March 5, 2009

Courtesy of Cornell

THE MATCHUP — No. 4/4 Cornell will travel to Virginia this weekend to take on the No. 1 Cavaliers on Sunday, March 8 at Kloskner Stadium at 2:30 p.m. The Big Red opened the season with victories over Binghamton and Army to improve to 2-0 on the year. Virginia is currently 6-0 on the season with its best win coming last weekend against No. 2 Syracuse when it defeated the Orange, 13-12.  
SERIES HISTORY VS. VIRGINIA — Despite being two of the oldest lacrosse teams in the nation, Cornell and Virginia have met just six times, and only one of those meetings has occurred during the regular season. The Cavaliers, who own the 4-2 record in the series, defeated Cornell, 10-9, in the first meeting in 1971 at Virginia. The teams met again in the 1974 NCAA tournament, with the Big Red taking the commanding 15-8 victory. It would be five years before the teams squared off again, also in the NCAA tournament, but this time the Cavaliers took the 15-8 victory. Virginia managed two more wins in the 1980 (9-8 in overtime) and 2002 (11-10) NCAA tournaments, while Cornell used a 19-6 victory over the Cavaliers in the 1988 NCAA tournament to propel into the national championship game.
LOOKING AT THE CAVALIERS — Virginia became the unanimous No. 1 team in the nation when it defeated Syracuse last weekend, 13-12, at the Carrier Dome to improve to 6-0 on the season. The Cavaliers are led by Garrett Billings, who ranks first on the team with 19 goals and 28 assists and is second overall with nine assists. Danny Glading has handed out a team-best 12 assists, while adding 10 goals, and Steele Stanwick and Brian Carroll have 11 goals apiece. As a team, Virginia is winning over 60 percent of its face-offs, with Chad Gaudet taking the majority of restarts (59-of-13, .573). In goal, sophomore Adam Ghitelman has made five starts and has posted a 6.85 goals-against average and a .568 save percentage.
THE LAST TIME VS. VIRGINIA — Virginia attackman Conor Gill set an NCAA tournament record with nine assists, but it was the lone goal that Gill didn’t take part in that sent No. 3 Virginia to the Final Four. Following a furious rally that led No. 6 Cornell back from an 8-3 deficit, freshman Joe Yevoli found classmate John Christmas on the doorstep for the final goal of an 11-10 win for Virginia. Cornell had two chances to even the score after Christmas’ lone goal of the contest. An errant pass that nearly deflected off a Virginia stick ended one Cornell possession with about one minute remaining. The Big Red then forced the Cavaliers out of bounds with 38 seconds left, setting up a final opportunity. Senior Scott Lee took a pass from classmate Galen Beers five yards in front of the goal, but a stick check by David Berman knocked the ball free and Virginia was able run the clock out. Chris Rotelli gave Virginia an 8-3 lead three minutes into the second half. In the span of 1:02, Cornell chopped the deficit to two goals, as Lee, Ian Rosenberger and Ryan McClay scored consecutively. The third came off a faceoff victory by Addison Sollog, one of 16 that he won. After a J.P. Schalk goal was answered by one from Rotelli in the opening minutes of the fourth quarter, Billy Fort scored a pair of unanswered, unassisted tallies to give Cornell its first tie since early in the second quarter. After scoring his first on a quick spin and low shot, Fort picked up a ground ball that had taken a weird bounce and fired another low shot past Virginia’s goalie Tillman Johnson. Rotelli scored a deep shot to open up an 10-9 lead, but Sean Greenhalgh evened the score at 10-10 when he fired a bouncer past Johnson despite being knocked to the ground. The tally was his 39th goal of the season, setting the rookie-record for Cornell, but it was also Cornell’s final tally of the 2002 campaign.

CORNELL VS. THE ACC – Cornell is 12-23 all-time vs. the current members of the ACC, thanks mostly to a 2-13 record vs. Maryland. The Big Red holds a winning record vs. Duke (4-3) and North Carolina (4-3) but has a losing mark vs. the Terrapins and Virginia (2-4) … Coach Tambroni is 2-5 vs. the ACC, with both victories coming vs. Duke.
• narrow Virginia’s lead in the series history to a single game, as Cornell would move to 3-4 against the Cavaliers.
• improve Cornell to 12-24 vs. ACC opponents.
• be the Big Red’s first win over a No. 1 team since defeating Syracuse, 15-11, on April 9, 2002.
AT THE HELM — In his ninth season as head coach of the Big Red, Jeff Tambroni owns a career record of 86-30. His winning percentage of .741 is the second-best among the nine coaches who have served as head coach at Cornell, ahead of the legendary Richie Moran (.680) and behind the all-time leader Ned Harkness (.972).
