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May 12, 2006

Charlottesville, Va. –

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NCAA Championships–First Round
#1 Virginia (1st seed) vs. #17 Notre Dame
May 13, 2006 • 3:30 pm
Klöckner Stadium • Charlottesville, Va.

Broadcast Information
Television: Saturday’s game is being televised by ESPNU. Scott Garceau calls the play-by-play, while Quint Kessenich provides the color commentary. Please check with your local cable provider to see if it offers ESPNU.

Radio: WINA AM 1070 in Charlottesville is providing live play-by-play coverage of this game. Jed Williams calls all the action. He is joined in the broadcast booth by Doug Tarring, a member of UVa’s 1972 national championship team.

Game Overview
Virginia is one of 16 teams starting the journey toward the 2006 national championship. The Cavaliers host Notre Dame in the first round of the NCAA Championships Saturday at 3:30 pm at Klöckner Stadium. ESPNU is televising the game.

The Cavaliers are the tournament’s top seed for the first time since 1980 with a 13-0 record. They remain the only undefeated team in the country and posted the first undefeated regular season in school history. Their 13-game winning streak is tied for the longest streak in school history. Virginia also owns the nation’s longest home winning streak at 18 games.

This is the Cavaliers’ 29th appearance in the national playoffs, second most behind Johns Hopkins (35). Virginia’s all-time tournament record is 33-25.

Virginia has won three NCAA Championships (1972, 1999, 2003) and was the USILA national champions in 1952 and 1970 (pre-NCAA Championships).Dom Starsia’s Cavaliers have featured a potent offense and a stingy defense this season. The offense is averaging a nation-leading 15.62 goals. There have been 11 Division I games in which one team has scored at least 20 goals and Virginia has four of them.

The defense is ranked eighth nationally, allowing just 7.23 goals per game, the Cavaliers’ lowest in 20 years. Defenseman Michael Culver was named MVP of the ACC Tournament after shutting out league player of the year Joe Walters from Maryland.

The Fighting Irish are 10-4 this season and have won their last three. They were undefeated at home (6-0), but played only .500 ball on the road (3-3). Notre Dame is making its first playoff appearance in five years.

This is the third time the teams have met in the first round of the NCAA Championships. Virginia won both–19-9 in 1993 and 23-4 in 1994.

Several Common Opponents
Virginia and Notre Dame have several common opponents this season, which is perhaps surprising given the geographic location of each.

The two teams have played Bellarmine, Denver, and North Carolina this spring.

The chart below shows the result of each match-up.

                 UVa        ND
Bellarmine W, 21-10 W, 8-2
Denver W, 13-7 L, 8-5
North Carolina W, 21-13 W, 9-7

Cavaliers vs. the Tournament Field
Virginia is 6-0 against teams in the NCAA Championships, with wins over Denver (13-7), Johns Hopkins (12-6), Princeton (7-6) and Syracuse (20-15).The Cavaliers also have two wins over Maryland–15-5 during the regular season and 11-5 in the ACC Tournament championship game.

Notre Dame is 0-3 vs. the tourney field.

Virginia in the NCAAs
This is Virginia’s 29th NCAA Championships appearance. Only Johns Hopkins has been to the tournament (35 times) more than the Cavaliers. (Maryland has also made 29 appearances.)

Virginia has a 33-25 all-time playoff record and is fourth in tournament wins behind Johns Hopkins (56), Syracuse (48) and Maryland (37).

Notre Dame is making its first tournament appearance since 2004 and 11th overall.

Cavaliers Earn NCAA Top Seed
Virginia is the No. 1 seed in this year’s NCAA Championships for only the second time in tournament history.

The 1980 squad had a wild ride to the tourney finals. They entered the tournament with a 10-1 record and an eight-game winning streak. In the quarterfinals of the eight-team tournament, the Cavaliers knocked off Cornell 9-8 in overtime. In the semifinals they downed North Carolina 11-10 in double overtime. In the finals Johns Hopkins won its third national title in a row with a 9-8 win in double OT.

