Men’s lacrosse to start out CAA play Saturday

Drexel to be a formidable opponent in the first weekend of conference play

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Men’s lacrosse to start out CAA play Saturday

Eva Trainer/Collegian

Eva Trainer/Collegian

Eva Trainer/Collegian

Eva Trainer/Collegian

By Grace Sherwood, Collegian Staff

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Coming off a strong victory over rival Brown University, UMass is looking to continue its winning streak heading into Colonial Athletic Association games starting this weekend against Drexel.

UMass (6-3) has rattled off five consecutive wins to close out its non-conference schedule and goes into conference play ranked at No. 16.

The Minutemen picked up the fifth win of their streak this past Saturday in a 14-7 win over Brown (3-4). The UMass defenders were the unsung heroes of the game, suffocating the Bears’ offense, as Brown went just 1-8 on extra-man opportunities.

“The defense does a great job,” said senior goaltender Sean Sconone. “They do a great job in practice, and the scout guy gave us a good look at what Brown does on man up, and that helped us out a lot. They give us a good look each week, and that continues to help us out. We practice hard for man down, and it showed on Saturday.”

Sconone had 16 saves and added two groundballs as well as a caused turnover. Other game leaders included sophomore Chris Connolly who tallied three of the 14 goals for the Minutemen to go with three assists.

“I think our win streak is from guys maturing as a team,” Sconone said. “Tom [Meyers] does a great job at the X – gives us a lot more possession and opportunities. I think just as the season goes on, we get better and better at what we do. Going into conference, if we stick to what we do, I think we’ll be okay.”

For its part, Drexel defeated Providence 15-9 on Sunday coming off a 13-10 loss to No. 14 Georgetown.

“Drexel is a good team,” Sconone said. “The whole conference, CAA, is made up of good teams. I think it’s very underrated in my opinion, but all the teams are tough. Each game we have to take it week by week and just stick to what we do.”

Last season, UMass defeated the dragons at their home field in a close game (11-10) to start out conference play. The Minutemen went on to finish 12-5 overall and 7-0 in the CAA to win the CAA championship.

“It’s been a long season,” said Sconone. “We’ve learned a lot from nine games. We’ve had a lot of ups and downs so far and learned from our mistakes. It’s good that it’s the end of the season because we’ve had time to mature as a group – as a team.”

UMass will face Drexel Saturday, with game time set for 1 p.m. at Garber Field.

Grace Sherwood can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @gshersports.