The Navy Midshipmen will face their archrivals, the 20th-ranked Black Knights of Army, for the 100th time in men’s lacrosse history Saturday afternoon in Annapolis. The Mids lead the all-time series 61-35-3. Both teams will be wearing special uniforms to commemorate the meeting.
Navy, who is 5-5 overall and 3-3 in the Patriot League, is coming off an exciting 16-11 win against Colgate last weekend. Meanwhile, Army suffered their first loss in four games, falling to Boston University, 15-13, their last time on the field. The Black Knights still hold an impressive 8-3 season record and are 4-2 in conference play.
A Look at Army
Ranked fourth in the country in goals allowed per game (8.91), Army’s defense is led by their senior goalkeeper, AJ Barretto. With a 57.7 save percentage (sixth best in nation) and 8.89 goals against average (fourth best in nation), Barretto also adds an impressive 11.91 saves per game average to his Army resume.
Offensively, the Black Knights are loaded with four players having scored more than 25 points this season. Leading the group is rookie attackman, Brendan Nichtern, who has 49 points on 22 goals and a team-high 27 assists. Nichtern ranks 19th in the nation in points per game (4.45) and tenth in assists per game (2.45).
Miles Silva has 28 points this year for Army, all goals. Nates Jones has added 17 goals to the Black Knights’ total and nine assists. Finally, Matt Manown has posted 26 points on 14 goals and 12 assists.
The only true weakness in the Army attack is their faceoff game. Having won on 91 of their 260 draws this year, the Black Knights hold only a 35.0 win percentage from the ‘x’. (In contrast, Navy’s Nick Barry owns a 47.4 win percentage, having won 92 of his 194 draws in 2019.)
The Mids needs only one win (or a loss by both Colgate and Bucknell) to secure a spot in the conference playoffs. While a Navy win Saturday would certainly be an upset, no playoff-clinching victory could get any sweeter than grabbing it from Army.