Green Grass of Klöckner Bodes Well
As the weather gets warmer and the grass greener, the Cavaliers seem to heat up as well when playing at home at Klöckner Stadium.

Virginia is a combined 38-5 (.884) in April and May since moving to Klöckner in 1993. The Cavaliers have won 27 of their last 29 games in April and May at Klöckner since 1997. They have won 15 consecutive April-May home games going back to 2001.

The Cavaliers have a little bit of history on their side for this game. You have to go back more than a decade for the last time UVa has lost at home in April or May to a non-conference opponent. Towson’s 14-13 win at Scott Stadium on May 15, 1991 in the first round of the playoffs is the last time UVa lost at home to a non-conference team in April or May.

The Series vs. the Fighting Irish
Virginia holds a 4-1 lead in the all-time series against the Fighting Irish. The teams had a three-year series that ended in 2003, but have not met since.

Every game of the series has been played in Charlottesville.The first two contests between the two schools were NCAA Championship games played at Klöckner Stadium. The Cavaliers downed the Fighting Irish 19-9 in the first round of the 1993 playoffs and followed that with a 23-4 first round win the following year.

Notre Dame’s lone victory was an 11-8 win in 2001 as the Fighting Irish advanced to the final four before falling to Syracuse in the semifinals. Curiously, that win was the first regular-season meeting in the series. The Fighting Irish, ranked sixth at game time, became just the second team ranked fifth or lower to defeat the Cavaliers at Klöckner.

Virginia’s 23-4 win in the 1994 playoffs represents its biggest win over a ranked team in the program’s history (Notre Dame was ranked 14th at game time.) The margin of victory also marks UVa’s greatest in NCAA Tournament action.

Cavaliers, Irish Share Ties
The two teams share several ties which could be intriguing.

UVa assistant coach Hannon Wright was an assistant coach at Notre Dame last season and worked closely with goalie Joey Kemp, who started last year as a freshman. They remain close and still talk periodically.

Guy Van Arsdale, currently as assistant at Penn State and older brother of UVa assistant Marc Van Arsdale, was an assistant coach at Notre Dame in 2004.

Irish undergraduate assistant coach William Sullivan is the younger brother of Calvin Sullivan, a faceoff specialist who played on UVa’s national championship squad three years ago.

Finally, Fighting Irish head coach Kevin Corrigan in a graduate of UVa and played on three NCAA Championships teams from 1979-81. He was an assistant coach on Jim Adams’ staff at UVa in 1987-88 before being named head coach at Notre Dame prior to the 1989 season. His father, Gene, served as athletic director at UVa from 1971-80, was the school’s lacrosse coach from 1959-67 and was the soccer coach from 1958-65 (among other positions). He left UVa to become Notre Dame’s athletic director in 1981.

Virginia Ranked First in USILA Poll
The Cavaliers are ranked first in the final USILA coaches poll, the seventh consecutive week they’ve been the top team. They have a 13-0 record, the best in school history. Based on available records, this is the longest UVa has been ranked No. 1 in the coaches poll since at least 1971. This is also the first time Virginia has been ranked No. 1 in the final poll since 1980.

Under head coach Dom Starsia, UVa is 19-5 when ranked #1 in the coaches poll. The Cavaliers are 9-0 in home games as the top-ranked team. Since at least 1971, Virginia has never lost at home as the No. 1 team.

Glading Named ACC’s Top Rookie
Freshman attackman Danny Glading was considered the top recruit in the nation by Inside Lacrosse and he has lived up to his billing by being named the ACC’s Freshman of the Year.

He has started all 13 games on attack for the nation’s top-ranked offense and is one of only four freshmen in the country with at least 15 goals and 15 assists. His 15 assists lead ACC freshmen and are tied for third nationally. Glading is also tied with teammate Garrett Billings among conference rookies in total points (35), and is second behind Billings in goals (20).

Five Cavaliers Named All-ACC
Five Cavaliers–Michael Culver, Kyle Dixon, Ben Rubeor, Drew Thompson and Matt Ward–have been named to this season’s 11-man All-ACC squad. Culver and Ward are two of only four players to repeat from last season.

