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Bonnies To Make History Saturday With First Home Game

Bonnies To Make History Saturday With First Home Game

Saturday, March 9 - 6:00 p.m.
Marra Athletics Complex - St. Bonaventure, N.Y.
Online Coverage: Live Stats | Live Audio | Live Video | International Video Link
TV: ESPN+ | Radio: WGWE 105.9 FM
Complete Game Notes (PDF)

The St. Bonaventure men's lacrosse team makes history on Saturday evening when it hosts Detroit Mercy in the first game under the lights at the Marra Athletics Complex. The Bonnies, playing in their fourth game as a program, are playing their second contest as members of the MAAC and play host to a Titans squad that was picked second in the MAAC preseason poll. 

HOME AT LAST: When Saturday rolls around, it will be nearly two years to the day since St. Bonaventure officially announced the addition of men's lacrosse as an NCAA Division I sport – 718 days to be exact. After that long wait, the Bonnies will finally host a regular season game on home turf under the lights at the Marra Athletics Complex. It will mark the first NCAA-sanctioned men's lacrosse game on campus since the University previously hosted an intercollegiate team between 1989-93. Many members of those Bonnies teams from over two decades ago will be on campus this weekend to enjoy the return of the sport to St. Bonaventure and meet the new generation of Bonnies players and coaches.
RETURN OF THE MAAC: Though the Bonnies will host their first conference game at home Saturday, this weekend will actually be the second MAAC contest for the Brown and White. The Bonnies and Manhattan played in the first MAAC game of the year back on Feb. 23 when St. Bonaventure made their conference debut outside New York City. Bona made a good showing against the Jaspers, taking the game into the final minutes until finally falling late. SBU scored the first goal of the game 50 seconds in and, after trailing 9-3 late in the first half, scratched back within 9-6 early in the third quarter and to 14-11 with 9:42 to play. Manhattan's defense stopped the rally effort as both teams went scoreless for over seven minutes before the Jaspers added an insurance goal late for a 15-12 victory. 
EVERY BONNIE HAS ITS ROSE: Freshman Jackson Rose wrote his name into the program record books by scoring the Bonnies' first MAAC goal just 50 seconds into the game at Manhattan Feb. 23. It was the first of four goals on the day for the Texas native as he tallied the first hat trick in program history and – through three games – owns the Bona record for goals and points in a game. Rose, who started the fall season with the other startup NCAA Division I program, Utah, joined the Bonnies for the spring semester and scored his first collegiate goals in the Manhattan game. 
GO WEST, YOUNG SEAN: Freshman Sean Westley made Bonnies history on Feb. 9 when he scored the program's first goal, a tally with 10:04 remaining in the first quarter at Saint Joseph's. Later in that game, he became the first Bonnies player to score multiple times in one game as he beat the keeper again late in the third. Through three games, Westley has a team-high eight points including two goals and two assists last time out at Manhattan. 
BELT-ER FASTENED: Freshman long stick midfielder Zack Belter has made a splash through the first three games. The high school All-American paces the Bonnies in both groundballs (eight) and caused turnovers (six) and has also made an impact in the offensive zone as well with two goals.
CAGE DUO: St. Bonaventure head coach Randy Mearns has two solid options when it comes to the goalkeeper position. Freshmen Brett Dobson and Ben Mazur have alternated starts through three games with both players likely to continue seeing reps as the season continues. A key part of back-to-back GEICO national champions with The Hill Academy, Dobson was the MAAC Rookie of the Week Feb. 4 after making 23 saves at High Point, then made 12 more stops Feb. 23 at Manhattan. A high school All-American, Mazur got the start Feb. 9 at Saint Joseph's and made 14 saves in the cage. 
YOUTH IS SERVED: While it is true that two programs will play at the Division I level for the first time in men's lacrosse this season, the back stories are quite different. Utah, while just now joining the D-I level and helping to plant another flag for men's lacrosse in the West, has competed in the Men's Collegiate Lacrosse Association (MCLA), a group of eight non-varsity college lacrosse conference featuring over 180 teams across 43 states. Bonaventure, on the other hand, is a true start-up program, with only one season of fall ball under its belt before playing official Division I games this spring. The Bonnies boast 33 freshmen on their inaugural roster along with two transfers (junior Nik Clinton and sophomore Daire Newbrough) as well as two players who moved from Bona's existing club team to the Division I program (sophomore Ethan Pryor and the team's lone senior, Michael Caulfield).
MAAC MEMBERS: In their first season at the Division I level, St. Bonaventure will be full members of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference and will be eligible for the MAAC Tournament in May. St. Bonaventure is a member of the Atlantic 10 in its other 16 NCAA Division I sports, however, the A-10 does not sponsor the sport of men's lacrosse. 
BROADCAST COVERAGE: There will be multiple ways to follow the Bonnies this season. All three home games on the 2019 schedule will be carried live by ESPN+ and also be on the radio through Salamanca radio station WGWE 105.9 FM. On the radio, Chris Russell will have the call of Bonnies home games through WGWE which is available throughout the Southern Tier and also in the greater Buffalo area and online at the link above. Fans wishing to watch the live stream may do so by subscribing to ESPN+ and can find more information by clicking here.

ABOUT DETROIT MERCY: The Titans are 3-2 overall on the season and started off with an impressive win, 9-8, vs. Jacksonville in their season-opener against a Jacksonville squad that was receiving votes in the national polls prior to the start of the season. After a 19-6 setback at No. 10/9 Notre Dame, Detroit Mercy defeated RV Marquette (15-12) and Bellarmine (15-14) on the road before dropping a road contest at Air Force (19-9) this past Wednesday. Like the Bonnies, the Titans have been road warriors, yet to play on home turf. Picked second in the preseason MAAC Coaches Poll after finishing 9-7 overall and 5-1 in conference, senior Matthew Vangalen and juniors Alex Akins and Alex Jarzembowski all were preseason all-conference picks. Thus far in 2019, Seth Mendell leads the team in goals (12) while Vangalen paces the Titans with 23 points. In the faceoff X, expect to see Jarzembowski as he has won 84 of 139 faceoffs, taking all but three of the team's faceoffs so far. In the cage, Logan Shamblin has played every second with a .419 save percentage and 52 saves. 

For the latest news on St. Bonaventure athletics, stay connected on social media. Follow the Bonnies on Twitter @GoBonnies and get men's lacrosse updates @BonniesMLAX. Keep up with the Bonnies on Facebook /GoBonnies and on Instagram @GoBonnies