Is Saturday's Battle of Bethpage between traditional Ivy League men's lacrosse powers No. 11 Cornell and No. 19 Princeton the final game of Tom Schreiber's distinguished college career?
The Princeton senior midfielder and former St. Anthony's star certainly hopes not. His Tigers (7-5) have already been eliminated from the race to play in the four-team Ivy League postseason tournament next week, but if they can knock off the Big Red (10-3) at Bethpage High School, they still could be selected for the Division I men's NCAA Tournament as an at-large team.
Schreiber has scored 50 points (29 goals, 21 assists), tops in the Ivy League and No. 13 nationally. He is a lock to become a three-time All-American, but he has never reached the Final Four with Princeton, and time is running out for the player who will continue his lacrosse career as a professional next season. Schreiber was the No. 1 overall pick by the Ohio Machine in the MLL draft.
No matter the outcome of the Cornell-Princeton game -- which begins at 2 p.m. and will be followed at 5 p.m. by a Division II men's matchup between LIU Post and St. Thomas Aquinas -- the Big Red cannot improve its position in the Ivy League tournament. If Harvard beats Yale Saturday, the tournament would be at Harvard. If Yale wins, the games would be played at Cornell. Penn and Yale will join Harvard and Cornell in the competition for the automatic NCAA Tournament bid, with pairing and seeds to be determined.
In addition to Schreiber, there are several other key players with Long Island roots who will play before friends and family Saturday. Princeton midfielder Jake Froccaro (Port Washington) has 25 goals. Cornell's Doug Tesoriero (Syosset) is one of the nation's top faceoff specialists, Tom Freshour (Smithtown East) and Jordan Stevens (Smithtown West) start on defense, and attack John Edmonds (Ward Melville) has 20 goals.
Though a large crowd is expected, tickets will be sold at the gate.