As Penn men’s lacrosse prepares for a do-or-die matchup with Dartmouth on Saturday, its team captain has earned a place in a race for some prestigious individual recognition.
The Senior CLASS (Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School) Award — given annually — recognizes those who best live up to both parts of the student-athlete title.
Matt McMahon, a key cog in the Red and Blue defense since 2012, was named one of 10 finalists for the award last week. Voting for the award is split evenly between fans, members of the media and Division I head coaches.
McMahon is third in the Ivy League this season with 21 caused turnovers and fourth for the Quakers with 19 groundballs. He ranks fifth in the nation with two turnovers caused per game.
Penn sits at 2-3 in Ivy play, half a game behind Brown for fourth place (although Penn does hold the tiebreaker between the two squads). The Quakers dropped their first three Ivy matchups, including a triple-overtime heartbreaker against Cornell.
But coach Mike Murphy’s squad has won two games in a row and will host the Big Green in the regular season finale on Saturday.
What’s at stake?
Pretty much the entire season. The final spot in the Ancient Eight’s postseason tournament and a chance to defend the program’s first-ever league championship — earned during a 2014 campaign in which McMahon started every game and was named Honorable Mention All-Ivy.
The New Jersey native also started every contest as a sophomore and saw action in each game as a freshman. The 2013 Quakers had the best goals-against average in the nation, thanks in large part to McMahon’s 15 caused turnovers, good enough for third on the team.
McMahon has only one career point — a typical metic given the senior’s position. However, he certainly saved his goal for when it counted, assisting in a goal against Drexel in the first round of last year’s NCAA Championship.
The Wharton student and finance major started garnering accolades for his accomplishments on the field and in the classroom even before arriving on campus as a freshman. As a senior in high school, McMahon was named an AP Scholar with Distinction and earned an Essex County Scholar Athlete award.
For the CLASS Award, the national media selected McMahon and nine others from a list of 30 candidates, and the winner will be announced during the NCAA Championships, which take place from May 23 to 25 in Philadelphia.
McMahon has a good chance to be present at Lincoln Financial Field in a month’s time to accept the award. With a strong game against Dartmouth on Saturday, he might even be able to help give his teammates join him with a second straight league championship under their belts.Comments powered by Disqus
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