Athletics

Amherst Returns Experienced Lineup to Lead Talented First-Year Class

2008 RECAP
The Amherst College men’s lacrosse team finished the 2008 regular season tied for 7th place with Trinity College in the NESCAC standings, which unfortunately wasn’t enough to give the Lord Jeffs an opportunity for

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Senior quad-captain Matt Pietroforte returns in net for Amherst.
postseason play.  Amherst closed the year with an 8-7 mark overall, and a 3-6 conference record.  The Jeffs started off their season with an impressive 5-game winning streak which included an overtime victory against then 18th-ranked, non-conference foe Springfield College.  Amherst managed to slip past the Pride in the last minute of overtime when Thomas McDonnell ’10 netted the game winner.  The Lord Jeffs posted their first NESCAC win against Connecticut College with the help of Matt Pietroforte ‘09 who notched 13 saves in the contest.  Brett Miller ’09 played a role in Amherst’s next NESCAC victory against Williams College, delivering 6 assists with stellar offensive play.  Amherst was able to close out the year with an impressive 17-12 win over Colby College in their last regular season game. 
The Jeffs finished the season with the highest points-per-game average in the NESCAC.

KEY LOSSES
Amherst graduated a class of five seniors last spring, highlighted by USILA Scholar All-American and NEILA All-New England selection, T.J. Jackson.  The Tri-Captain established himself as an offensive threat in his last two seasons with the Jeffs, scoring 20 and 40 goals, respectively.  In the 2008 season, he finished second in the NESCAC in goals, and was also elected to the All-NESCAC First Team.  Four-year starter and fellow tri-captain Will Ferrer also leaves Amherst with a stellar offensive record, finishing with a total of 102 career points on 65 goals and 37 assists.  Ferrer had a breakout season in 2006, when he scored 23 goals and 7 assists as a sophomore.  Despite being injury-ridden during his junior year, Ferrer was able to finish his career with a solid senior season, scoring 24 goals and 20 assists. After taking a season off to study abroad, defensive midfielder Chris Mottau returned for his senior year and helped the Jeffs with his tenacious and aggressive play.  Amherst also graduated long-stick midfielder John Armideo and defender Brett Larson.  Both players developed into solid components of the Lord Jeff defense over the course of their Amherst careers.  Each of these seniors was a great addition to the team, providing leadership and energy both on and off the field. 

KEY RETURNERS
Amherst returns a strong senior class as well as a number of players at every position from last season’s team. The Jeffs will also rely on a number of underclassman and newcomers to step into leadership roles this upcoming season.  Offensively, Amherst will return eight of their top ten point leaders from last season.  On attack, the Jeffs will look to Miller, who led the NESCAC with 32 assists, and McDonnell, who finished second in the on the team in goals (39).   Senior Thomas Foote finished in the top ten on the team in scoring last season, will also play a major role in the rotation on attack this season, while sophomore Luke Arnold will add depth.

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Senior quad-captain Tim Thornton will lead the midfield
unit once again this season.
In the midfield, Amherst returns a talented first line of senior quad-captain Tim Thornton and juniors Matt Kellman and J.T. Milone.  Last season, the trio combined for a total of 50 points, with 28 goals and 22 assists.  Kellman, a face-off specialist, will give Amherst an offensive edge as he enters this season with a .577 face-off win percentage during his career.  Juniors Alex Miller, Rob Denious, and Luke O’Brien as well as sophomores Nick Newman and Matt Levine will also provide depth in the offensive midfield.  Senior Nick Gilligan will provide a solid force on defensive midfield again this year after having a breakout year during the 2008 season and should factor into the offensive mix as well.  Senior Jelani Lundy-Harris and sophomore Nick Edwards will fill out the depth charts on defensive midfield.  Senior Evan O’Roark will play long-stick midfield alongside juniors Nigel Carr and Kyle Standiford and sophomore Parker Holcomb.

Defensively, the Jeffs will rely on senior quad-captain Chris Fitzpatrick.  Fitzpatrick has established himself as a defensive leader, serving as a captain for the Jeffs for two consecutive seasons, while earning a spot the 2008 All-NESCAC Second Team.  Senior quad-captain Clint Marchese also returns as a strong defensive presence.  The two captains will rely on solid performances from junior Mike Greenberg and sophomores Matt Rhone and Gabe Mann for support.  Junior Franco Aguirre and sophomores Andrew Alspaugh and Zack Zetlin will add depth to the backfield.

Senior quad-captain, Matt Pietroforte, returns at goalkeeper for Amherst this year.  After starting every game in the 2008 season and leading the NESCAC in saves and saves-per-game, the Jeffs will rely on the captain to continue his stellar performance between the pipes.  Junior Andrew Harrison who has also had an impressive first two years will provide solid depth in the net.

NEWCOMERS
Amherst welcomes a strong group of thirteen first years looking to join the Amherst Men’s Lacrosse program.  First-years Cole Cherney, Mike Ng and Pir Granoff will look to break into the attack this season while Matt Rawson, Alex Fox, Dan Routh, Brian McFeeley, Sebastian Herdt, Evan Redwood, Will Reed and Ryan Conway will look to see time in the midfield.  Lone defender Mike Arsiotis and goalies Sam Jakimo and Matthew Aizpuru will provide young depth in the backfield.