NEWMAC Championship Preview: No. 1 Coast Guard Welcomes No. 2 Springfield in Conference Final

NEWMAC Championship Preview: No. 1 Coast Guard Welcomes No. 2 Springfield in Conference Final

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NEW LONDON, Conn. – The top seeded Coast Guard men's lacrosse team will host second-seeded Springfield on Saturday, May 5 at 1 PM to play for the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Championship at Cadet Memorial Field.

THE MATCHUP: Springfield has won a total of 19 conference championships including the last 10. The all-time series sample is small with the Pride leading with a 3-1 record against the Bears which dates back to April 15, 2015. Springfield also won this year's regular season matchup on April 18, 2018 by a 11-8 score at the Academy. (BOX SCORE | RECAP)

SCOUTING COAST GUARD (ROSTER | SCHEDULE | STATS): In conference games, Coast Guard ranks second in goals (208), assists (118) and in goals per game (12.24). Their defense has been stout this season leading in caused turnovers (171) and second in ground balls (535).  The Bears defense is also 10th in the country in scoring defense (6.24). Coast Guard has wins over Wesleyan (10-9 OT), Babson (8-6), Merchant Marine (14-9) and two wins over MIT (7-2, 17-9) including a victory in Wednesday's semi-final.

Sophomore Riley McNulty has led the Coast Guard offense this season as he is first in points (70), second in goals (44) and third in assists (26). He is the Bears all-time leader in points (132) and goals (83) while averaging 4.00 points per game over his career.

Other players to keep an eye on are juniors Benner Geurtsen (26 G, 22 A, 48 P), Anthony Wyler (27 G, 10 A, 37 P) and freshman Will Iorio (24 G, 22 A, 48 P).

Coast Guard's mainstay this season has been their defense led by senior Alec Groff, juniors Connor Ellis, Mike McCaslin, Tom Bleifuss and sophomores Justin Edwards and Ryan Gochar. McCaslin (25) and Edwards (23) are 1-2 in the conference in caused turnovers while Bleifuss (19) is tied for sixth and Ellis (16) is tied for 11th. They have held 15 of 17 opponents to single digit goal totals this season.

Junior Goalie Trey Johnson leads the NEWMAC with a 6.55 goals-against average and 13 wins. His GAA is tied for 10th in Division III. He has career bests in goals allowed, GAA, wins saves and minutes played.

Junior FOGO Colin Cashin continues to be a consistent option for the Bears winning 61.9 percent of face-offs in conference play and is third in the NEWMAC with 88 ground balls.

SCOUTING SPRINGFIELD (ROSTER | SCHEDULE| STATS): Springfield leads the NEWMAC in goals (212), assists (138) and goals per game (12.47). The Pride have 10 straights NEWMAC titles and their only NEWMAC loss is to Babson this season. Springfield has wins over Union (6-2), Cortland (15-11), Endicott (8-7) and Babson (12-11 OT) in the NEWMAC semi-finals.

The Prides offense has been led by junior Jack Vail (23 G, 27 A, 50 P) and senior Tom Hurley (32 G, 17 A, 49 P). Vail is tied for first in assists with teammate sophomore Joe Hawley and third in the conference in points while Hurley is sixth in goals and eighth in assists.

Senior Chris Cunnington has led the Springfield defense with 51 ground balls and 20 caused turnovers while classmate Connor Eschmann has caused 21 turnovers. The Pride's defensive unit are second in the conference in caused turnovers (135) and is second in conference in goals allowed (47).

Veteran goalie senior Jake Reynolds has been a mainstay for Springfield as he is first in the conference in saves (176) with 13 double-digit save games including 20 saves against RIT and 21 against Amherst. He is fourth in the conference in goals-against average (9.67) and save percentage (54.0 %).

Sophomores Joseph Cameron (112-226) and Matt D'Andrea (59-139) have handled the face-off responsibilities combining for a 46.6 win percentage and 77 ground balls.

FINAL NOTES: Springfield has dominated the NEWMAC representing the conference in every NCAA tournament since its creation in 2014. Coast Guard enters their first NEWMAC Championship game looking to punch their ticket to the NCAA Tournament in only their fourth year as a varsity program.  

 

PARKING AND TICKET INFORMATION: In support of the NEWMAC Men's Lacrosse Championship game, a portion of Harriet Lane will be closed to all traffic beginning at 10:30 AM, until the conclusion of the game.

Harriet Lane will be closed between Bibb Street (south end zone of Cadet Memorial Field) and McCulloch Street (Michel Hall).

We encourage all Academy personnel to come out and support the Bears as they take on Springfield College for the title of NEWMAC Men's Lacrosse Champion!

Face-off is at 1 pm at Cadet Memorial Field. NEWMAC ticket pricing is as follows:

 

Adult - $5

Senior (65+) - $3

Student - $1

Kid (12 & under) - free

 

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