Ward becomes a three-time selection, only the 13th player in school history so honored. He is the team’s leading scorer for the third year in a row with 45 points (26g, 19a) and leads the conference with 19 assists. He has been the team’s leading scorer in five games this season.

Culver is the top defenseman in the conference and earned all-conference honors for the second year in a row. He shut down Maryland’s Joe Walters, the ACC Player of the Year, in the league championship game, ending his streak of 45 games with a point. For his efforts Culver became the first defenseman to win the tournament MVP award since 1980. His 31 ground balls are fourth among ACC defensemen this year.

Dixon is having a phenomenal season and is considered by some as the best midfielder in the country. His 16 assists are tied for second on team and lead ACC middies. A rare scorer and set up man, he is one of only three midfielders in Virginia history with at least 40 career goals and at least 40 career assists.

Rubeor is perhaps the most dangerous attackman on the nation’s top-ranked offense. He leads the ACC in scoring with an average of 3.82 points per game and goals (2.36 gpg). Rubeor is tied for second on the team in goals with 26 despite missing two games due to injury and has been the team’s leading scorer on seven occasions.

Thompson is one of the top all-around midfielders in the country–he plays offense, defense and takes faceoffs. He ranks tied for third among ACC midfielders with 29 points and is second with 15 assists. He also ranks third in the ACC in faceoff percentage, winning 58 percent of his attempts, and is tied for third in ground balls with an average of 3.92 per game.

Defense Among Nation’s Best
The Virginia offense has been electric this season and leads the nation with an average of 15.6 goals per game. The defense is determined not to be outdone and has been especially stingy this spring. The Cavalier defenders–led by close d-men Michael Culver, Ricky Smith and Matt Kelly and LSMs Mike Timms and Chris Ourisman, as well as stopper Kip Turner-spearhead the nation’s ninth-ranked defense. The Cavaliers relinquish an average of 7.23 goals per game, their best performance since 1986 (7.20). Only Syracuse (15), North Carolina (13) and Bellarmine (10) have scored more than seven goals vs. Virginia this season.

VMI and Maryland have scored their fewest goals of the season vs. Virginia, while Denver, Stony Brook, Towson and Johns Hopkins all have their second-lowest output of the season against the Cavaliers. Of the 13 opponents this season, only Syracuse, North Carolina and Bellarmine scored more than their season average.

Starsia Wins ACC Coaching Honor
Head coach Dom Starsia has been named the Atlantic Coast Conference’s Coach of the Year after guiding the Cavaliers to the first undefeated regular season (13-0) in school history and their fifth ACC Tournament title. This is the seventh time Starsia has won the award, a league record.

Two Long Winning Streaks on the Line
The Cavaliers have won 13 games in a row, tying the school record for the longest winning streak. Virginia also won 13 consecutive games in 2000. A win over Notre Dame would enable the `06 squad to become the new record holder.

In addition, Virginia also owns the nation’s longest home winning streak with a school-record 18-game run. The Cavaliers’ current home winning streak is the fifth-longest in ACC history. (North Carolina won a record 28 home games in a row from 1990-94.)

Getting the Lead, Holding the Lead
One of the Cavaliers’ most notable characteristics this season has been an ability to score early, get the lead and retain the lead.

Virginia has scored first 10 times this season, including each of the last six games. (In fact, the only times UVa didn’t score first came in consecutive games against Syracuse, Princeton and Mount St. Mary’s.)The Cavaliers scored in the opening minute three times in a row recently (Maryland, North Carolina, Bellarmine) to get off to fast starts.

After relinquishing the first goal to Mount St. Mary’s on March 14 and falling behind 1-0 the Cavaliers have not trailed at all (a span of nearly seven games). Virginia tied the score a short time later to limit The Mount’s lead time to a mere 51 seconds.

Overall, the Cavaliers have led in 398:45 of the last 417:26. The rest of the time the score has been tied.

The chart below shows a game-by-game breakdown of Virginia’s lead time this season.

