Future Looks Bright for Hofstra Women's Lacrosse

After finishing an overall disappointing 2011 season on a positive note with a come-from-behind 9-8 win over Drexel Thursday afternoon, Hofstra women’s lacrosse head coach Abby Morgan expressed optimism for 2012.

A major reason for Morgan’s positive outlook is the solid production of many of her younger players late in the season. During the win over Drexel in which Hofstra rallied from a 8-5 deficit to score the final four goals, 11 of the Pride’s 13 points came from freshmen and sophomores. The win over Drexel ended Hofstra’s season at 6-10 overall and 2-5 in the Colonial Athletic Association.

“Obviously we would have loved to have seen a couple more wins on the board but the future is bright for our program in these young players,” said Morgan. "I think we have a lot to look forward to."


Hofstra men's lacrosse vs. Penn State in-game blog

The eighth-ranked Hofstra men’s lacrosse team closes its 2011 regular season with a Saturday night home game against Penn State that could go a long way toward deciding the Pride’s postseason fate.

Hofstra (12-1) and 20th-ranked Penn State (7-5) enter Saturday’s regular season finale tied for second place in the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) at 4-1. The winner of Saturday’s game will earn the number one seed and have home field advantage during the upcoming CAA Tournament. The Penn State game is also critical for Hofstra’s at-large NCAA Tournament chances as the Pride enter the weekend ranked 10th in the NCAA RPI.

Hofstra is riding a seven-game winning streak including a convincing 14-5 win over arch-rival UMass last Saturday in the ESPNU Warrior Classic at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, Conn. Penn State arrives at Shuart Stadium following an impressive 13-3 win at Delaware last Saturday. In last year’s meeting between Hofstra and Penn State the Nittany Lions rallies from a 7-2 deficit to post an 11-10 overtime win.

Saturday’s Hofstra-Penn State will be Senior Night. The Pride nine seniors who will be honored before the game include Stephen Bentz, Jay Card, Steven DeNapoli, Tim Holman, Jamie Lincoln, Adam Mojica, Steve Serling and Mike Skudin.

Check in with "Inside the Pride" for live updates of the Hofstra-Penn State game 15 minutes before faceoff Saturday at 6:45 p.m. Comments and questions are also welcome and encouraged during the live in-game blog.


Hofstra women's lacrosse vs. Drexel in-game blog

The Hofstra women’s lacrosse team will look to end the 2011 season on a high note when the Pride battles Drexel in the season finale Thursday afternoon at Shuart Stadium.

In addition to trying to head into the offseason with smiles on their faces, the Pride will also be looking to spoil Drexel’s Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) playoff aspirations. The Dragons (9-6, 3-3 in CAA) are still alive in the hunt to receive one of the conference’s four playoff spots and are coming off a 9-3 win over George Mason this past Sunday. Hofstra (5-10, 1-5 in CAA) nearly pulled off an upset of 12th ranked James Mason on Saturday before falling 9-8.

Check in with "Inside the Pride" for live updates of the Hofstra women’s lacrosse team’s final 2011 game 15 minutes before the opening draw Thursday at 3:45 p.m. Comments and questions are also welcome and encouraged during the live in-game blog.


Hofstra Softball Fielding Among Tops In the Nation

Hofstra softball head coach Bill Edwards always places a major emphasis on defense during pre-season practices and that sharp focus on the fundamentals of fielding is paying off to near perfection.

According to the latest NCAA statistics, Hofstra (31-10) is tied with Texas for first in the nation with a .984 fielding percentage. For the season Hofstra has only made 19 errors. Last year Hofstra was also tops in the country for fielding percentage before making two errors in a season-ending NCAA Tournament extra-inning loss to Arizona.

Edwards attributes the Pride’s fielding success to a combination of hard work and having a “constant repetition of fundamentals.” In addition concentrating heavily to the physical aspect of fielding, Edwards also institutes a system that enables each player to constantly be prepared mentally during each at bat of how to position themselves for a variety of situations.


Hofstra women's lacrosse vs. James Madison in-game blog

The Hofstra women’s lacrosse team will look to knock off the Colonial Athletic Association’s (CAA) leading team when it hosts 12th-ranked James Madison on Sunday afternoon.

Hofstra (5-9, 1-4 in CAA) snapped a four-game losing streak to start league play Friday night with a 16-7 win over George Mason. James Madison (11-3, 5-1 in CAA) is coming off a dramatic 9-8 win at Drexel in which Casey Ancarrow scored the winning goal with just seven seconds remaining. The Dukes are coached by Shelley Klaes-Bawcombe, who was the head coach at Hofstra from 2002-2006.

Sunday’s game against James Madison will Senior Day. The six Pride seniors who will be honored before the game are Alexandra Hannon, Maddie Hannon, Katie Hertsch, Bettina Mianulli, Stephanie Rice and Jennalee Trombley.
Check in with "Inside the Pride" for live updates of the Hofstra-James Madison game 15 minutes before the opening draw Sunday at 12:45 p.m. Comments and questions are also welcome and encouraged during the live in-game blog.


