April 13, 2006

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The Facts
The Ohio State men’s lacrosse team (4-4, 1-0 GWLL) returns to Great Western Lacrosse League play with a game against Butler (3-7, 0-1 GWLL) at 7 p.m. Friday in Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium in Columbus.

The game will be broadcast online by The Underground, Ohio State’s student-run radio station, at Jeff Svoboda and Dylan Horowitz will call the action.

Last Time Out
The Buckeyes downed Robert Morris, 11-3, last Saturday in Moon Township, Pa., to move their winning streak to four.

Butler lost a close game to Top 10-ranked Notre Dame, 9-8, at home in Indianapolis Saturday.

A Buckeye Snapshot
Ohio State is 4-4 on the year and is 1-0 in the Great Western Lacrosse League. After opening the season 0-4, the Buckeyes have rebounded to win four in a row.

The Buckeyes are second in the GWLL in goals per game (8.88) and rank second in the league in man-up scoring percentage (.259). Ohio State is allowing 9.49 goals a game.

Freshman Joel Dalgarno has a team-high 15 goals and 23 points. Senior Andrew Bender is second with 21 points and ranks first with 11 assists. Sophomore Kevin Buchanan is second in goals (14) and has 20 points to rank third. Senior Craig Nolan has 12 goals to rank third on the squad. Sophomore Ricky Pages has a team-high 19 groundballs this season. In the cage, freshman John Bolen has started the last three games, posting three wins, and has a 6.77 goals-against average and .633 save percentages. Freshman Nick Carr has won a team-best 51.1 percent of his faceoffs.

A League of Their Own
Ohio State is 1-0 in the Great Western Lacrosse League, as are Denver, Air Force and Notre Dame. Quinnipiac opened its first year in the conference 0-3, while Butler is 0-1.

This weekend, in addition to the Ohio State vs. Butler matchup, Denver and Air Force will host Notre Dame Friday and Sunday, respectively.

The team that finishes in first place in the GWLL earns the league’s automatic bid into the NCAA tournament.

Home Again
The Buckeyes’ game vs. Butler is the first of a three-game homestand to close out the regular-season home slate. Ohio State will host Denver at 7:30 April 21 and Air Force at noon April 23.

The Ohio State-Butler Series
Ohio State trails the all-time series with Butler, 5-8, but has won the last four meetings, including the last two in Columbus. Last year, Ohio State downed Butler, 13-9, in Indianapolis. In 2004, the Buckeyes posted a 12-5 victory in Columbus.

A Look at Butler
The Butler Bulldogs are 3-7 this season, with wins over Bucknell, Bellarmine and Robert Morris. Butler is averaging 6.1 goals a game, while allowing 10.14.

Cliff Smith leads the squad with 17 goals and 21 points. Jeremy Sieverts is second in goals with 12 and in points with 16. Adam Wade also has double-digit points with 13 and is third with eight goals.

Stan Ross, a 1996 graduate of Loyola (Md.), is in his first season at the helm of the Bulldogs and as a collegiate head coach.

A Look Back – OSU vs. Butler in 2005
Ohio State downed Butler, 13-9, April 9, 2005, in Indianapolis, Ind., in its Great Western Lacrosse League opener. Kyle Olson had a team-best three goals in the win, while Craig Nolan had two goals and an assist, Tom Randisi had two assists and a goal and Ben Wolff had two goals.

The Buckeyes got on the board first, as Josh Wittenberg scored with 6:36 remaining in the opening quarter. Josh Funk assisted on the goal, marking his first career point. The Bulldogs responded with a man-up goal 26 seconds later by Grant Albertson, but OSU’s Eric O’Brien scored six seconds after that to give OSU the lead for good. Olson scored his first goal of the game at with 4:38 left on the clock. Albertson, who ended the game with a team-best four goals, scored his second of the game with 2:51 left in the first.

