Sports scheduling for the Denver Pioneers, in all sports, is often an elusive and frustrating exercise.
Being located in Denver is the largest problem, as playing here requires plane rides and hotel stays for all but a handful of DU’s D-I opponents, which is tough for non-revenue sports. We don’t have the exact figures, but it’s probably a safe bet that about 85% of DU’s opponents must fly here to play us, and likewise, DU needs to fly its own mostly non-revenue sports teams to 85% of its opponents — a dynamic that puts a lot of pressure on athletic budgets and eliminates many opponents for cost reasons.
Then there is the mile-high altitude here, a factor that still scares a number of opposing coaches from flatter places. For example, in 2004, the University of Virginia men’s lacrosse team, ranked #1 nationally at the time, came out here to play both DU and Air Force, and lost both games. The Cavaliers’ coach publicly blamed the altitude for their stumbles, and the Cavaliers have not appeared on the DU home schedule since then. Who knows how many other opposing coaches privately loathe our altitude? Continue reading Puck Swami: DU and the Elusive Art of Sports Scheduling in Denver
Photo courtesy of Denver Athletics
Just like that, another season of lacrosse has come and gone. The Yale Bulldogs ended the Ivy League drought by claiming the 2018 national title and their first of the NCAA era by defeating Duke 13-11 on Monday, May 28. The last Ivy team prior to Yale to have hoisted the championship trophy come Memorial Day was Princeton in 2001 under Bill Tierney, who is now at the helm of the University of Denver Pioneers. Continue reading Denver Men’s Lacrosse 2018 season in review
photo courtesy of laxbuzz
There was no stopping the high-powered No. 2-seeded University of Albany Great Danes from advancing to their first ever Championship Weekend with a 15-13 Quarterfinal win over the University of Denver Pioneers. The energy, the hard-hits and the passion from the Great Danes was unbeatable. The game came down to dogfight across the entirety of the field and it was evident, the Great Danes wanted it more. The efforts from Denver to stay in the game were too little, too late. Continue reading Great Danes win Quarterfinal dogfight to end Denver’s season
Postseason. It’s what every program strives for and the threshold where few thrive. The outlier of the lacrosse world, the University of Denver Pioneers, continues to excel and assert a western presence in the postseason. Continue reading Denver vs. Albany: A clash of cultures beyond the X
Photo courtesy DU Athletics
Throughout the 2018 season, the Denver Pioneers men’s lacrosse team has had issues playing a full 60 minutes. A fourth quarter collapse against Duke in February cost them a big early season nonconference victory and a first quarter mishap against Notre Dame dug the Pioneers into a hole they couldn’t climb out of. Both of their regular season losses were directly related to the Pioneers’ inability to play to their potential for a full four quarters of lacrosse. Today, however, against Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana in the First Round of the NCAA Tournament, Denver played great lacrosse all game long and came away with a big 9-7 victory to end the Irish’s season for the second year in a row. Continue reading Denver ends Notre Dame’s season for second straight year, advances to Quarterfinal vs. Albany
There’s history, there’s proximity, and there’s emotion. It’s more than fitting that the University of Denver Pioneers and No. 7-seeded University of Notre Dame Fighting Irish would cross paths in First Round of the NCAA men’s lacrosse tournament to only deepen the storied, westernmost rivalry. Continue reading A Western Rivalry Rekindled: Denver & Notre Dame to write next postseason chapter
Photo courtesy of Denver Athletics
It’s undisputed that Trevor Baptiste is the best faceoff guy in the country, arguably in the history of the sport of lacrosse. Even his opponents will attest to his uncharted domination. He has redefined the role of a faceoff specialist. Continue reading Building the Beast: Revelations from Trevor Baptiste’s understudies
Denver’s 8-3 Saturday loss to Georgetown cost the Pioneers a home playoff game in the First Round of the NCAA playoffs. Denver (12-3, 5-0) was nearly guaranteed a home first round game if they would have won the Big EAST Championship title game. Denver was on the RPI bubble but strength of schedule, both out-of-conference and in-conference, further hurt their home field hopes. That, combined with DU’s league championship finals loss probably popped the home-field bubble in the minds of the selection committee.
Continue reading Big EAST Final Loss Sends Men’s Lacrosse Packing in NCAA First Round
It took nearly 28 minutes for Denver to score – and it got worse from there. Credit Georgetown and their red-hot goalkeeper Nick Marrocco. The Hoyas allowed Denver few easy looks and pushed the Denver offense to the perimeter and created uncharacteristic Pioneer turnovers all four quarters in the 8-3 Pioneer loss.
Continue reading Denver Falls Flat in Big EAST Tournament Final, 8-3
Photo: Courtesy of Marquette Twitter
DU (12-2, 5-0) finally stopped the Marquette Golden Eagles (6-8, 3-2) after a furious forth quarter rally which narrowed a 4-goal Pioneer lead to just one goal. However, timely goals by DU pushed the advantage back to two goals and, eventually, an open net tally by DU’s Austin French put the final nail in the coffin and sent the Golden Eagles to defeat.
Denver started out fast with a 4-1 first quarter advantage. Marquette clawed back DU’s advantage by one goal over the next 15 minutes and the first half ended 5-3 in Denver’s favor. Denver extended their lead in the third quarter to make it 7-3 capped by a Danny Logan coast-to-coast goal with 6 seconds left in the 3rd period. But Marquette closed the gap after several untimely DU penalties and man-up advantages against Denver. Continue reading DU Weathers Marquette Surge, Wins 10-7 in Big East Semifinals