VMI (1-4, 0-1 SoCon) vs. High Point (2-5, 0-0 SoCon)
Friday, March 17 – 7 p.m.
Drill Field No. 2 – Lexington, Va.
LEXINGTON, Va. – After a longer-than-expected hiatus due to the postponement of Tuesday’s game at Monmouth, the VMI lacrosse team returns to the field for a Southern Conference matchup with High Point Friday at 7 p.m. at Drill Field No. 2.
The Keydets are coming off a respectable 13-8 defeat last Saturday to No. 20 Richmond on the road, a game VMI had in its grasp were it not for a difficult third quarter in which the Spiders scored four unanswered goals that proved to be the turning point. Goalie Joe Riccadonna logged a career high 23 saves in the loss, the most saves in a game since the 1996 season when keeper Ryan Olson tallied 25 in a loss to North Carolina.
Senior Brad Nardella scored three goals against Richmond and leads the team with 10, breaking the previous career season high of seven he earned as a freshman in 2014. With two goals last Saturday, senior Chris Spada now has nine on the year and also broke his previous season high of eight from last season.
In coach Jon Birsner’s second season, the Keydets are averaging 7.8 goals per game, topping the 6.0 goals per game average from last year. Riccadonna has 73 saves to this point of the season, well on his way to topping the 158 from the 2016 campaign.
About the Panthers (2-5, 0-0 SoCon)
Having played a difficult schedule, three of High Point’s five losses this season have come to the likes of No. 7 Duke (10-5 loss), No. 3 Maryland (19-5) and No. 11 Virginia (18-12). The Panthers are currently on a three-game losing streak after falling to Robert Morris and Providence the past two weeks.
High Point is led by Michael LeClair, who ranks first on the team in goals (9), assists (8), points (17) and shot attempts (17). Jason Ashwood is another offensive threat as he ranks second in goals (8), assists (7) and points (15) for the team. Connor Robinson, Sean Harrison and Chris Young are also found among the team leaders in goals, assists and shot attempts.
Goalie Tim Troutner, Jr. has started all seven games for the Panthers and has earned 95 saves on 288 shot attempts, allowing 80 goals in the process mostly against ranked teams.