           UVa    Tied     Opp.   UVa led for last ... 
Drexel 42:04 15:12 2:44 26:33
Denver 42:34 17:26 0 41:14
S. Brook 58:38 1:22 0 58:38
VMI 58:08 1:52 0 58:08
Syra. 41:38 8:04 10:18 40:00
Prince. 13:12 13:11 33:37 7:31
MSM 56:04 3:05 0:51 56:04
Towson 58:05 1:55 0 58:05
JHU 48:46 11:14 0 45:20
Md. 59:45 0:15 0 59:45
UNC 59:27 0:33 0 59:27
Bell. 59:12 0:48 0 59:12
Md. (ACC) 57:26 2:34 0 57:26

Total 654:59 77:31 47:30

Make `Em Pay for Their Mistakes
With the nation’s top offense, Virginia has clearly shown it can score goals with the best of them. The opposition frequently makes it easier for the Cavaliers by frequently giving them extra-man opportunities. Virginia is getting more than four man-up chances per game (53 in 13 games).

The Cavaliers continually cash in, scoring on nearly 51 percent of their EMO chances to rank third nationally.

They have scored 27 EMO goals to tie Siena for the most in the nation.

Senior midfielder Matt Poskay has scored 11 of his 29 goals on extra man to lead the nation.

Poskay’s Streak Reaches 18 Games
Matt Poskay is the nation’s fifth-leading scorer among midfielders with 29 goals. Hartford’s Josh Wasson-McQuigge leads the way with 33 goals.

Poskay has scored at least three goals on six occasions this season and led the team five times.

He has also scored in every game this season to run his streak to 18 consecutive games with a goal, the longest by a UVa midfielder since David Curry scored in 22 straight games in 1996-97.

Overall, Poskay has scored at least once in 28 of the last 29 games (Duke 2005 was his only shutout).

Shooters Have Been Hot All Season
With four games in February and five in March during the coldest parts of the year (and only three games in the last five weeks during spring), perhaps it’s remarkable to learn that Virginia has been hot all year.

The Cavaliers lead the nation in scoring with an average of 15.62 goals per game. But they are also an extremely accurate shooting squad, connecting on 32.27 percent of their shots to rank third in the nation in shooting percentage. (Albany leads at 34.11 percent, followed by Hartford at 32.32 percent.) Virginia’s shooting percentage this season is its best since the 1999 team won the national title while shooting 34.6 percent.

The hot shooting is all the more remarkable considering they also lead the nation in shots per game (48.38), nearly eight shots per game more than the next closest team (Georgetown 40.83). The shots per game average is the program’s highest since topping 50 shots per game from 1993-1997.

As mentioned elsewhere in this notes packet, the Cavaliers have only trailed for 51 seconds in the last seven games. During this span they are shooting 37.2 percent (110 of 296) and have shot at least 30 percent each time. The seven-game stretch is the longest since at least 1998.

Since 1998 Virginia is 62-4 (.939) when shooting 30+ percent.

Ground Balls Key to Victory
One of the goals of the Virginia coaching staff every game is winning the ground ball battle.

Last season the Cavaliers were exceptional and averaged 44.8 ground balls per game, up seven from the year before, and almost six more than the opposition. They also won the ground ball war in 11 of 15 games.

This year’s group of Cavaliers have done their best Brooks Robinson impersonation, sucking up ground balls at a nation-leading rate of 49.8 per game. Against Mount St. Mary’s, they gobbled up 67 and have topped 50 five other times. They also have a ground ball margin of 14.7 gb/g, also the nation’s best figure.

The Cavaliers have won 55 of their last 60 games (6-0 this year) dating back to 1998 when snapping up at least 50 GBs.

Virginia Has Nation’s Top Offense
Virginia comes into this game ranked No. 1 in the nation in scoring with an average of 15.62 goals/g.

The Cavaliers have scored 203 goals in 13 games, their most at this stage since they scored a whopping 246 goals in 1997. Overall, it is the fifth-most they have ever scored at this point in a season.

The Cavaliers have scored at least 12 goals in 11 of 13 games, including at least 20 four times. The last time UVa scored 20+ at least three times occurred in 1997 season when they did it five times.

