SYRACUSE, N.Y. –The eighth-ranked Orange men’s lacrosse team opened the 2012 season with a pair of scrimmage wins on Sunday, Feb. 5 at the Carrier Dome. Syracuse knocked off No. 14 Hofstra, 7-5, and defeated Division II power Le Moyne, 11-5.
All three teams played two 90-minute games in a round-robin format. Each scrimmage featured three 15-minute regulation quarters and a fourth quarter of running time.
Balance was the key for Syracuse as junior Christian Pagli (Madison, Conn.) was the only Orange player to record multiple goals in either game. He scored twice against Le Moyne.
Syracuse also got a good effort from its defense, which only allowed 10 goals in the two contests. Head coach John Desko was happy with the performance, but knows there is still work to be done.
“The defense was fairly solid, and we’re still figuring out who we are,” Desko said. “I thought Hofstra generated a lot of good shots and we want to slide a little quicker and recover a little better than we did today, but it’s where we are this time of year with new people and we’re going to get better at it.”
Against Hofstra, the Orange never trailed and led by as many as three (7-4) in the fourth quarter. Seven different players each scored once for Syracuse, including sophomore Derek Maltz (Ashburn, Va.), who opened the scoring with an unassisted goal at the 11:43 mark of the first quarter.
A Bobby Eilers (Simsbury, Conn.) goal put SU in front, 3-1, in the early stages of the second period, and the Orange held a 4-3 lead at the half.
The two teams traded goals in the third quarter before back-to-back tallies by redshirt freshman Henry Schoonmaker (Portland, Ore.) and junior Matt Pratt (Binghamton, N.Y.) in the fourth put the game out of reach.
Redshirt sophomore goalie Matthew Lerman (Villanova, Pa.) started and played the opening half. He finished with two saves. Maryland transfer Dominic Lamolinara (Arnold, Md.) relieved Lerman and totaled five saves in the third period to keep the Pride at bay. SophomoreBen Levy (Alexandria, Va.) finished up in the fourth quarter and did not record a save.
For Hofstra, Lance Yapor led the offense with a pair of goals. Starting goalie Andrew Gvozden made six saves in two quarters of work.
Against Le Moyne, 10 different players accounted for the Orange’s 11 goals, including Pagli’s pair. Junior JoJo Marasco (Yorktown Heights, N.Y.), freshman Matt Walters (Villanova, Pa.) and redshirt junior Ryan Barber (Camillus, N.Y.) also registered two points in contest. Marasco and Walters had one goal and one assist each. Barber passed out two assists.
Syracuse led the Dolphins, 3-1, after the first quarter with Marasco factoring in two of the Orange’s three scores. He netted the first goal of the contest at the 13:25 mark. Then he found Maltz for a goal with 3:25 left that pushed the Orange margin to two.
After a second-quarter tally by Le Moyne’s Sean Connors made the score 3-2, the Orange scored four straight to end the half with a 7-2 advantage.
Le Moyne closed the gap to three (7-4, 8-5) twice in the third quarter, but Syracuse ended the game with three straight goals, including two in the last period, to produce the 11-5 final.
Walters had a hand in both of SU’s fourth-quarter goals, connecting with Pagli at the 8:52 mark, and finding the cage himself with less than two minutes remaining to close the scoring.
Lerman again started for Syracuse in goal and made one save in one quarter of action. Three other Orange goaltenders each played a quarter to finish out the game.
Connors paced the Dolphins with two goals against the Orange. Both were assisted by Tyler Prevost.
In Sunday’s opening game, Hofstra scored the first four goals and never trailed on its way to a 9-5 victory over Le Moyne. Adrian Sorichetti led the Pride with three goals. Hofstra also got five saves from Gvozden in the victory.
Connors again led Le Moyne with two goals, and Prevost contributed three assists.
Syracuse concludes its preseason exhibition schedule on Sunday, Feb. 12 at the Carrier Dome when it hosts No. 7 Maryland. Faceoff is scheduled for 12 p.m.