Falcons Host Penn In Home Opener
The Air Force lacrosse team (2-1) opens its home schedule this week, as it hosts Penn on Thursday, March 10. The game will begin at 3:00 p.m. at Cadet Lacrosse Stadium.
Last Time Out...Air Force went 1-1 last weekend at the Pioneer Face-Off Classic, hosted by Denver. The Falcons opened up the weekend with a 15-6 loss to 11th-ranked Towson before notching an 11-5 victory over Lafayette on Sunday.
After playing evenly against the Tigers in the first quarter, Air Force gave up a 5-2 lead to Towson at the end of the opening half. The Tigers then exploded offensively in the third period, outscoring Air Force 7-1 to take a commanding 12-3 lead. Another even period to end the game resulted in the 15-6 victory for the Tigers. Goalkeeper Justin Pavoni was outstanding for the Falcons, tallying 20 saves and 10 ground balls.
Lafayette took the early advantage in its game against the Falcons, but Air Force regrouped, taking a 4-2 lead at the end of the first period. After going up by three goals early in the second quarter, Air Force suffered a scoring drought, going without a goal for nearly 30 minutes. Meanwhile, the Leopards cut the margin to one goal. However, the Falcons came out on fire in the fourth quarter, outscoring Lafayette 6-2 for the 11-5 victory. Sophomores Will Meister and Justin Kuchta tallied five points each for the Falcons.
Scouting the Quakers...Penn (0-1), which was ranked 17th in last week's Inside Lacrosse media poll, fell out of the rankings after falling to unranked Villanova, 10-7, in its season opener.
The Quakers held a 5-3 lead at the half, but gave up four goals in the fourth quarter to lose the game. Leading scorers for Penn were DJ Andrzejewski with four points (two goals, two assists) and David Cornbrooks with two goals. Goalkeeper Greg Klossner tallied 12 saves in the loss.
In the Series...This week marks the first-ever contest between the Falcons and the Quakers.
Meister, Kuchta Named to All-Tourney Team...Sophomores Will Meister and Justin Kuchta were each named to the All-Pioneer Face-Off Classic team this past weekend, for their stellar performances. Meister, an attackman from Denver, Colo., combined for seven points on the weekend, with five goals and two assists, while also adding seven ground balls. Meanwhile, Kuchta, a midfielder from Ridgefield, Conn., also tallied seven points, scoring four goals and three assists.
Pavoni Saves The Day...Although the Falcons fell to Towson on Saturday, goalkeeper Justin Pavoni was stellar against the Tigers, notching a career-high 20 saves while adding 10 ground balls. Through the first three games of the season, Pavoni is averaging 14 saves and 8.3 ground balls per contest.
How We Rate...The Falcons have a few players that rank among the conference leaders in points, ground balls and save percentage.
Sophomores Will Meister and Justin Kuchta rank among the top scorers in the league, as Meister is tied for third with 4.0 ppg, while Kuchta is tied for seventh with 3.33 ppg. Goalkeeper Justin Pavoni leads the league in ground balls per game with 8.33, while ranking fifth in the conference with a .595 save percentage.
Up Next...The Falcons have 13 days off before beginning their five-game road swing at Fairfield on March 23. The 3:00 p.m. (ET) contest will start Air Force's 2005 GWLL slate.