The offense features several of the top scorers in the country, led by senior All-American Matt Ward and sophomore Ben Rubeor. Rubeor is sixth nationally in scoring with an average of 3.82 ppg, while Ward is 17th at 3.46 ppg.

Ward’s 45 total points are a team high, while Rubeor is next with 42 (despite playing two fewer games).

Virginia features five 20-goal scorers for the first time since the 2003 championship year when six Cavaliers notched at least 20 goals.

Seven different Cavaliers also have at least 10 assists for the first time in school history. In addition, five players have recorded at least 30 points for the first time since 2003. With Kyle Dixon and Drew Thompson just a point away, they could bump the total to seven for the first time in school history.

Culver Shuts Down His Man
Being a team’s top defenseman requires an ability to shut down the opposition’s top attackman. Senior defenseman Michael Culver has clearly demonstrated he’s been among the nation’s leading d-men the last two seasons.

He earned All-ACC honors for the second year in a row this season and has helped limit the opponents to fewer than eight goals per game.

As the top defenseman he is matched against with one of the nation’s leading attackmen each game.

His remarkable ability to shut down his man is best shown by his play in two games against Maryland’s Joe Walters this year.

In the regular-season match-up, Culver held Waters to a lone assist and 0-for-8 shooting in a 15-5 UVa win.

Walters, Maryland’s all-time leading scorer, was ineffective in the championship game of the ACC Tournament in UVa’s last game. Walters was held scoreless (no goals, no assists) for the first time in 45 games and only the second time in his career. He also misfired on all 10 shots. For his efforts, Culver was named the tournament MVP, the first defenseman to win the honor since 1990 (Joe Breschi, North Carolina).

Starsia Wins 150th at Virginia
In his 14th year at the helm of the Virginia program, head coach Dom Starsia has guided his Cavalier squads to many outstanding achievements, including two national championships.

Starsia’s list of accomplishments grew a bit last season when he passed former head coach Jim “Ace” Adams for the most wins in program history. Starsia won his 150th game at UVa with a 12-6 win over Johns Hopkins earlier this season. He now has a 154-54 (.740) record at UVa.

In addition to setting the school record for most wins, Starsia is tied for seventh all-time (as best we can tell) in coaching wins at the Division I level. (This list includes only time spent coaching at the DI level, which is why Dave Urick, Carl Runk and several others are not listed.)

He is also one of three coaches to win 100+ games at two different schools. In addition to his 154 UVa wins, he won 101 games at Brown from 1983-92. Jack Emmer won 100+ games at both Washington & Lee and Army, while Urick topped the century mark at Hobart and Georgetown.

The list of the winningest all-time Division I coaches is below.

Coach, school(s), years                         Wins1. Jack Emmer, Cortland, W&L, Army, 1970-2005    326
2. Dick Garber, UMass, 1955-90 300
3. Roy Simmons, Jr., Syracuse, 1971-98 290
4. Jim Adams, Army, Penn, UVa, 1958-92 284
5. Glenn Thiel, UVa, Penn State, 1970-pres. 276
6. Richie Moran, Cornell, 1969-97 257
7. Dom Starsia, Brown, UVa, 1983-pres. 255

Morrissey Unheralded Standout
Last season Inside Lacrosse magazine called short-stick defensive midfielder the “most important position in lacrosse” in a story about the seldom-noticed contributions of those playing the position.

Virginia’s J.J. Morrissey certainly falls into this category. Last season he could have easily been named the team’s most valuable player (it went to Matt Ward). He scooped a career-high 51 ground balls to rank sixth in the ACC (3.40/g), scored six goals and assisted on seven more.

This season he has been named a team captain in recognition of his leadership skills. Once again he is a demon on ground balls, ranking third in the ACC with an average of 3.92 per game while tying his career high of 51 GBs. Deadly in transition, he has scored four goals and has six assists.This is the third year in a row he has snared at least 50 ground balls, only the sixth midfielder in school history to do so.

Morrissey has led the team in ground balls three times this season and tied his career high with eight GBs vs. Syracuse.

