LEXINGTON, Va. – The Saint Joseph’s Hawks scored the first five goals of the game and went on to an 11-3 win over the VMI Keydets in men’s lacrosse action Wednesday afternoon at Drill Field #2 on VMI Post in Lexington, Va.
The visiting Hawks got on the board quickly, scoring three times in a span of 2:32 early in the first to take a lead they would not reliquish. They added two more scores before Dale Mattice got the Keydets on the board at the 1:23 mark, but SJU put the game on ice by scoring five of the game’s last six scores as well.
Mike Rastivo had four goals and an assist, while Ryan McGee had two goals and three helpers to lead SJU (2-2) in its win. VMI dropped to 0-4 despite Evan Windisch (10) and Joe Riccadonna (10) combining for 20 saves, the Keydets’ first game with at least that many stops since April 6, 2013.
Face-offs were even at 8 of 16 for both clubs and ground balls were fairly close at 28-23, SJU, but the story of the day was the clearing effort. Saint Joseph’s posted a 14 of 15 day but the Keydets were limited to 11 for 22, including 6 of 13 in the second half. It was the first time VMI had been held to 50 percent or less in the clearing game since going 7 of 14 against #22 Army on Feb. 20, 2010.
After Saint Joseph’s took the early 5-1 lead, Rastivo capped the first quarter scoring with a tally with 12 seconds remaining on the clock to make it a 6-1 contest. That was the score at halftime, as neither team scored in the second quarter.
Ben Huger tallied 97 seconds into the third period to make it a 6-2 game, but three straight goals by the Hawks to conclude the period put the game away. Brad Nardella scored VMI’s lone goal in the fourth, with the visitors capping the scoring with goals from Rastivo and McGee to account for the final margin.
In addition to Rastivo and McGee, SJU got two goals and an assist from Chris Blewitt, two assists from Anthony Joaquim and single goals from Pat Swanick and Bryan Garrahan. VMI did not tally an assist, ending a 75-home game streak of contests with at least one assist, a run that dated back to Feb. 24, 2003.
VMI lacrosse is now idle until March 7, when the Keydets take on Richmond in a road Southern Conference game at 1 p.m.