Tag Archives: Bill Tierney

Pioneer Offense Explodes for Tierney’s 400th Career Victory, 16-9 over Georgetown

The DU team applauds coach Bill Tierney (center, red jacket) for his 400th career victory after DU’s 16-9 win over Georgetown at Barton Stadium (Photo: Jason Evans)

After losing a one-goal heartbreaker in DU coach Bill Tierney’s emotional return to Princeton University last Tuesday, the #9-ranked Denver Pioneers desperately wanted to get head coach Bill Tierney his 400th win as a head coach on Saturday, March 30th.

Georgetown, the 19th ranked team in the nation and a team that beat DU 8-3 in last year’s Big East Tournament, was the big obstacle in front of Denver.

But the Pioneers left no doubts, exploding for a season-high 10 first-half goals and cruised to a 16-9 victory over Georgetown for the Pioneers’ most complete win of the season.

The win also guaranteed the 400th career victory in the 35-year head coaching career of coach Bill Tierney.  Tierney now joins his good friend, Duke Head Coach John Danowski, as the only two men in the history of Division One lacrosse to reach that 400 coaching win milestone.

The Pioneers (6-3) took the field in charged-up state of mind on this cold and snowy Barton Stadium morning, hooting and hollering more than usual in the warm-up – and that emotional advantage, coupled with a solid game plan on both sides of the ball, led to a 16-goal offensive output against a ranked team. This was the kind of potent offense DU fans were waiting for this season for a very solid opening win in Big East Conference play.

“Coming out of that game [last Tuesday] at Princeton, we were down-and-out,” said Coach Tierney after the win. “But the guys responded to coaching really well [this week] and the [assistant coaches} coaches put together a great game plan, and the [DU] players played extremely well today…When you lose a game [at Princeton] that you feel you could have won…you gotta get the next one – you’re so desperate…I’m proud of the guys today.”

The Pioneers responded to the desperation with crisp offensive execution, with very balanced scoring on the day, with five different Pioneers scoring multiple goals. Senior Austin French topped the DU scoresheet with a four-goal, two assist day, followed by hat tricks from Ethan Walker (3g 2a) and Colton Jackson (3g, 1a), and supplemented by two-goal performances by Teddy Sullivan and Jack Hanna. The Pioneers scoring machine was fed by a strong performance at the face-off X (Brett Boos went 17-26 on the day), a confident clearing effort (16-18) and good ball control, giving up only eight turnovers. DU led 10-5 at the half and never looked back.

“[DU Associate Head Coach] Matt Brown had a good game plan and the [team] followed it.” said Tierney. “We only only had one turnover in the first half…and the [Georgetown] goalie was playing well. We said to the guys in the locker room ‘Keep shooting. Don’t be afraid to shoot, don’t let your hands get too tight, just keep shooting’ and they [goals] will eventually fall – [we] got a bunch of shots and they did [fall] .”

Indeed, Georgetown goalie Owen McElroy was heroic for the Hoyas in the net, making 16 saves in a losing effort.

Denver also played solid defense on the day, holding a strong Georgetown offense, averaging 13+ goals per game to only nine goals.  DU’s star close defenseman Dylan Gaines had an excellent outing, containing Georgetown’s star attackman, Senior Daniel Buccaro, to only two goals in the game, while DU goalie Alex Ready chipped in with 12 saves to get the Pioneer victory.

DU will play #20th ranked Villanova Wildcats next Saturday at 3:30 pm MT in the second Big East game for the Pioneers.

Our thanks to Jason Evans for his photo and interview of Coach Tierney after the game.

Princeton Spoils Tierney’s Return in Wild, 14-13 upset over Denver

DU coach Bill Tierney (left) congratulates Princeton coach Matt Madalon after the wild 14-13 Princeton upset over Denver: Photo: Princeton University/Shelly Szwast

It was supposed to be a special homecoming to Princeton, New Jersey for DU lacrosse coaching legend Bill Tierney, but the Princeton Tigers had other ideas, winning a wild and emotional game full of scoring and lightning-fast counter punches over #8th ranked Denver, 14-13.