Rookie Production
Dom Starsia knew when he signed this year’s class of freshmen that he was getting some talented players. However he might not have anticipated getting quite the production he’s gotten so far from this precocious group of youngsters.

Two rookies start (A Danny Glading, D Matt Kelly), while the several others see lots of playing time.

Glading has scored 20 goals and added 15 assists while starting every game. His 35 total points are sixth in the country among freshmen, while his 15 assists are tied for third.

Kelly has started every game as well and usually draws the opponent’s third attackman; he has 26 ground balls.

Canadian attackman Garrett Billings has started several games and is the fourth attackman when he doesn’t start. His 35 total points are tied for third most by a freshman (with Glading), while his 24 goals are tied for fifth.

Steve Giannone runs on the second midfield unit and has tallied eight goals and added four assists. He was the team’s leading scorer against Mount St. Mary’s with three goals and an assist.

Gavin Gill has played in nine games as a reserve on attack. He has scored just twice, but is 13th in the country among freshmen with 10 assists.

In addition, the top longstick midfielder is redshirt freshman Mike Timms. He second among the team’s LSMs with 23 ground balls.

Overall, this year’s freshmen have scored 60 goals (29.6% of team total) and had 44 assists (31.0%) and are the most productive freshmen since the 2002 newcomers scored 84 goals and 26 assists.

Ward Moves Up ACC Goals List
Senior attackman Matt Ward has earned his way onto a select list of Virginia’s all-time greats. He has led the Cavaliers in goals the last two seasons and has notched at least one in 51 of 58 games in his career.He scored a trio of goals in the win over Denver on Feb. 20 to become only the ninth player in school history to score at least 100 in a career; he is fourth with 123. Ward is also sixth among active Division I players.

His place on the ACC’s career goals list is shown below.

Player, school, years                   goals
11. Josh Dennis, Duke, 1987-90 129
12. Bert Fett, North Carolina, 1972-75 128
13. Frank Urso, Maryland, 1973-76 127
14. Pete Worstell, Maryland, 1978-81 126
15. T.J. Durnan, Duke, 1997-2000 125
16. Matt Ward, Virginia, 2003-06 123

Hoo’ll Lead the Offense Today?
Virginia features one of the most balanced offenses in the country with a host of players capable of putting up big numbers in any given game.

Thirteen different players have led the team in goals and there doesn’t seem to be any pattern as to who might lead on any particular occasion.

Ben Rubeor led the team in goals in the first two games, but missed the next two due to an injury. Since his return he has been the leader five times in the nine games. Overall he has been the leader a team-high seven times.

Matt Ward led three times in a four-game span (Stony Brook, Syracuse, Princeton), but was held without a goal by Towson and wasn’t the leader again until the Bellarmine game. He’s been the high man the last two times (Bellarmine, Maryland). He has been the leader five times overall.

Midfielder Matt Poskay has also led on five occasions. He scored three goals each four times in an eight-game stretch, leading in three of them (Drexel, Syracuse, Towson). He has shared scoring honors with Ward (among others) in the last two games.

Middie Drew Thompson led the way in three straight games–VMI, Syracuse, Princeton–but has not been the leader since.

Freshman middie Steve Giannone led in two midweek games–VMI, Mount St. Mary’s. Classmate Danny Glading was a consistent scorer early on but was not the leader until the ninth game against Johns Hopkins. Since then he has also shared the leadership honors the last two games.

Fellow rookie Garrett Billings (Glading’s roommate) was the goal-scoring leader against Towson with three goals. He blew up with a career-high five scores vs. North Carolina, the most by a Cavalier this year.

All-American midfielder had not been the leader until the last game against Maryland when he was among five Cavaliers to lead the way with two scores.

Rubeor is Dangerous Jewel
Ben Rubeor was one of the top freshmen in the nation a year ago and made an immediate impact in the line-up. He led ACC freshmen with 16 assists and was second with 18 goals and 34 points.

Despite being overshadowed by senior All-American Matt Ward, Rubeor might actually be the team’s most dangerous attackman. He was the only sophomore named to this season’s All-ACC squad.