Ohio State opened the second quarter with three goals in the first 48 seconds. Wolff, set up by Gary Bining, scored a man-up goal at 14:50, followed by Olson at 14:42 and Nolan at 14:12. Justin Doran ended the Buckeye run with a goal at 11:51. The Bulldogs scored the last two goals of the quarter to send OSU into the lockerroom at halftime with a 7-4 lead.

OSU scored the only three goals of the third quarter, by Olson, Randisi and Nolan. Olson scored his fourth goal of the game 28 seconds into the final quarter. Butler scored at 12:12 and 11:35, followed by a Bryan Keane goal, set up by Andrew Bender, with 10:26 on the clock. Butler scored three of the final four goals, with Jon DeCanio tallying for OSU, for the 13-9 final.

The Buckeyes had 33 shots in the game, while Butler had 40. Buckeye Mike Rimmer had 16 saves in all 60 minutes.

Ohio State won 12-of-25 faceoffs in the game. O’Brien won 9-of-20 draws, while Jon Rydberg won 3-of-5 faceoffs.

The Buckeyes converted 2-of-4 man-up chances vs. Butler, while the Bulldogs were 2-for-9.

A Connection Buckeye assistant coach Nick Myers spent the last two seasons as an assistant coach for Butler.

Six for Nine Buckeye senior Craig Nolan scored a career-best six goals in Ohio State’s win over Robert Morris last Saturday. The six goals were the most for a Buckeye since Curtis Smith scored seven March 8, 2003 vs. Quinnipiac. Nolan tied Kevin Buchanan’s team season-high of six points. Before Buchanan, the last time a Buckeye had six points was current assistant coach Anthony Gilardi April 23, 2004 vs. Air Force.

Nolan’s previous high for goals in a game was four, set at Denver April 22, 2005. The six points also were a career best, ahead of the four vs. the Pioneers.

Nolan’s six goals are tied with Denver’s Brandon Barcus for the league high this season.

Helping Out in Another Way
Freshman Joel Dalgarno did not score a goal of his own in the win over Robert Morris, ending his goal-scoring streak, which began in the season opener, at seven. Against the Colonials, Dalgarno had a career-best four assists, tying the team’s season high. He leads the Buckeyes with 15 goals this season and is second on the squad with eight assists. Dalgarno has at least three points in each of the last five games.

In The Cage
Freshman goalie John Bolen is undefeated in three career starts. After posting 11 saves in his first career start vs. Quinnipiac, he had 13 saves in each of his last two contests. Bolen has a 6.00 goals-against average and .673 save percentage as a starter.

In the League
Six Buckeyes rank among the top players in the GWLL this season.

Freshman Joel Dalgarno is fifth in the league, averaging 1.88 goals a game, and ranks second in the conference in points per game (2.88). He also is tied for seventh with 1.00 assists a game and ninth in the conference averaging 5.25 shots a game.

Senior Andrew Bender is third in the GWLL with an average of 1.38 assists a game and sixth in points a game (2.62).

Sophomore Kevin Buchanan ranks sixth in goals per game (1.75), while senior Craig Nolan ranks ninth in goals per game (1.71).

At the faceoff X, freshman Nick Carr is fourth, winning 51.1 percent of his faceoffs. Junior Eric O’Brien is sixth (.493).

The Buckeyes’ current four-game winning streak is the longest since the 2004 squad won 11 consecutive games.

After allowing nine or more goals in each of the first four games, the Buckeyes have held their last four opponents to eight goals or less. The three goals allowed by the Buckeyes against Robert Morris last Saturday were the fewest since they downed Quinnipiac, 15-2, March 19, 2005.

On a Run
Sophomore Kevin Buchanan has at least one point in each game this season and at least one goal in each of the last six games.

Buchanan already has a career-best 14 goals this season (after posting six last year). With 20 points, he already has topped the 10 points he posted as a freshman last season and he is third on the team. He also has a career-best six assists.