Tierney, who spent 22 years coaching the PrincetonTigers to six national titles before jumping to coach Denver in 2009, had to be excited to bring his DU Pioneers to Princeton for the first time ever, gunning for his 400th career win on national TV. Tierney returned to his coaching roots at Sherrerd Field Tuesday afternoon with admittedly mixed emotions, and the significance of the game could be heard in a pregame interview as Tierney’s voice cracked with emotion as he reminisced about his Princeton past. The interview was less about his six national championships and more about the people he met along the way. Continue reading Princeton Spoils Tierney’s Return in Wild, 14-13 upset over Denver

Beast Baptiste the New Era of Faceoff Specialist

Photo courtesy DU Athletics

Faceoff specialists have been traditionally designated as “faceoff get-off” players, hence the FOGO acronym, but the University of Denver Pioneers men’s lacrosse phenom Trevor Baptiste has completely redefined the position in his first three years at DU. Continue reading Beast Baptiste the New Era of Faceoff Specialist

Back to Mass.: Full Circle for DU’s sole New Englander Connor Donahue

There’s only one Massachusetts native returning to home soil for Championship Weekend of the 51 players on the University of Denver Pioneers men’s lacrosse team. Junior attack turned midfielder Connor Donahue of Groton, Massachusetts will be playing on the field and have exclusive access to the Patriots’ Gillette Stadium, a dream of any New Englander. Continue reading Back to Mass.: Full Circle for DU’s sole New Englander Connor Donahue

Christian Burgdorf, Denver’s enigmatic captain, leading Pioneers back among lacrosse’s elite

Photo courtesy DU Athletics

Christian Burgdorf rose to the occasion. The University of Denver men’s lacrosse dominant defenseman displayed resilience when the team needed leadership and strength to come back from the shock of losing to Towson in the First Round of the 2016 NCAA Tournament as reigning national champions. Continue reading Christian Burgdorf, Denver’s enigmatic captain, leading Pioneers back among lacrosse’s elite

From player to coach to teacher, John Orsen has come full circle

Photo courtesy DU Athletics

Denver men’s lacrosse head coach Bill Tierney watched John Orsen develop as a college athlete, professional, and coach, all the while keeping a close eye. When the opportunity presented itself, Coach Tierney got Orsen on the phone and offered him a position as the University of Denver Pioneers’ defensive coordinator in September 2014. Continue reading From player to coach to teacher, John Orsen has come full circle

Bill Tierney & Matt Brown: Success bred from opposition

Photo courtesy DU Athletics

As a coach, establishing a rapport that is effective, trusting, innovative and compelling for players and other staff members is not a simple feat by any means. It takes chemistry and experience to even qualify for such position. Legendary men’s lacrosse coach Bill Tierney and Matt Brown were on opposite ends of the coaching spectrum when their paths collided at the University of Denver in June 2010. Canadian-born Brown was entering his third year on Denver’s sideline, while New York-native Tierney was in his 28th year of coaching. Continue reading Bill Tierney & Matt Brown: Success bred from opposition

Pioneers reach fifth Championship Weekend in seven years with delightfully boring Quarterfinal victory

Photo Courtesy AP Photo

With a 16-4 victory over Notre Dame in the NCAA Quarterfinal round, the University of Denver men’s lacrosse team has earned its fourth trip to Championship Weekend in the last five years. Trevor Baptiste won 21-of-22 faceoffs (no, that’s not a typo) and the Pioneers simply imposed their will on the Irish today. Continue reading Pioneers reach fifth Championship Weekend in seven years with delightfully boring Quarterfinal victory

Trevor Baptiste dominates as Pioneers shoot down Falcons in NCAA First Round

Photo courtesy DU Athletics

DENVER – Air Force really never had a chance. Trevor Baptiste was on fire both at the X and in the offensive half of the field and he nearly singlehandedly ended the Falcons’ season as his 5th-seeded University of Denver Pioneers topped the Air Force Academy 17-10. Continue reading Trevor Baptiste dominates as Pioneers shoot down Falcons in NCAA First Round

Brotherhood on the attack: Connor Cannizzaro and Ethan Walker share a unique bond

Photo courtesy DU Athletics

When you look at Connor Cannizzaro and Ethan Walker, you’d be forgiven if you give a double-take. The manner in which the two present themselves, their dialect, and their physical appearance translate to the field. If it weren’t for their jerseys, No. 40 worn by Cannizzaro and No. 57 sported by Walker, it’d be nearly impossible to tell them apart thanks to their nearly identical playing styles. Continue reading Brotherhood on the attack: Connor Cannizzaro and Ethan Walker share a unique bond