He and Ward have both scored 26 goals, but Ward has scored three more points, 45 vs. 42. However, it should be noted Rubeor missed two games early in the season and has sat out large portions of several blow outs.Rubeor has led the team in goals a team-high seven times this season, including four of the last five.

He has also been the assists leader on three occasions, including three against North Carolina when it seemed unlikely he would play due to illness.

In the big games he’s been even better. He has scored 18 goals (2.57/g) and added nine assists (1.29/g) in seven games against ranked teams. His goal-scoring average against ranked teams is better than his rate against unranked teams (2.00/g).

After getting injured against Denver in the second game and sitting out the next two, he returned to action against Syracuse as if he had not missed any time. Once again he led the attack with three goals and two assists in a 20-15 win.

Rubeor scored what proved to be the game-winning goal in a 7-6 win over Princeton, interestingly enough on his 20th birthday.

Playing just minutes from his home, Rubeor led the way with five points (2g, 3a) in the 14-7 win over Towson several weeks ago.

He scored a game-high four goals in the 15-5 win over Maryland and was named ACC Player of the Week.

He is averaging 3.82 points per game to rank sixth nationally, while his 2.36 goals per game average is seventh.

Rubeor has also scored three man-down goals, more than every team in the country but two.

Glazer is ACC Faceoff Leader
One of the biggest question marks coming into the season for head coach Dom Starsia and his staff was who was going to replace four-year starter Jack deVilliers in the faceoff circle.

Senior Charlie Glazer and junior Drew Thompson have been the team’s top-two draw men, but with Thompson on the field for both offense and defense, Glazer has had plenty of chances to ply his specialty.

Given the most extended playing time of his career, Glazer has been one of the team’s most pleasant surprises with his excellent play. He is fourth in the country (ACC leader) in faceoff winning percentage with a 62.6 mark (109 of 174). He is also second in the ACC in ground balls, averaging 4.54 per game.

Glazer got the first starting assignment of his career in the opening game against Drexel and played a big role in the Cavaliers’ 15-7 win. He won 11 of 15 attempts (.733) and finished with four ground balls.

He had an even better performance in the win over Stony Brook, going up against Jim Astea, who was 12th last year in winning percentage. Glazer won 12 of 14 attempts (.857) as Virginia built a big lead and won 17-4. He also grabbed a career-high 10 ground balls to lead the team.

One of the keys in wins over Syracuse and Princeton was an ability to gain and maintain possession, particularly when it came to faceoffs.

In the win over the `Cuse, UVa outscored the Orange 8-1 in the second quarter to seize control. Glazer won 14 of 24 draws overall, including five of eight in that period, when the Cavaliers had possession virtually the entire period.

His ability to win draws was significant in the Cavaliers’ comeback from a 4-1 deficit to down Princeton 7-6. He won eight of 12 attempts, including all three in the third quarter when UVa mounted its comeback. Glazer also finished with a game-high seven ground balls.

Glazer had a perfect game vs. Mount St. Mary’s (11 of 11) and was excellent going up against Greg Peyser from Johns Hopkins, winning 10 of 17 draws.

Dixon is 40-40 Man
In baseball much is made of a player who combines the strength to hit home runs and the speed to steal bases, specifically hitting 40 home runs and stealing 40 bases in a season. In the entire history of baseball, there are only three members of the “40-40 Club” (Jose Canseco-1988, Barry Bonds-1996, Alex Rodriguez-1998).

In lacrosse a “40-40” midfielder is nearly as rare, as most middies are either scorers or passers, but rarely both.

Senior Kyle Dixon is one of the rare midfielders who can do both. Last year he was one of 10 ACC midfielders with 10 goals and 10 assists, and finished second among league mids with 17 assists.

This year his 16 assists are tied for sixth in the country by a midfielder, while his 29 total points are tied for 24th. He is one of only 18 midfielders with at least 10 goals and 10 assists this spring.

With 48 career goals and 52 career assists, he is one of only three “40-40 Midfielders” in school history. Additionally, he is only one of seven midfielders to score 100 points at Virginia.

