in career shots; now has 281
Career Milestone Watch
• Matt Gilray: Needs one ground ball to move to eighth with 146; needs seven to climb into seventh with 152
• Christian Klipstein: Needs four saves to crack Bucknell’s top 10 (375); needs seven to enter tie for ninth (378); needs 60 to climb into tie for eighth (431)
• Sean O'Brien: Needs 22 shots to crack Bucknell’s top five with 281
• Will Sands: Needs two goals to enter tie for fifth with 103; needs 10 to enter tie for fourth with 111
• Will Sands: Needs 10 assists to move to third with 132; needs 16 to match Bucknell's school record of 138
• Will Sands: Needs 25 shots to enter tie for fourth with 306
• Jarett Witzal: Needs six ground balls to move to fourth with 166; needs 15 to climb to third with 175
• Jarett Witzal: Needs 10 face-off attempts to claim the school record from Jake Clarke (750)
• Jarett Witzal: Needs 15 face-off wins to claim the school record from Jake Clarke (422)
A Look Ahead
• The Bison resume Patriot League action by hosting Lafayette on Friday, April 13 at 7:30 p.m.