UVM Men’s Lacrosse Set for Matchup at Providence Saturday

The Vermont men’s lacrosse team continues play this weekend with a matchup at Providence on Saturday, February 21. Faceoff is scheduled for 1 p.m., and live stats of the game are available by clicking here.

The Catamounts are looking for their first win of 2015 after dropping tight contests to 14th-ranked Penn State and Colgate to open the campaign. UVM returns eight of its top 10 scorers from a season ago, and also added 19 newcomers to help bolster the squad.

James Barlow tops all Catamounts with seven goals on the season, as the junior tallied a career-high four scores last time out versus Colgate. The four-goal performance was Barlow’s second straight game with at least three scores and third of his career. Sophomore Ian MacKay ranks second on the squad with six points on four goals and a pair of assists. MacKay, last season’s conference rookie of the year, led Vermont with three tallies in the opener at Penn State. Karl Weller (3 pts.), Cam Milligan (3) and Dyson White (2) are the other Catamounts with multiple points through the first two games. Sophomore Luc LeBlanc owns a .583 percentage at X this season and leads the team with 13 ground balls, while classmate Ben Cox has led the defensive effort with 12 ground balls. Junior goalie Justin Rosenberg‘s posted a 12.50 goals against average and .468 save percentage in two starts in net.

Barlow set a new career-high with four goals against Colgate, but the Raiders edged Vermont by a final of 10-8 this past Saturday at Virtue Field. Three other Catamounts joined Barlow in posting multi-point efforts, including Weller (1 g, 1 ast), MacKay (1 g, 1 ast) and Milligan (2 ast). LeBlanc went 15-21 on faceoffs and combined with Cox to collect 15 ground balls in the contest. Rosenberg made a season-high 13 saves in net to help keep the Catamounts alive.

Following a pair of strong performances to open the campaign, Barlow is tied for first in America East in total goals (7) this season. MacKay ranks sixth in goals (4) and fourth in assists (2), while LeBlanc is second in America East in faceoff pct. (.583) and tied for first with 13 ground balls.

On the defensive side, Cox ranks right behind LeBlanc for the third-most ground balls (12) in the league, and Rosenberg tops all America East goalies in saves per game (11.00) while ranking second in both goals against average (12.50) and save pct. (.468).

In January, head coach Ryan Curtis announced that senior Andrew Buckanavage and junior Bryan Capone will captain the 2015 Catamounts.

Buckanavage enters his second season as a team captain after being voted into the role by his teammates last year. In addition to tallying the third-highest goal total on the squad in 2014, Buckanavage also registered multi-point efforts in six contests, including back-to-back three-goal performances to close out the season.

Capone, a junior defenseman, will look to anchor the back line again for the Catamounts in his third season with the program. In 2014, he made 12 appearances on defense and finished the season ranked third on the squad in caused turnovers (9). The Liverpool, New York native forced a season-high three caused turnovers against Providence, and picked up multiple ground balls in three different contests.

The Friars dropped a 10-6 decision in their season opener against Farifield and currently sit at 0-1 on the season. Greg FitzMaurice tallied a team-high three goals in the contest and also added one assist, while Will Mazzone notched one goal and a pair of assists. The Friars went just 6-19 on faceoffs, with Colin McKendrey and Thomas Laupus winning three apiece. Peter Badgley made 15 saves but took the loss in net.

Providence is coming off a 4-11 overall record and 1-5 mark in conference last season. The squad lost its top four scorers from 2014, but returns FitzMaurice and Nolan Fillet, who combined for 17 goals. Badgley, this year’s starting goalie, saw action in just two games last season and made 10 saves while allowing 15 goals. Providence was picked to finish last (sixth place) in the Big East Preseason Coaches’ Poll following a down year in 2014. Sophomore defenseman Jarrod Neumann was the lone Friar named to the preseason all-conference team.

The Catamounts own a 12-6 advantage over the Friars in the all-time series after winning 10 of the first 11 meetings between the two programs. Providence did however earn the victory in the matchup last season, claiming an 8-6 triumph over the Catamounts in Burlington.

The Catamounts return to Vermont to host Boston University in UVM’s second home game of the season on February 28 at 1:30 p.m.