COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State men’s lacrosse team (4-3) plays its first of two conference games in Connecticut this week when it faces Fairfield (3-2) at 7 p.m. Tuesday in Alumni Stadium in Fairfield, Conn. Ohio State wraps up the week with a game at Quinnipiac at noon Saturday in Hamden, Conn.
The game vs. the Stags is the first conference game for Ohio State as a member of the ECAC Lacrosse League and is the first of six-consecutive league contests. The ECAC regular-season champion receives the conference’s automatic bid into the NCAA tournament.
Links for live stats for the game at Fairfield can be found on the men’s lacrosse schedule page at OhioStateBuckeyes.com or FairfieldStags.com. A paid live webcast is scheduled through B2 Networks. Visit FairfieldStags.com or the link above for more information.
The Buckeyes are in a stretch of three games in eight days over spring break. The stretch started at Notre Dame last Saturday and includes the games vs. Fairfield Tuesday and Quinnipiac Saturday.
Last Time Out
Ohio State team lost in overtime at then-No. 9 Notre Dame, 7-6, last Saturday in Notre Dame, Ind. Seniors James Green and Mario Ventiquattro each had a hat trick to provide the scoring for the Buckeyes, while freshman goalie Ryan Brant had 10 saves in his first career start. The Buckeye defense, led by senior Scott Foreman, held the Irish attack scoreless.
Ohio State is 4-3 this year, with wins over Villanova, Detroit, Penn State and Albany. The squad is averaging 9.43 goals a game, while allowing 8.71.
Freshman Logan Schuss has a team-high 10 assists and 20 points this year. Senior James Green, with a season-best three goals and points at Notre Dame, now leads the team with 12 goals and ranks fourth with 13 points. Freshman Jeff Tundo was held scoreless for the first time in his collegiate career against Notre Dame but ranks second on the team with 11 goals and 15 points. Senior Mario Ventiquattro had a hat trick vs. the Irish for his third multiple-goal game of the season. He is tied for third on the team with 10 goals and ranks third with 14 points. Senior Brandon Freeman has started six games in goal and has 50 saves on 65 shots. Freshman Ryan Brant started the last game and made 10 saves on 17 shots. Freshman Trey Wilkes, who has a team-best 23 groundballs, has won 50 percent of his faceoffs and has taken the majority of draws for the team this year.
Buckeyes vs. Stags
Ohio State leads the series with Fairfield, 5-2, including a 2-1 mark in Fairfield. The squads met in Columbus last season, an 11-6 Buckeye victory Feb. 28. The teams competed against each other in the Great Western Lacrosse League from 2001-05 before the Stags left the conference to join the ECAC Lacrosse League. The series began in 2000 when the teams faced off while Fairfield was an independent program. Ohio State won that game, 9-8, in Columbus.
The Last Time
Led by four-point games from James Green and Mario Ventiquattro and 10 saves from Brandon Freeman, Ohio State beat Fairfield, 11-6, Feb. 28, 2009 inside the Woody Hayes Athletic Center.
Green had a hat trick and an assist, with Ventiquattro adding two goals and two assists. Joel Dalgarno had three points with three assists and Jeff Ryan had a hat trick. Brock Sorensen had two points, including his first career goal. The Buckeye defense limited Fairfield to just two goals in the second half, shutting the Stags out for 27:21.
Ohio State led 4-3 at the end of the first quarter and extended the lead to 7-4 at halftime on the strength of a three-goal run. The Buckeyes outscored the Stags 2-1 in both the third and fourth quarters for the 11-6 final.
Fairfield is 3-2 on the year and has won its last two games, downing Colgate on the road and Notre Dame in a neutral-site game in Houston, Texas, both by 10-8 scores. The squad also has a 5-3 win over Bryant this season and has lost games to Villanova (8-6) and Lafayette (15-10). The Stags average 8.20 goals a game, while allowing 8.4.
Sam Snow is first on the team with eight goals and 11 points, with John Snellman and Brent Adams second with five goals each. Matt Plominski, Max Trunz and Marshall Johnson each have four assists to lead the team. Joseph Marra has played all 300 minutes in the cage for the Stags and has 67 saves for a .615 save percentage.