Adding to the rarity of his skills, when he scores two more goals to reach 50 for a career, he’ll become only the fourth “50-50” midfielder in ACC history.

The list of Virginia’s “40-40” middies and the ACC’s “50-50” mids is below.

Virginia's 40-40 Midfielders
Player, years goals assists
1. Scott Gerham, 1981-84 45 57
2. Chris Rotelli, 2000-03 85 41
3. Kyle Dixon, 2003-pres. 48 52

ACC 50-50 Midfielders
Player, school, years goals assists
1. Frank Urso, Md., 1973-76 127 81
2. Jim Gonnella, Duke, 1994-97 55 90
3. Kevin Brennan, Duke, `00-’03 69 53
Kyle Dixon, UVa, 2003-pres. 48 52

Billings, Glading are Top Rookies
Danny Glading was named the top recruit in the nation by Inside Lacrosse in the fall, while classmate Garrett Billings was considered the magazine’s “Canadian X-Factor.”

Glading had a stellar high school career at Georgetown Prep and finished his career as the school’s all-time assists leader with 156. As a senior last year he scored 55 goals and finished with 93 points and was named the Washington Post’s Player of the Year.

Billings is a relative newcomer to the field game, but is a prolific scorer indoors, where he starred for the Burnaby Lakers club that won the Minto Cup in 2004 and `05. Last year he won the scoring title with 52 goals, 52 assists and 104 points and was named to the first all-star team.

The pair has given an already potent offense an added kick this season.Billings is tied with Glading for third on the team in scoring with 35 points (24g, 11a). He has led the team in total points in two of the last three games. He erupted for a career-high five goals and two assists in the win over North Carolina and followed that with two goals and a career-high four assists against Bellarmine.

The Canadian is tied for sixth in the nation in total points by a freshman and is the fifth-leading rookie goal scorer with 24.

Glading has scored at least twice in the last six games. An excellent feeder, his 15 assists are tied for third most by a freshman. He opened his career with a 2-goal, 2-assist performance against Drexel. He has shared the team lead in goals the last two games.

They are two of only 11 rookies in the nation with at least 10 goals and 10 assists. (Glading is one of only four rookies with 15&15).

They join a long line of freshmen who have made a mark on the Cavalier attack. Among the freshmen who have starred under head coach Dom Starsia include Christmas, Conor Gill, Doug Knight, Drew McKnight, Rubeor, Matt Ward, Michael Watson, Tim Whiteley and Joe Yevoli.

Poskay Fifth on Midfield Goals List
Matt Poskay set a national high school record with 362 goals during his storied prep career in New Jersey. Still there was some skepticism from some corners about his ability to be a big time scorer on the collegiate level. But Dom Starsia never had any reservations and his confidence in Poskay’s skills has been justified.

This season he is the nation’s fifth-leading midfielder scorer with 29 goals, which is tied for 19th overall.

Poskay also owns an 18-game streak with at least one goal dating back to last season, the longest streak by a Cavalier midfielder since David Curry scored in 22 straight games in 1996-97.

One of the most prolific scoring midfielders in school history, he is fifth on UVa’s goals list by a middie. A look at the list is below.

	Player, years            goals
1. Pete Eldredge, 1969-72 92
2. Chris Rotelli, 2000-03 85
3. Greg Traynor, 1992-95 82
4. Jay Jalbert, 1997-2000 78
5. Matt Poskay, 2003-pres. 76

Three-Year Starters on First Midfield
The first midfield unit of Kyle Dixon, Matt Poskay and Drew Thompson are in their third year as starters this spring.

After a rough beginning as a unit in 2004, they gelled last season and played a key role in the team’s dash to the final four. Among them they combined to score 56 goals and 23 assists in one of the most potent offensive units under head coach Dom Starsia.

This season they are even better. They have combined to score 56 goals (27.6% of team total) and add 35 assists (24.6%) this season.

Poskay is fifth among the nation’s middies with a team-leading 29 goals, while Dixon is tied for sixth in assists by a midfielder with 16 and Thompson is tied for eighth with 15.

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