TAMBRONI AMONG THE BEST — Head coach Jeff Tambroni currently ranks fourth in the nation among active Division I coaches with a .741 winning percentage. Georgetown head coach David Urick is the nation’s leader (.751).
LONG OVERDUE – Cornell has not played a team with the No. 1 ranking since defeating Syracuse, 15-11, on April 9, 2002.
TURN OF THE CENTURY – With his two goals and one assist vs. Hobart last season, Max Seibald became the 34th player in Cornell history to register 100 career points. In the second game of the season, John Glynn joined Seibald when his one goal and two assists against Army gave the senior 101 points for his career.
TEAM USA – US Lacrosse has announced that five players with Cornell ties – Ryan McClay ’03, Mitch Belisle ’07, Matt McMonagle ’07, John Glynn ’09 and Max Seibald ’09 - have been selected to try out for the 2010 U.S. men's lacrosse team that will compete in the Federation of International Lacrosse (FIL) World Championship in Manchester, England from July 10-24, 2010. The tryouts will be held from June 7-10, 2009 at Bryant University in Smithfield, R.I.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK – Senior John Glynn earned the first Ivy League Player of the Week honor of his career following his stellar effort in No. 4 Cornell’s 9-8 victory over Army on Feb. 28. Glynn became the 35th player in Cornell history to register 100 career points when he tallied one goal and two assists against the Black Knights at Michie Stadium. The senior midfielder also won 10-of-17 face-offs and picked up a game-high seven ground balls. Glynn was clutch late in the game, scoring Cornell’s eighth goal of the contest before assisting on Max Seibald’s game-winner with 1:00 to play. Glynn then won the crucial en suing face off, allowing the Big Red to run out the clock for the victory.
TEWAARATON WATCH – The Tewaaraton Award Foundation has announced its spring 2009 men's lacrosse preseason Watch List and Cornell has placed four student-athletes on the list as John Glynn, Ryan Hurley, Matt Moyer and Max Seibald (Hewlett, N.Y.) have all been named to the list.
MAY I ASSIST YOU – Through the first two games of the 2009 season, the Big Red has assisted on 20-of-27 goals (74.0 percent). Last season, Cornell managed to assist on just 95-of-167 goals (56.9 percent).
A LITTLE HELP – Cornell ranks first in the country in assists per game (10.0 apg).
SINGLE-DIGIT SUCCESS – When holding its opponents to less than 10 goals, the Big Red was a perfect 10-0 last season. Including its most recent 9-8 victory over Army, Cornell has won 15 straight games when holding opponents to single digits, dating back to April 1, 2006, when it lost an 8-6 decision to Penn at Franklin Field.
FINISHING STRONG – Cornell has won 25 straight contests when leading at the half, dating back to the team’s 8-6 loss to Penn on April 1, 2006.
NON-CONFERENCE WINS — With its win against Army on Feb. 28, Cornell improved to 23-3 in its last 26 regular-season non-conference games, dating back to the Big Red’s 16-14 victory over Syracuse in the Carrier Dome on April 12, 2005. Two of those three losses during that span came at the hands of the Orange (2006, 2008), while the other came when No. 7/8 North Carolina beat Cornell, 13-8 at Fetzer Field on March 2, 2008.
HELPING HAND – Rob Pannell is currently ranked third in the country and first in the Ivy League in assists per game (3.00 apg).
GET TO THE POINT — Rob Pannell is currently ranked third in the country and tied for first in the Ivy League in points per game (5.00 pgp), while Ryan Hurley ranks 19th in the nation and fifth in the Ivy League (4.00 pgp).
SCORING MACHINE – Ryan Hurley is ranked 15th in the country and third in the Ivy League with 3.00 goals per game.
GROUND BALL GOBBLER – John Glynn is ranked 18th in the country and second in the Ivy League with 5.50 ground balls per game.
SENIOR STOPPER – Kyle Harer is ranked fourth in the country in goals-against average (6.46) and is eighth overall in save percentage (.629).
MAN IN THE MIDDLE – John Glynn is currently sixth in the nation with a .667 face off win percentage. Overall, Cornell ranks 11th in the nation in face off win percentage (.571).
(BIG) RED HOT OFFENSE – The Big Red is 13th in the country and second in the Ivy League in scoring offense, averaging 13.50 goals per game.
LOCK DOWN DEFENSE — Cornell ranks sixth in the country and is tied for second in the Ivy League in scoring defense, allowing only 7.00 goals per game.
MAN DOWN DEFENSE – The Big Red is currently 15th in the country and first in the Ivy League in man down defense, killing off .750 percent of the opponents penalties.
