Vestal, NY (WBNG Binghamton) The 2014 schedule for the Binghamton University men’s lacrosse team was revealed on Thursday. Third-year head coach Scott Nelson announced Binghamton will play a 14-game slate this spring, highlighted by eight home games at the Bearcats Sports Complex.
“Like each year, we want to play a schedule against some of the better teams across the country,” head coach Scott Nelson explained. “I think we have really done that this year and fully expect us to be ready for the challenge. Our goal has always been to qualify for the America East tournament and that where our focus lies as we prepare for the season.”
BU has a total of 9 non-conference games in 2014, including a showdown with national power Syracuse University on April 9 at the Carrier Dome. It will mark the 4th time the two programs have met and the first time the two teams have squared off since 2009.However, the first game marked on Binghamton’s calendar will be their season-opener on the road at Sacred Heart on Saturday, Feb. 15. They have only played the NEC school one other time back in 2008 when they defeated the Pioneers 9-8.
The Bearcats will play in front of their home crowd for the first time in 2014 against Siena on Feb. 22 at noon. This will be a rematch of last season’s 2013 opener, a game in which the Bearcats were narrowly defeated 9-8 on the road. Just three days later, they also welcome Cornell to Vestal for a non-conference tilt. The Big Red are fresh off a 14-4 season in which they advanced to the semifinals of the NCAA tournament.
After a quick trip to Geneva, N.Y. to play the Hobart Statesmen (Mar. 1), they will have a three-game homestand against Delaware (Mar. 8), Colgate (Mar. 15) and Air Force on Mar. 22—- all games have a 1 pm start time.
America East conference play will begin on the road for the Bearcats, pitting them up against Hartford on Mar. 29. BU has enjoyed much success over the Hawks in the past, tallying an all-time record of 8-4, including a 4-3 mark on the road. Up next will be a home match against UMBC (Apr. 6). The Retrievers tallied a seven-win season in 2013 and made it all the way to the America East Championship game where they were upended by Albany 19-10.
BU plays at Vermont on April 6 and once again at home for a non-conference bout with Canisius (Apr. 15) under the lights at the Bearcats Sports Complex before playing their most crucial portion of the conference schedule. Matchups with Stony Brook at home on Apr. 19 and on the road at defending America East champs Albany the following Saturday close out the regular season for Binghamton.
A season ago, the Bearcats won an overtime thriller against Stony Brook on their home field, marking the first time they bested their America East foes since 2005. In regards to their long-time SUNY rival Albany, BU will look to knock off the early America East favorites at John Fallon Field on April 26. Albany made their fourth NCAA tournament appearance in 2013, climbing to #12 in the national polls at season’s end.
Binghamton comes off a season in which they finished 5-9 (1-4 America East), falling one game shy of reaching the conference tournament. The Bearcats return a veteran squad, complete with nine starters back for the 2014 season. Nine seniors headline the team which is captained by four-year players Mike Antinozzi, Greg Cove, Kelly Donigan and Matt Springer.
(Courtesy: Binghamton University Athletics)