Men's Lacrosse is Set to Host the No. 7 NYIT Bears

Men's Lacrosse is Set to Host the No. 7 NYIT Bears

TAMPA, Fla. – The University of Tampa men's lacrosse team is set to host the No. 7 NYIT Bears on Friday, February 23rd. The game is slated to begin at 7:00 p.m.

The Matchup: No. 5 University of Tampa (3-0) vs. No. 7 NYIT (1-1) 

Date/Time: Friday, February 23rd at 7:00 p.m.

Location: Naimoli Family Intramural and Athletic Complex | Tampa, Fla.

Last Time Out: The Tampa Spartans upset the No. 1 Limestone College Saints by a final score of 12-10. This game marked the first time in program history that UT has ever defeated Limestone. Junior Andrew Kew led Tampa's offense with six goals for the Spartans, followed by sophomore Bryan Wright with two. Matt Vetter and Jake Mosher McGraw each had a goal of their own as well in addition to leading the team in assists with two each. Newcomer Shane Hanlon also logged two assists for UT. Senior captain Luke Posner headed the Spartans defense, shutting down the Saints main offensive weapon, while Ross Dickerson led the team in ground balls with eight, while also winning 21-of-25 faceoffs. In the cage, the Spartans started B.J. Borowski who recorded 10 saves.

About the Spartans: Tampa finished last season 15-5 overall, undefeated in the Sunshine State Conference. Key returners for the Spartans include Andrew Kew, Jake Mosher McGraw, Bryan Wright, Luke Posner, Matt Vetter, and Jack Tyrrell.  

Kew, a USILA first-team All-American, All SSC first team selection, and a 2018 USILA Player of the Year Watch List recipient, returns as the Spartans main offensive threat. The Oakville, Ontario native led all of Division II last season with 86 goals, averaging 4.3 goals per game. Also, returning at attack for the Spartans is the sophomore duo of Mosher McGraw and Wright. All SSC second-team selection, Jake Mosher McGraw was second to Kew with 29 goals last season, including two during the national semifinal matchup. Wright rounds out the Spartans three returning offensive weapons contributing 25 goals and 14 assists last season. Additionally, he was an all SSC freshman team selection.

Captain Luke Posner returns for UT for his senior campaign. The Madisonville, La, native was an All SSC second-team selection last season and led the Spartans in ground balls with 46. Additionally, he recorded 20 caused turnovers for UT. Junior midfielder Matt Vetter, was a SSC All-Championship Team selection last season. He is one of the most well-rounded athletes for the Spartans, having recorded 22 goals, 10 assists, and 11 ground balls in 2017. Also at the midfield position, and the last key returner is junior Jack Tyrell. Tyrell, an All SSC second-team selection stated 39 ground balls and caused 30 turnovers for the Spartans last season.

This season the University of Tampa men's lacrosse team hopes to pick up right where they left off. The squad was selected as the No. 6 team in the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association/Nike Preseason Coaches Poll, in addition to unanimously being selected to win the Sunshine State Title for the fifth consecutive year. However, after defeating the No. 1 Limestone College Saints, the Spartans have moved up to No. 5 in the rankings.

About the Bears: The Bears ended the 2017 season with an overall record of 14-3, 8-0 in the East Coast Conference. This season, NYIT is out to a 1-1 start and are ranked No. 7 according to the USILA coaches poll. Offensively the Bears are led by Senior LeRoy Halftown who currently has six goals and four assists, followed by sophomore Andrew Zito who sits with six goals and two assists. Shlomo Amar leads the team in faceoff wins and ground balls winning 31-of-59 and picking up 21 respectively. The Bears use Jake Mellen in the cage. He has recorded 20 saves and has a goals against average of 12.50.  

Series History (Men's): The Bears lead the all-time series record over the Spartans 2-1.

Tickets: Tickets for are $5 for adults, senior citizens and coaches. Children under 12 will be admitted free. UT students, faculty and staff will be admitted free with a valid student ID.