IN THE MARGIN — Cornell ranks fifth in the country in scoring margin, outscoring its opponents by an average of 6.50 goals per game.
FRESH START - In his very first collegiate game against Binghamton, freshman Rob Pannell scored three goals and registered four assists for seven total points. With that performance, he set a Cornell record for assists by a freshman in a single-game, surpassing Pat Dutton (three assists vs. Delaware in 1996) and Max Seibald (three assists vs. Binghamton in 2006). He also matched the school mark for points by a rookie in a single-game, tying Michael Egan who registered five goals and two assists for seven points against Penn in 2000.
HOME IS WHERE THE WINS ARE — During Coach Tambroni’s tenure, the Big Red is 45-10 at Schoellkopf Field, including a perfect 7-0 record in 2007 and a 6-0 slate during the 2005 season. Cornell finished the 2008 season with a 6-2 record at Schoellkopf Field.
ELITE COMPANY – Over the past six seasons, Cornell has been among the best in the nation, boasting the highest winning percentage of all Division I teams during that span (.787) and ranking fifth overall in number of victories (59).
GOING STREAKING – As of Thursday, March 5, Cornell senior Max Seibald owned the longest point-scoring streak on the team and the third-longest in the nation, having registered at least one point in the last 36 games dating back to Cornell’s 4-3 victory over Princeton on April 22, 2006. Junior Ryan Hurley is also on the list, owning the 11th-longest streak in the nation, registering at least one point in the last 17 games dating back to the 2008 season opener.
SAVES A LOT - Last year, Cornell goalie Jake Myers posted a season-high 14 saves against Syracuse on April 8, 2008. In the very first game of the 2009 season the goalie tandem of Kyle Harer and Mat Martinez combined for 15 saves, with Harer stopping 10 shots in 51:51 before Martinez made five saves in the final 8:09 against Binghamton.
85 WINS — With the Big Red’s 18-6 victory over Binghamton on Feb. 21, 2009, head coach Jeff Tambroni notched his 85th career win, becoming just the second head coach in Cornell men’s lacrosse history to reach that plateau. Tambroni reached the milestone in his 115th career game during his ninth season. The only other Big Red coach to reach 85 wins was Richie Moran, who defeated Harvard, 21-7, in his eighth season (1976) to achieve an 85-14 record.
GEOGRAPHY LESSON – The 45 players on the Big Red roster hail from 14 different states – California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia and Washington – as well as the District of Columbia and two Canadian provinces – Ontario and British Columbia.
OH CAPTAIN, MY CAPTAIN – For just the second time since 1966, the Big Red will have a single team captain, as Max Seibald will lead Cornell for the second straight year.
HARD HAT – Attackman Ryan Hurley has been selected to carry the Hard Hat for the 2009 season. The tradition of the Hard Hat began in the fall of 1999. Midway through the fall season, a player is selected to carry the Hard Hat for the year. The recipient is someone that the coaches feel demonstrates a blue-collar approach to the game of lacrosse; he is driven and selfless, not the most talented player on the field, but consistently the hardest worker. He puts the team first, and embodies how the coaches want Cornell players to act and respond on or off the field.
FOR STARTERS - Cornell is 59-50-5 all-time in season openers, including a 7-2 mark during Coach Jeff Tambroni’s tenure.
BACK ON THE OFFENSIVE – Players on the 2009 roster accounted for 221 of the 262 points (84 percent) that the Big Red registered last season.
FIVE IS RARE — When Cornell dropped a 13-8 decision to No. 7/8 UNC on March 2, it was the largest margin of defeat since the Big Red dropped a 14-4 decision to Georgetown during the 2004 season. Just over one month later, Cornell fell to No. 1 Syracuse, 15-8, the most lopsided victory in the series since 1997. During Coach Tambroni’s career (116 games), Cornell has lost by five or more goals only eight times.
CHAMPIONSHIP LINEAGE – Three players currently on the Cornell roster have fathers that have won a national championship with the Big Red – David Lau (George ’78), Julian Levine (Jon ’76) and Shane O’Neill (John ’76). George Lau was a two-time winner as part of both the 1976 and 1977 national championship squads, while Jon Levine and John O’Neill joined him on the 1976 team.
CLOSE CALLS — Since the beginning of the 2003 season, Cornell is 19-4 in games that have been decided by a single goal, a mark that was raised as the Big Red defeated Army, 9-8 Feb. 28, 2009, at Michie Stadium. The only blemishes during the stretch were a 6-5 loss to Navy in the 2004 NCAA quarterfinals, a 12-11 loss to Syracuse on April 11, 2006, a 10-9 loss to UMass in the opening round of the NCAA tournament on May 13, 2006 and a 12-11 loss to Duke in the national semifinal on May 26, 2007. Coach Jeff Tambroni is 22-10 in one-goal games during his tenure with the Big Red, including a 6-2 mark in overtime games.