A Helper
Senior Andrew Bender is on seven-game goal and point streaks and has at least two points in each of the last six outings. He has at least one assist in each of the last six games.

Bender leads the Buckeyes with 11 assists this season. He had a team-best 14 helpers last year.

A Team Effort
In the 11-3 win over Robert Morris last Saturday, nine of the Buckeyes’ 11 goals were assisted.

Sharp Shooters
The Buckeyes have converted 28.2 percent of their shots, scoring 71 goals on 252 shots. Of their 252 shots this season, 63.5 percent (160) have been on net. Ohio State is 3-0 when outshooting the opponent this season, but 1-4 when being outshot.

Man Down
The Buckeyes have held their last three opponents scoreless on extra-man opportunities, including a 6-for-6 outing vs. Brown and a 7-for-7 performance against Robert Morris.

The First
Sophomore Mat Ballay scored against Robert Morris, marking his first goal of the season and the second of his career. His first goal also was scored vs. Robert Morris last season.

The Rooks
Through the first eight games of the season, 11 Buckeye freshmen have seen action for the Scarlet and Gray – Nick Carr, Scott Fetterolf, Doug Ruhnke, Jake Lecky, Joel Dalgarno, Brian Lalley, John Bolen, Mark Ferreri, Scott Matthews and Bobby Mehraban. Dalgarno has started all eight Buckeye games, while Matthews has started five contests.

Get Your Rally Caps On
In two of their last three games, the Buckeyes have won after entering the fourth quarter trailing. The Buckeyes trailed both Quinnipiac and Brown by a goal entering the final stanza.

Last Time Out – OSU 11, Robert Morris 3
Buckeye senior Craig Nolan had a career-high six goals as the Ohio State men’s lacrosse team downed Robert Morris, 11-3, April 8 in Moon Township, Pa. Buckeye freshman Joel Dalgarno chipped in a team and career-best four assists, while senior Andrew Bender had a goal and two assists for three points.

Ohio State led 2-0 after the first quarter. Nolan opened the scoring with a goal, assisted by Jason Bloom, with 11:33 left in the stanza. Jason Lutz then set up Bender for a tally at 6:24.

Robert Morris got on the board less than three minutes into the second quarter, but Ohio State scored three unanswered to go into halftime ahead, 5-1. Dan Mulford scored for the Colonials at 12:42. Nolan then scored twice, set up by Dalgarno at 8:42 and Bender at 6:02. Bloom closed out the half with a man-up goal, assisted by Dalgarno, with 3:06 remaining. Ohio State outshot Robert Morris, 12-5, in the quarter.

Ohio State scored twice to open the second half, as Peter Schell tallied unassisted at 8:52 and Nolan scored with 32 seconds remaining. The Colonials made the score 7-2 at the end of the third quarter with Carlo Sunseri’s goal with two seconds left in the quarter.

The Buckeyes outscored the Colonials, 4-1, in the third quarter for the 11-3 final. Nolan scored at 12:21, followed by Sunseri’s second goal of the game at 11:11. Bender set up Kevin Buchanan’s goal with 10:37 left, followed by Nolan’s goal, assisted by Dalgarno, just 54 seconds later. Dalarno’s fourth assist came on Mat Ballay’s goal with 5:54 left.

Buckeye freshman goalie John Bolen tied his career high with 13 saves. Ohio State outshot Robert Morris, 41-27.

The Buckeye defense held Robert Morris scoreless on seven extra-man opportunities, while Ohio State converted 1-of-4 EMO chances.

Leading the Way
Five senior Buckeyes were selected by a vote of their teammates to serve as captains for the squad this season – midfielders Andrew Bender, Gary Bining and Jason Bloom, attackman Ben Wolff and defenseman Brian Yontz.

Up Next
The Buckeyes will host GWLL foes Denver at 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 21 and Air Force at noon Sunday, April 23 in Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.