Feb. 13, 2013
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - The Cavaliers, ranked No. 7 in this week's USILA coaches poll and No. 9 in this week's Nike/Inside Lacrosse media polls, open the 2013 campaign on Saturday at home against the Drexel Dragons, who are receiving votes in the same respective polls. The game will be contested at Klöckner Stadium and faceoff is slated for 1 p.m. Live stats will be available at VirginiaSport.com.
There will be a live video webcast available through Cavaliers Live at VirginiaSports.com for a subscription fee. John Freeman will bring the play-by-play and Doug Tarring will provide the analysis.
This is the 12th year in a row UVa has opened up its season against Drexel. The Cavaliers bring a 11-1 all-time record against the Dragons into Saturday's contest, including a 5-1 mark in Charlottesville. UVa's lone loss in the series was a season-opening setback to the Dragons on the University Hall Turf Field in 2007, a contest moved out of Klöckner Stadium due to weather.
Despite UVa's dominant series record, all of the recent matchups against Drexel have been strongly contested beginning with Drexel's surprising victory in Charlottesville to open the 2007 season. Virginia broke a 5-5 second-half tie in Philadelphia last season and edged out the Dragons for a 9-8 win. In 2011, during a 12-9 triumph in Charlottesville, UVa and Drexel were knotted at 8-8 heading into the final quarter. Virginia scored four goals in the fourth quarter and goalie Rob Fortunato made several clutch saves in the end to preserve the victory. Virginia rode three goals and five points from Steele Stanwick as the Cavaliers took home an 11-8 victory during UVa's last trip to Vidas Field in 2010, which coincidently served as head coach Dom Starsia's 200th career win at Virginia.
UVa's 20-5 win in 2002 was the first meeting with Drexel in more than 50 years. The first meeting of the two schools occurred in 1947, Virginia's first season following World War II. The Cavaliers gained a 7-2 victory in Philadelphia. Barry Robertson was high man for UVa with four goals, while goalie Bob Catzen registered 12 saves. Catzen's 12 saves that afternoon is tied for the most by a Cavalier goalie in the series. Rob Fortunato filling in for All-American Adam Ghitelman in the 2011 meeting also saved 12 shots, helping UVa to the 12-9 triumph.
The Cavaliers are 46-32-1 (.587) all-time in season openers, including a mark of 26-16-1 (.616) when opening up the season at home. Saturday's game will mark the ninth time in the last 14 seasons the Cavaliers have opened at home.
Virginia enters 2013 after finishing with a 12-4 record last year and a NCAA Quarterfinal appearance.
With 27 returning lettermen, including five starters, Starsia's squad will attempt to return to Final Four weekend after Virginia's streak of four-straight appearances was snapped last season. His team is ranked No. 9 in three of four preseason polls (Nike/Inside Lacrosse media, Face-Off Yearbook and Lacrosse Magazine). The USILA coaches poll ranked UVa No. 7.
Tickets for Virginia home lacrosse games can be purchased online at VirginiaSports.com, by phone at (800) 542-8821 or in person at the Virginia Athletics Ticket Office in Bryant Hall at Scott Stadium Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Virginia lacrosse season tickets for 2013 are $50 (adult general admission) and $40 (youth, senior, faculty/staff general admission). Single-game tickets to lacrosse games are $8 (adult general admission), and $6 (youth, senior, faculty/staff general admission).
All reserved seats are sold out for the 2013 season.