Men’s Lacrosse Looking for Strong 2016 Season

Men’s Lacrosse Looking for Strong 2016 Season

Although it can hardly be called “spring” here in Happy Valley, spring sports have begun. Men’s lacrosse is optimistic about their season, especially after their stellar start this past weekend when they crushed Robert Morris University at home, 20-7.

The Nittany Lions (1-0) were voted fourth in the Big Ten preseason poll, a prediction they hope to hold true while still striving for first. The captains for the 2016 season are seniors Tommy O’Neill (Shamong, N.J.), James Burke (Duxbury, Mass.), and redshirt junior Drake Kreinz (Delafield, Wis.). Head coach Jeff Tambroni returns for his sixth season as head coach of the Penn State Nittany Lions.

Twelve different Nittany Lions put the ball in the net on Saturday, with the goals scored by players of each grade. A grand total of six freshman etched their first collegiate goals on Saturday, a promising start for this recruiting class, which includes players from powerhouse lacrosse areas like Canada, Maryland, and New York.

This year, Penn State welcomes back eight starters and 27 letterwinners.

Freshman Grant Ament (Doylestown, Pa.) notched two goals, the first of his Penn State career, while senior TJ Sanders led the score count with four goals.

Penn State outshot Robert Morris 46-31, leaving no doubt in spectators’ minds as to who was the stronger team. Penn State won 17 faceoffs to Robert Morris’ 12 as well as collected 47 ground balls, 9 more than RMU was able to muster.

The Lions opened up the first quarter on fire, notching six goals to RMU’s one. This trend continued as the Lions once again crushed RMU in the second quarter with eight goals, leaving the total at halftime 14-2. The second half of the game resulted in six more goals for Penn State and just five for RMU.

When asked about his team’s success on Saturday, Coach Tambroni said he was “thrilled” that his team played an “inspired game,” especially in the second and third quarters.

This coming Saturday, Penn State will take on Hobart at home, with the first faceoff beginning at 3 p.m. Hobart is Coach Tambroni’s alma mater, and it is sure to be an exciting game you won’t want to miss!

While the start of every new season presents organic motivation, the squad takes this year especially seriously, as every practice and game is dedicated to the late Connor Darcey, the Penn State lacrosse goalie who passed away last year. The team remembers Darcey in all that they do, and every pass, goal, and victory is done in his name.

Head to Holuba Hall this weekend to support your Nittany Lions!