March 24, 2012

Second Half Dooms Pioneers in 13-8 Loss to St. John's

Fairfield, Conn. (March 24, 2012) The Sacred Heart men's lacrosse team was outscored 9-2 in the second half Saturday night on their way to a 13-8 loss to St. John's on Campus Field to close out non-conference play.  Sophomore Cody Marquis (Londonberry, N.H.) and senior Aaron Lupo (Schenectady, N.Y.) led the Pioneers with two goals a piece in the loss. Sacred Heart's record falls to 3-5 overall, while the Red Storm improve to 5-3 with the win.

Matt Gannon, the Northeast Conference leader in assists, dished the ball to Matt King (Brewster, N.Y.) who found the back of the back of the net just over a minute into the game for the night's first goal. St. John's responded with two goals from Alex Lagodich and Harry Kutner for their first lead of the game. Both teams put one more goal on the scoreboard before the end of the quarter giving the Johnnies a one-goal advantage.

The Pioneers went on an offensive tear in the second period, outscoring the Red Storm 4-1. Lupo and Gannon teamed up for the first goal of the quarter, knotting the game at three before St. John's Terence Leach scored on a man-up opportunity. Leach scored both of the Johnnies' man-up goals tonight. In the final three minutes of the half, Sacred Heart stepped up scoring back-to-back-to-back goals.  Lupo notched his second of the quarter at 2:29 and sophomore Mike Mawdsley (Innsfil, Ont.) closed out the half with a marker with 13 ticks left.

SHU went into the second half with a 6-4 lead before being rendered scoreless in the third quarter. The Red Storm defense was hard at work in the third, holding the Pioneers to just six shots. St. John's goalkeeper Jeff Lowman recorded nine saves in the second half en route to a 12-save game. Leach, Kieran McArdle and Charlie Holenstein all scored within a four-minute span to give St. John's a 7-6 lead heading into the fourth quarter.

The Red Flash opened the fourth with two-straight off the stick of Kevin Cernuto for some breathing room at 9-6.  The Pioneers ended the five-goal run at 8:25 on a Marquis steal and unassisted score but three more from the Johnnies over the next six minutes left no doubt.  Leach buried his fourth of the night and goals by Holenstein and Ryan Fitzgerald gave St. John's a 12-7 lead with 2:52 to go.

A late goal from Matt Ferrino (Orchard Park, N.Y.) was not enough as Sacred Heart fell 13-8.

Sophomore goalie Ryan Hughes continued his double-digit saves streak as he recorded all 10 of Sacred Heart's saves in the loss.

Sacred Heart opens NEC play next Saturday in Smithfield, R.I. against the Bryant Bulldogs at 1:00 p.m.

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