Buckeyes Pick Up League Honors
A Buckeye has won league player of the week honors four times this year, including three rookie of the week accolades. Freshman Logan Schuss was honored March 1 and March 8 (co) and classmate Jeff Tundo earned the award March 15. Senior Mario Ventiquattro picked up ECAC Co-Offensive Player of the Week accolades March 8.
This week James Green and Scott Foreman were named to the ECAC Honor Roll following the overtime loss to Notre Dame.
The Buckeyes have held opponents to six and seven goals, respectively, in their last two outings. The squad is allowing 8.71 goals on the year. Through games of March 21, the Buckeyes rank 14th in the country in team defense.
Senior Scott Foreman has started the last 41 games for the Buckeyes. Freshmen Logan Schuss, Jeff Tundo and Dominique Alexander have started all seven games this season, joined by senior Mario Ventiquattro. Zach Rodgers made his first start as a Buckeye against Notre Dame. In net, Ryan Brant started his first collegiate game in the Scarlet and Gray Saturday vs. the Irish.
Seniors Mario Ventiquattro and James Green both marked their 75th career points vs. Detroit Feb. 27 and each now have 84 points as Buckeyes after hat tricks at Notre Dame. Ventiquattro has 62 goals and 22 assists, while Green has a 59-25-84 line at Ohio State. Green has played in a team-high 53 games for the Scarlet and Gray, starting 45.
Three Buckeyes have opened the year with at least one point in each of the first seven games – James Green, Mike Pires and Logan Schuss. Jeff Tundo had his six-game scoring streak ended against Notre Dame.
Brant in Net
Freshman Ryan Brant started his first collegiate game at Notre Dame, making 10 saves while allowing just seven goals against No. 9-ranekd Notre Dame. He opened the game with two saves in the first half (both in the first quarter) and then closed the game with three stops in the third and five in the fourth quarter. He also had two groundballs in the contest.
Senior James Green had a season-high three goals and points at Notre Dame and now leads the team with 12 goals on the year. He has two or more points in five games this season and is fourth on the squad with 13 points overall.
After he was held scoreless for the first time in six games against Albany last week, senior Mario Ventiquattro responded with a hat trick at Notre Dame last Saturday. Ventiquattro has multiple points in four games on the year, including a four-goal performance March 6 vs. Penn State. He ranks 23rd in the NCAA in shooting percentage, converting 45.5 percent of his shots this season.
Freshman Logan Schuss leads the Buckeyes with 10 assists and 20 points. He was limited to just one assist at Notre Dame, the first time this season he did not find the back of the cage, but extended his scoring streak to all seven games. He has at least two points in five games and has at least one goal in six outings on the year. Schuss, a two-time ECAC Rookie of the Week, had a career-high six goals vs. Detroit and followed that with five points vs. Penn State, including the overtime winner.
Junior Conor David had a team-best and career-high five groundballs at Notre Dame last Saturday. He now has 12 groundballs this season to tie for fourth on the team.
At the X
Freshman Trey Wilkes won 11-of-17 faceoffs at Notre Dame last Saturday and now is 58-of-116 on the year (50 percent). He leads the Buckeyes with 23 groundballs this year. He won a season-high 18 faceoffs at Robert Morris March 9.
Pires Picks Up Points
Junior Mike Pires has six goals, four assists and 10 points on the year, with at least one point in all seven games. He had a season-high two goals and three points vs. Detroit Feb. 27 and had two points, with a goal and an assist, against Albany March 13.
Back on the Scoresheet
After he was held scoreless for the first time in his collegiate career against Albany March 13, freshman Dominique Alexander had an assist at Notre Dame last Saturday. He had a career-high two goals and points vs. Robert Morris March 9 and has one point in five other games.
Follow ECAC Lacrosse on the Web
In addition to ECACLacrosse.com, the ECAC Lacrosse league has a facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/ECACLacrosse. On twitter, http://twitter.com/ECACchamps updates regularly, including live tweets from games. A mobile scoreboard is available at http://ecaclacrosse.com/m.