Sacred Heart Earns 15-11 Win Over Robert Morris in CAA Opener

March 22, 2008

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Fairfield, Conn. (March 22, 2008) - Sacred Heart juniors Bobby Rushton (West Islip, NY) and Dan Casciano (Syracuse, NY) combined to score seven goals Saturday afternoon, leading the Pioneers to a 15-11 win over visiting Robert Morris in the Colonial Athletic Association opener for both teams. Rushton tied his career-high with four goals, two man-up, as the Pioneers improve to 5-1, their best start on the Division I level.

The game got off to a lightening fast start with Robert Morris (4-5, 0-1 CAA) bursting out to a 3-2 lead just five minutes into play. After the Colonials scored the game's first two goals, Rushton notched his first, man-up, off a feed from sophomore Timmy Katz (Freeport, NY) at 10:56. Casciano's first came at 9:59, unassisted, to start a three-goal Pioneer run over the next two and a half minutes.

Pioneer senior Tony Tanzi (Mahopac, NY) scored back-to-back goals following Casciano for a 4-3 SHU lead. Tanzi scored off passes from sophomore Evan Morgan (Ashburn, VA) at 8:45 and sophomore Stephen Gerhard (Centiennial, CO) at 7:36. The Colonials closed the scoring in the first with a man-up goal from Pat Smith to knot it at 4-4.

Sacred Heart (5-1, 1-0 CAA) took control of the game in the second and third quarters, outscoring Robert Morris 7-3 during the stretch. SHU opened the second with back-to-back goals from Rushton and Gerhard for a two-goal advantage, a lead they would never give up the rest of the way. Morgan, Casciano and Rushton all scored unassisted to close out the quarter and send the Pioneers into the half up 9-6.

Casciano buried his third of the afternoon off a pass from junior Nick Hautau (South Salem, NY) at 11:19, man-up. The Pioneers made it a five-goal lead on sophomore Dan Mesler's (Branchport, NY) first goal of the season at 3:42. A Colonial marker closed the quarter but SHU used another quick start in the fourth to take their biggest lead of the afternoon.

Rushton buried his second man-up goal of the day to open the quarter, scoring unassisted at 11:47. Morgan picked up his second goal of the afternoon at 9:23 to give SHU a six-goal advantage, 13-7. The Pioneers also got goals from graduate student Pat Healy (Towson, MD), his first career scores, and Katz, who kept his goal streak intact at six-straight games.

The Pioneers were again led in goal by senior Ricardo Vargas (Falls Church, VA) who made 11 saves to earn his third win in the cage this season. The Pioneers took 39 shots in the win, putting 29 on goal, while finishing three-of-six on their man-up opportunities.

The Colonials got three goals apiece from junior Dan Kerch and senior Andrew Watt in the loss. Senior Michael Flemming scored a goal and assisted on three others. Sophomore Sal Barcia made 12 saves in goal, taking the loss.

SHU will have a week off before traveling to Villanova next Saturday, March 29th for a CAA match-up. The opening face-off is slated for 1:00 pm

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