Bucknell vs. Drexel
March 12, 2013
The Game Story:
LEWISBURG, Pa. -- Bucknell senior Kyle Feeney (Greenwich, Conn./Greenwich) earned Patriot League Men's Lacrosse Goalie of the Week honors on Monday after leading the Bison to a 7-4 win over then-No. 9/13 Massachusetts. That victory got Bucknell back into the national rankings with a No. 18 listing in this week's Nike/Inside Lacrosse Media Poll, and the Bison will put that ranking to the test on Tuesday at 4 p.m. against No. 14/13 Drexel at Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium.

Feeney made 14 saves, including five big ones in the fourth quarter, as Bucknell came from behind to defeat UMass in yet another sensational defensive effort. The Bison were blanked in the first half, but the defense kept the deficit at just 2-0. The offense then exploded for seven second-half goals and Bucknell outscored UMass 4-1 in the fourth quarter to break open a 3-3 tie.

Since falling 12-11 at Mount St. Mary's, the Bison have conceded only 14 goals in the last three games, and only six in the last two contests against Navy and UMass. Bucknell is now tied for second nationally in scoring defense, allowing only 6.8 goals per game. Only Hofstra is better at 6.6 gpg.

Feeney lowered his goals-against average to 6.59. That is the best mark in the Patriot League and the fourth-best in Division I. His .587 save percentage ranks ninth nationally.

The Bison currently lead the nation in man-down defense, as they have killed off 91.7 percent of their opponents' EMOs.

Bucknell has an extremely young offensive rotation. At times in the victory over UMass, four of the six offensive players on the field were freshmen, with an all-rookie midfield line of Brock Ghelfi, Thomas Flibotte and Kyle Shanahan joining frosh attackman Sean Doyle. Flibotte had a hat trick and Doyle scored twice, including the go-ahead goal in the fourth quarter, on Saturday. Flibotte is tied with Todd Heritage for the team lead in goals with 10, and Doyle has nine goals and three assists.

Sophomore David Dickson leads the league and ranks fourth nationally with 3.0 assists per game (15 assists in five games). Chase Bailey also has nine goals and is shooting 52.9 percent, the sixth-best figure in the country.

Despite all of that offensive youth, the Bison are leading the nation in fewest turnovers per game at 11.8.

Feeney and veteran defensemen Mike Huffner and Jackson Place have spearheaded the terrific defensive performance over the last two weeks. They will all have to be in top form on Tuesday against a Drexel team that averages 13.6 goals per game, fifth-best in the country.

The Dragons have converted on 55.0 percent of their EMOs and have scored at least 11 goals in every game so far. Drexel comes in with a 4-1 record and is ranked 14th in the Nike/Inside Lacrosse poll and 13th in the USILA Coaches' Poll.

Drexel started the year with a tough 13-12 overtime loss at Virginia, and then they came back a week later to post a wild 20-19 home win over Albany. Victories over Villanova (12-10), Robert Morris (13-12) and Bryant (11-5) have stretched the Dragons' streak to four.

Drexel already has five 10-goal scorers, led by Ben McIntosh with 13. Ryan Belka tops the squad with 20 points, coming on 11 goals and nine assists.

Last year in Philadelphia, Billy Eisenreich tallied three goals and two assists and then-freshman goalie Sam Grinberg came off the bench to record 11 saves, leading the Bison to a 12-11 win over Drexel. Heritage and Dickson both added two goals and two assists for the Bison, while Aaron Prosser led Drexel with three goals and two assists.