Hofstra men's lacrosse vs. UMass in-game blog

The eighth-ranked Hofstra men’s lacrosse team faces a critical test in its quest to make the NCAA Tournament for a fourth straight year when it faces 15th-ranked UMass Saturday as part of the ESPNU Warrior Classic at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, Conn.

Hofstra (11-1) and UMass (8-3) are in a three way tie for second place in the Colonial Athletic Association at 3-1 and the winner of Saturday’s game will take a key step toward potentially having at least one home game in next month’s conference tournament. A victory over the Minutemen would also keep very much alive Hofstra’s chances at receiving an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament should the Pride not capture the CAA’s automatic qualifier.

Hofstra and UMass have had an intense rivalry over the years with the Minutemen leading the all-time series 19-16. The most important game in the series that dates back to 1974 was UMass handing Hofstra a heartbreaking 11-10 overtime defeat in the 2006 NCAA Quarterfinals with the Minutemen rallying from a five goal deficit in the final eight minutes.

Check in with "Inside the Pride" for live updates of the Hofstra-UMass game 15 minutes before faceoff Saturday at 2:45 p.m. Comments and questions are also welcome and encouraged during the live in-game blog.

A Q & A With ESPN Lacrosse analyst Quint Kessenich on upcoming Hofstra-UMass men's lacrosse game

The eighth-ranked Hofstra men’s lacrosse team has a crucial game against 15th-ranked UMass (8-3) Saturday at 3 p.m. in the ESPNU Warrior Classic at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, Conn. that could decide he Pride’s postseason fate. ESPN lacrosse analyst Quint Kessenich, who will be providing color commentary for the game on ESPNU, spent some time with “Inside the Pride” to break down what to expect in this key Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) matchup and what it will mean in the bigger picture as the Pride (11-1) aim for its fourth straight NCAA Tournament appearance. Kessenich was a standout goalie at Johns Hopkins University in the late 80’s and was a teammate of Hofstra men’s lacrosse head coach Seth Tierney while playing for the Blue Jays.

Inside the Pride: With Rentschler Field being so close to the UMass campus do you expect Hofstra to be facing a hostile environment Saturday?

Quint Kessenich: Not really. What I find in these big stadiums is because they are so big it tends to kind of mute out the fans who are there. It makes 5,000 fans look small and it’s just not as overwhelming as when you are on a campus and there is maybe 2,000 fans there but it feels like you are at a college basketball game.

Inside the Pride: What stands out to you when looking at this Hofstra-UMass matchup?

Quint Kessenich: Faceoffs are big because both teams are really good in that department….. UMass is a terrific team with faceoffs and groundballs. They generate a lot of shots but if you look at their shooting percentage in their three losses that’s where they lost. They shot the ball horrifically. They have a pretty low shooting percentage in comparison to Hofstra. When I look at Hofstra I see a team that has great numbers across the board, good shooting percentage, good special teams, excellent goals against average, high faceoff percentage. I don’t know how much of that comes from playing against some lesser-tiered schools.


Hofstra women's lacrosse vs. George Mason in-game blog

The Hofstra women’s lacrosse team will be looking for it first Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) win Friday night at home against George Mason.

Hofstra (4-9, 0-4 in CAA) is coming off a tough 6-4 loss at Old Dominion Sunday that likely ended any hopes of the Pride reaching the four-team conference playoffs next month. Friday night’s game against George Mason is the first of three straight home games Hofstra has to close the season. George Mason enters Shuart Stadium also looking for its first CAA victory at 0-5 in the conference and 3-12 overall.

Check in with "Inside the Pride" for live updates of the Hofstra-George Mason game 15 minutes before the opening draw Friday at 6:45 p.m. Comments and questions are also welcome and encouraged during the live in-game blog.


Steven DeNapoli Honored To Play Senior Season For Nick Colleluori

Courtesy Hofstra Athletic Communications 

The determination displayed by Steven DeNapoli throughout his Pride men’s lacrosse career earned him a jersey number for his senior season that gives him a constant reminder of someone who showed major relentlessness in and out of his Hofstra uniform.

DeNapoli wore number 7 for the first three years of his Pride career and was honored when this past summer he was asked by the Hofstra coaching staff to change to number 27 for his senior year. Twenty seven was the number worn by former Hofstra men’s lacrosse defenseman Nick Colleluori, whose life was cut short at the young age of 21 when he died after a courageous 14-month battle with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma on Nov. 28, 2006.


Hofstra Women's Lacrosse Finds Itself in Unfamiliar Territory

After dropping two tough Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) games to Delaware and Towson this past weekend to open the conference slate, the Hofstra women’s lacrosse team finds itself in some unchartered waters and will need to dig deep in order to be apart of postseason play come May.

