By Matt Noonan
Saturday’s are always busy days in the lacrosse world, especially in Division 3. Tomorrow, though, should be a fun afternoon with a slew of conference tilts that’ll certainly feel like playoff contests.
Below are a few games to follow via Twitter or through live stats and video.
Emmanuel @ Lasell, 12 p.m.: Let’s start in the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) where Emmanuel College will travel to Newton to face-off against Lasell College. This is a de-facto conference regular season champion match with the winner securing the top spot for next week’s tournament. Both teams have won nine conference games, but neither unit has dropped a GNAC tilt.
Emmanuel (11-3, 9-0 GNAC) is riding an 11-game winning streak, thanks to their goaltender Austin Lauzier, who is fifth in the country in goals against average (5.88). Earlier this week, he was named the GNAC Goalie of the Week for his performance in back-to-back games against Becker College and Norwich University. Chris Baglivi was tabbed Rookie of the Week for his performance on defense. The Saints outscored the Cadets and Hawks, 19-7. Earlier this week, Emmanuel picked up its ninth conference win when they defeated St. Joe’s (Maine), 8-3. Michael Rogers recorded a hat trick in the win.
Lasell (10-4, 9-0 GNAC) hasn’t lost a game in April. The Lasers earned a 13-9 win against Anna Maria last Saturday on ‘Senior Day’ before defeating Daniel Webster on Wednesday, 20-7. Andrew Suh ranks fourth in the conference in assists (25), while goaltender David Walen is second in save percentage (64.5).
The Lasers have won their last two regular season meetings with the Saints, including a double-overtime victory in 2013.
MIT @ Wheaton, 1 p.m.: The last time the Engineers defeated the Lyons was the same year the Boston Red Sox won the World Series. Since April 25, 2007, Wheaton has defeated MIT each season.
Saturday’s clash, though, could determine potential seeding for the upcoming New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) tournament, which doesn’t begin until the end of April. MIT is currently in third place, two spots below Babson College and Springfield College, while Wheaton is sixth. Wheaton is coming off an exciting double-overtime victory against Massachusetts Maritime Academy on Wednesday evening. Brian Teague sealed the win for the Lyons with a strike at 3:17 in the second overtime period and Will Morrison scored a career-best four goals.
MIT’s Harris Stolzenberg leads the conference in goals (31), while Michael Traub is fourth with 26 strikes. Eric Bartell is first in the NEWMAC in saves with 145. His best outing occurred earlier this season when he deflected 16 shots in an 8-7 win over Emmanuel College.
This should be a back-and-fourth affair, so don’t expect either squad to run away following the initial face-off. Wheaton needs a win to keep its postseason hopes alive.
Wesleyan @ Tufts, 1 p.m.: Since falling to Williams College on April 1, the Jumbos have been on fire. Tufts rebounded with an 18-3 win against Hamilton College before defeating Endicott College, 18-13, in a back-and-fourth affair. The Jumbos extended its current winning streak to four-games by defeating Amherst College last Saturday, 25-12, and Bates College this week, 22-14.
Tufts’ final two contests, though, won’t be easy tasks. They’ll welcome the Cardinals of Wesleyan University to Medford tomorrow. Both teams enter the contest 7-1 in New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) play, and a win would provide the winner with the top seed heading into the conference tournament.
According to NCAA.com, the Jumbos lead all Division 3 offenses with 18.58 goals per game. Chris Schoenhut is fifth in the country in goals per game (3.67) and leads the Powder Blue and White with 51 tallies. John Uppgren leads the unit in points (77) with 40 goals and 37 assists, while Cole Bailey is second on the team in points (69). Beau Wood is currently third on the squad in points (62) with 43 tallies and 19 assists.
Wesleyan enters tomorrow’s contest on a three-game winning streak. They’re 4-1 on the road and recently defeated Bowdoin College, Trinity College and Williams.