WATERVILLE, Maine --- The Colby College men's lacrosse team will play in a New England Small College Athletic Conference quarterfinal game Saturday for the fourth straight year when the Mules head to fourth-seeded Connecticut College for a 1 p.m. contest.
Colby, the fifth seed, makes the trip to New London for the second time this season. The Mules fell 8-7 in four overtimes to the Camels, but Colby has won seven of the last eight games after that difficult defeat.
The Mules (9-4 overall) will look to make the NESCAC Final Four for the second time since the confeerence started a playoff system in 2001. The 2002 team was seeded third and won a home game over Williams College to win the only other quarterfinal contest. Colby has fallen to Middlebury College (10-9, 2 OT) last year, Bowdoin College (10-9, OT) two years ago, and Tufts University (12-8) in 2009.
Colby, ranked fourth in New England and the first team receiving votes (21st overall) in the latest national poll, is 6-0 at home this year and 25-3 on Bill Alfond Field over the past four years. Despite the success the past four years, the Mules have had problems winning on the road. Colby did pull out a conference win at Williams on April 14.
How well the Mules play in the fourth quarter might be a key Saturday. Colby has outscored the opponent in the opening three quarters by 36-24, 32-20, and 40-22 margins. However, the opponent has a 31-18 scoring advantage against the Mules in the fourth quarter.
Colby junior midfielder Ian Deveau (Portsmouth, R.I.) has 25 goals and 17 assists for a team-best 42 points. Greg McKillop (Washington, D.C.) has a team-best 20 assists and 14 goals for 34 points, while John Jennings (Danvers, Mass.) leads the Mules in goals with 30 and has two assists for 32 points. Jonathan McIvor (Sudbury, Mass.) has 19 goals and nine assists for 28 points, Scott Margolis (New York, N.Y.) is at seven goals and nine assists, and Trevor Shorb (Lincoln, Mass.) has six goals and five assists.
Colby's Bjorn Knutson (Bloomington, Minn.) is winning 53 percent of his face-off attempts and leads the team with 83 ground balls. Christian Kelso (Summit, N.J.) has 13 caused turnovers and 28 ground balls, Russ Wilson (Denver, Colo.) has 18 ground balls and 11 caused turnovers, and Peter Willauer (Duxbury, Mass.) has 28 ground balls and six caused turnovers.
Mule goaltender Peter Reiley (Marblehead, Mass.) has a 7.70 goals against average and a .560 save percentage.
The Camels (9-5 overall), who won five straight league games to end the regular season, are led in scoring by John Lyons (26 goals, 14 assists), Andrew Freedman (18 goals, 13 assists), and JR Hartgers (16 goals, 14 assists).
Conn College face-off man Chuck Czerkawski has won 59 percent of his attempts and has 102 ground balls. Rob Moccia has a .576 save percentage and an 8.05 goals against average in net.
NESCAC Men's Lacrosse Championships
Saturday, April 28
No. 8 Amherst at No. 1 Tufts, 1 p.m.
No. 7 Hamilton at No. 2 Trinity, 1 p.m.
No. 6 Wesleyan at No. 3 Bowdoin, 1 p.m.
No. 5 Colby at No. 4 Connecticut College, 1 p.m.
Saturday, May 5
at highest remaining seed
Sunday, May 6
at highest remaining seed