UMass men’s lacrosse expecting a better Hofstra team in Thursday’s rematch

  • Senior Buddy Carr and the UMass men’s lacrosse team are looking for their first conference tournament title since 2012. THOM KENDALL/UMASS ATHLETICS

@MattVautourDHG
Published: 5/2/2018 6:42:13 PM

AMHERST — UMass men’s lacrosse coach Greg Cannella doesn’t need to search hard for an example to motivate his team for Thursday’s CAA Tournament opener.

The Minutemen, who arrive on a nine-game winning streak, are playing the same Hofstra team they hammered 14-6 on Saturday. Last year, the Pride beat UMass, 15-8, during the regular season, but the Minutemen edged them, 13-12, in the CAA Tournament.

“You have to understand it’s going to be a different game. There may be adjustments at some point, whether that’s now or midgame,” Cannella said. “Hofstra spanked us last year in the regular season and two weeks later we beat them in this round. That’s all we have to say. It’s going to be a different game. The things that happened aren’t going to happen. Whether the result is the same or different, it’s going to be a different game.”

Senior Buddy Carr said the Minutemen are expecting a hungry Hofstra team.

“We’re going over everything like it’s a new week. We’re not treating it like it’s just the same opponent. We’re trying to treat it like we have all season,” Carr said. “We were clicking on all cylinders and they didn’t have one of their best games. They’re in the same spot as we were last year. We had that fire and were able to put it all together in that semifinal game. They’re going to bring a ton of energy. We have to be ready for it.”

The top-seeded Minutemen, who moved up to No. 16 in both polls, are hosting the event and will face the Pride at 5 p.m. at Garber Field. They’re trying to earn their first NCAA Tournament bid since 2012 and the 20th bid in school history.

“It would mean a lot,” Carr said. “It’s been a goal for our four years here. We really want this championship obviously.”

Delaware and Towson will play in the second game (approximately 7:30 p.m.). The winners will meet in the final, Saturday at 1 p.m. at Garber.

The winner will get an automatic bid in the 17-team NCAA Tournament field. No CAA team has a resume strong enough to earn an at-large bid.

Matt Vautour can be reached at mvautour@gazettenet.com. Get UMass coverage delivered in your Facebook news feed at www.facebook.com/GazetteUMassCoverage




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