BACK-TO-BACK – The Big Red has not lost back-to-back games since the 2002 season when Cornell fell to Princeton and Brown on consecutive weekends, a span of 91 games.
WIN NO. 650 – Cornell’s 16-11 victory over Dartmouth on April 12, 2008 was the 650th win in program history. To date, the team’s 654 victories rank seventh all-time among the winningest programs in collegiate lacrosse.
PRESASON POLLS – The Big Red was selected to finish fourth in the nation in both the Inside Lacrosse and USILA Coaches Preseason polls, the highest selection among all Ivy League schools.
11-WINS – The Big Red has posted at least 11 wins in each of the past four seasons and five times overall during head coach Jeff Tambroni’s eight-year tenure.
SIXTH SENSE — Cornell’s six consecutive regular season Ivy League titles is the longest current stretch by any team in any conference.
NEUTRAL ZONE – Since the start of the 2006 season, the Big Red is 6-1 in neutral site games, with two victories over Notre Dame (Chicago, 2006 and Long Island, 2007), a single victory over Albany (Princeton, 2007), Navy (Long Island, 2008), Denver (Dallas, Texas) and Harvard (Foxborough, Mass.). The lone loss came at the hands of Duke in the 2007 national semifinal (Baltimore, Md.).
SMARTY PANTS – Cornell has had eight CoSIDA Academic At-Large All-Americans, including seven during Coach Tambroni’s tenure, as David Key ‘01, Tim DeBlois ’04 and Casey Stevenson ’05 were named to the 2001, 2004 and 2005 second-team, respectively, while Mitch Belisle ’07 and Mitch McMonagle ’07 earned first-team honors in 2007. Unlike other Academic All-America teams in which the selections are all from the same sport, the At-Large men’s team is highly competitive as it is comprised of athletes from fencing, golf, gymnastics, ice hockey, lacrosse, rifle, skiing, swimming, tennis, volleyball, water polo and wrestling. To be eligible, a student-athlete must be a varsity starter or key reserve, maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.20 on a scale of 4.00, have reached sophomore athletic and academic standings at his/her current institution and be nominated by his/her sports information director.
RECAPPING 2008 — The No. 7/8 Big Red finished the 2008 season with an 11-4 overall record and its sixth straight Ivy League title with a mark of 5-1 in the conference. Cornell advanced to the NCAA tournament for the fifth straight season and finished the year ranking in the top 10 in the nation in face-off winning percentage (third - .610 pct.), scoring offense (eighth - 11.13 gpg.), win percentage (eighth – .733 pct.) and scoring margin (ninth – 2.60 gpg.).
SIX OF ONE … — With its victory over Brown on April 26, 2008 the Big Red claimed at least a share of the Ivy League title for the sixth straight season, the longest stretch since winning 10 straight championships between 1974-83.
EVERYBODY’S ALL-AMERICAN – For the second straight season, midfielder Max Seibald was named a first-team All-American. Joining Seibald on the 2008 All-American teams were John Glynn (second), Ryan Hurley (honorable mention) and Matt Moyer (honorable mention). The Big Red has placed at least four members on the All-American teams for each of the past four seasons.
TICKLE THE (ALL) IVY – Following the 2008 season, four members of the Big Red – John Glynn, Ryan Hurley, Matt Moyer and Max Seibald – were named first-team All-Ivy, while two others – John Espey and Nick Gradinger – garnered honorable mention selections. Of the four first-team selections, Glynn, Hurley and Seibald were unanimous choices by the league’s coaches.
SOPHOMORE STANDOUT – In his first season as a starter, Ryan Hurley proved to be one of the great young offensive threats in Big Red history. His 60 points on the season were the most by a Cornell sophomore since Eamon McEneaney tallied 96 points in 1975. Other than McEneaney, the only other sophomore in Cornell history to register more points than Hurley did during the 2008 season was Mike French (94 in 1974). In recent years, the only sophomore that has come close to matching Hurley’s output was Sean Greenhalgh, who tallied 46 points in 2003.
CONFERENCE WINS — Cornell had a 14-game Ivy League winning-streak snapped after losing to Princeton on April 21, 2008. The 14 consecutive victories was the second-longest stretch in school history behind only its NCAA record 39-game streak from 1973-79. The 14 straight wins was also the longest active conference winning streak in the nation at the time that it ended.
UP NEXT – The Big Red opens the home portion of its schedule this week as it plays host to Canisius on Tuesday, March 10 at Schollkopf Field at 4:00 p.m.