Previewing VMI's 2022 men's lacrosse schedule
The VMI Keydets are the second team in our 2022 men’s college lacrosse schedule preview series and the first team from the SoCon. VMI finished 1-10 overall in 2021, with their lone win coming against Lafayette in their regular season opener, and 0-6 in SoCon play. The Keydets were unable to qualify for the SoCon Tournament.
Here's their entire 2022 spring schedule:
Manhattan Jaspers (2/16)
Hampton Pirates (2/22 & 4/23 [SoCon game])
St. Bonaventure Bonnies (2/26)
Monmouth Hawks (3/8)
Detroit Mercy Titans (3/12)
Air Force Falcons (18-4 L, moved to ASUN)
CIRCLE THESE DATES
2/12 vs. Lafayette: After a brief delay to open last season, James Purpura's second stint at VMI and first as head coach got off to a tight 13-12 win in Easton. Jon Fant and Hartley Jordan both had a team-high four points in the win. However, Fant, who was VMI's leading scorer in 2021, is now off to Saint Joseph's. Despite going winless in 2021, the Leopards would like to keep the momentum from the end of last year going into the new calendar year.
2/26 vs. St. Bonaventure: The Keydets will host the Bonnies for the first time in program history. After going winless in their first two years of existence, St. Bonaventure found a groove in 2021, going 5-5 playing a MAAC-only schedule. The large majority of their team also returns, led by top scorer Jake Rosa and goaltender Brett Dobson. St. Bonaventure will be in the hunt for a MAAC title, a position that VMI would like to be in sooner than later.
3/19 vs. Bellarmine: Outside of their season-opening win, VMI's closest contest was a two-goal defeat to Bellarmine in SoCon play. The Knights scored the game's final three goals in 5:16 to take home the conference win. The teams also played earlier in the season, a four-goal game in favor of Bellarmine. Bellarmine is now part of the newly formed ASUN conference, along with former SoCon member Air Force.
4/2 vs. Mercer: With Air Force and Bellarmine out of the SoCon, it increases the possibility for VMI to qualify for the SoCon Tournament. Defending SoCon champ High Point, along with Richmond and Jacksonville, should all make the conference tourney in May. Mercer will probably make it as the final team, but the Keydets would love to play spoiler if they can beat the Bears. Mercer has won the last eight meetings dating back to 2012.
4/23 vs. Hampton: 2022 will be a very important season for the Hampton Pirates for a number of reasons. They'll be taking the field for the first time since the COVID pandemic begun in 2020. They'll also have a brand new head coach in Chazz Woodson. And for the first time in program history, Hampton has a conference home in the SoCon. The Pirates and Keydets will play each other at Hampton in February, but conference games will carry much more weight into potential postseason play. Plus, this could become a Virginia lacrosse rivalry if Hampton continues to progress.