Not since Hofstra’s first season of CAA play in 2002 have the Pride began conference play 0-2. In that year Hofstra actually began 0-3 in the conference but still managed to qualify for the then six-team CAA Tournament, where it fell to James Madison 13-4 in the quarterfinals. The CAA women’s lacrosse tournament now only consists of four teams however and at 0-2 the Pride will have very little room for error in its final five conference games.


David D'Errico Shining as Hofstra Baseball's Number One Starter

 Courtesy Hofstra Athletic Communications
With his first season of collegiate baseball under his belt as well as a summer competing in the Western Major Baseball League in Canada, Hofstra sophomore pitcher David D'Errico has been riding high with confidence in 2011 in his second year as the ace of the Pride pitching staff.
In his first five Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) starts this year D'Errico has allowed only five earned runs with Hofstra going 4-1 in those key conference games. Thanks in large part to D'Errico Hofstra is very much alive midway through the CAA season to reach the four-team conference tournament in May.
“One year of experience pitching in college and a whole season of summer ball gives you a lot more confidence,” said D'Errico of the extra comfort level he feels in his second season taking the mound for the Pride. “I definitely feel a lot more comfortable this year than last year.”
Hofstra baseball head coach Patrick Anderson has also noticed a difference in D'Errico command as a sophomore going all the way back to the fall season. “He’s been more consistent in the strike zone and is just feeling confident about himself,” said Anderson. “He believes in his stuff and he believes in the guys behind him.”

D'Errico arrived at Hofstra after a distinguished baseball career at North Kingstown High School in Rhode Island where he was a First team All-Rhode Island selection as a junior and senior. He got thrown into the fire right away as a freshman at Hofstra becoming the Pride’s number one starter during the CAA schedule and earned a key win at Northeastern where he allowed just two runs in eight innings of work.
D’Errico arrived on Long Island with some familiarity thanks to his high school baseball and football teammate and “best friend” Cody Normand also deciding to select Hofstra for his collegiate career on the diamond. “Cody has actually been my best friend since like fourth grade so it was so ironic that we ended up going to the same college,” said D’Errico.
In his eight appearances this season D'Errico has recorded 26 strikeouts and given up only 14 walks. Prior to Friday’s game at Northeastern where he suffered a hard-luck 3-0 loss after giving up just two earned runs in eight innings of work, D'Errico was 3-0 with a 1.82 earned run average in his previous three starts. He tosses his first complete game in a 6-2 Hofstra win at William & Mary on April 1.
“He’s a hard worker and very humble,” said Anderson of D'Errico, who was also a star football player in high school earning Gatorade Rhode Island Football Player of the Year honors his senior season. “He’s a great teammate and the guys love him.”


Hofstra women's lacrosse vs. Towson in-game blog

After a heartbreaking 7-6 loss at Delaware Friday night in its Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) opener, the Hofstra women’s lacrosse team will be looking to even its conference record when it faces Towson in a critical game for both teams on Sunday afternoon at Shuart Stadium.

Sunday’s Hofstra-Towson game will be a rematch of last year’s CAA semifinals where the Pride came away with a 9-8 win. Towson dropped its last CAA game to Drexel 7-5 and is 7-3 on the season and 1-1 in conference play. The game will be crucial for both team’s chances of making the four-team CAA Tournament in May.

Check in with "Inside the Pride" for live updates of the Hofstra-Towson game 15 minutes before the opening draw Sunday at 12:45 p.m. Comments and questions are also welcome and encouraged during the live in-game blog.


Hofstra men's lacrosse vs. Manhattan College live in-game blog

The seventh-ranked Hofstra men’s lacrosse team is aiming to keep its momentum following a crucial Colonial Athletic Association  (CAA) win at Towson this past Saturday when the Pride battle local opponent Manhattan College Tuesday night.

Since suffering its only loss of the season in its CAA opener at Delaware, Hofstra (8-1) has put together a three-game winning steak with victories over St. John’s, Drexel and Towson. Manhattan (3-8) is coming off a 10-8 win over Jacksonville Saturday.

Last year in the first meeting between the schools, Hofstra crushed the Jaspers 18-2 with attackman Jaime Lincoln leading the Pride with four goals. Just 30 miles separate the two schools.

Check in with "Inside the Pride" for live updates of the Hofstra-Manhattan game 15 minutes before faceoff Tuesday at 6:45 p.m. Comments and questions are also welcome and encouraged during the live in-game blog.


Hofstra Men's Lacrosse Inspired By Youngest Member of Team

 Courtesy Hofstra Athletic Communications
In the midst of the Hofstra men’s lacrosse team’s successful 8-1 season, the Pride are finding inspiration from the newest and youngest members of the program.
Hofstra formerly adopted four-year old Dylan Beach as part of the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation (FOJ) prior to its March 26 game against Drexel. Beach battled a brain tumor and is currently in remission. The Pride sticklers decided to get involved with trying to add some joy into his life through the FOJ, an organization based in Quincy, Mass. that matches children in need of love, support and friendship with a college or high school sports team.
“He’s tougher than any guy we’ve got in the locker room,” said Hofstra men’s lacrosse head coach Seth Tierney.