WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Sacred Heart put up a great fight in the first contest of the 2019 season, ultimately falling to the defending BIG EAST Champion and No. 18 nationally-ranked Georgetown Hoyas, 13-10, from Cooper Field on Saturday afternoon.
Redshirt senior attack Joe Saggese led the way in defeat, matching his career-high with seven points on five goals and two assists. It was his second time tallying seven points in a game while it marked the third time he netted five goals in his 46-game career.
Sacred Heart 10 / No. 18 Georgetown 13
Sacred Heart (0-1) / No. 18 Georgetown (1-0)
Cooper Field / Washington, D.C.
First Half (5-4 GU)
- SHU saw a great deal of the ball in the early going, jumping out to a 3-1 lead after 13:47 of play and outshooting the Hoyas 25-19 in the first half
- Reed Avveduti scored the first goal of 2019 for the Pioneers with Logan Liljeberg finding the redshirt senior for the assist
- After the Hoyas evened the score, Liljeberg and Saggese then went back-to-back to build the two-goal advantage
- Junior goalkeeper Brooks Dutton also did most of his damage in the first quarter, denying five of the first six Georgetown shots-on-goal in the contest
- The Hoyas began to seize control in the second quarter, outscoring the Pioneers 3-1 in the period to take the 5-4 halftime advantage
- The lone Pioneer goal in the second game on a man-up opportunity with Max Tuttle finding Saggese for the strike
Second Half (13-10 GU)
- Trailing by just one at the half, the Pioneer bench came to life as Jake Lindahl found the back of the net to even the score at 5-5 with 28:14 remaining
- It was over the next 13+ minutes, however, that the Hoyas would put the game far out of reach as the Hoyas rode a 5-1 scoring run into a 10-6 lead heading into the fourth quarter
- A pivotal moment in the game came with the score still 5-5 as the Pioneers killed off a minute-long man-advantage for Georgetown and were looking for the go-ahead marker. After Avveduti's shot attempt blazed high of the cage, a contested ground ball at midfield was knocked towards the SHU defensive end right in the path of the Hoyas' Robert Clark who dished to Jake Carraway to push Georgetown out in front 6-5
- That momentum swing was significant as SHU managed just one goal the rest of the quarter while Georgetown scored on their next three possessions
- The Georgetown lead was cut to three on there different occasions in the fourth quarter, the latest of which came with 7:46 remaining as the score stood at 12-9 but the Hoyas finished strong on the defensive end and walked away with the victory
- The Pioneers managed to outshoot the Hoyas 48-41 in the game but were denied by the Hoyas' goalkeeper Owen McElroy who posted 16 saves while allowing just 10 Pioneers goals
- Saggese was the key cog for the Pioneers on offense in the second half, finishing with five of his seven points in the final 30 minutes of play
- Liljeberg and Max Tuttle each finished with one goal and two assists for three points apiece
- Joseph Cipoletti provided a great spark on the defensive end, finishing tied with Jake Giaquinto for the team-lead with five ground balls to go along with a game-high four caused turnovers
- Cipoletti's five ground balls and four caused turnovers each fell just one short of matching his career-high in both categories
- Avveduti recorded his third career multi-goal game as he scored twice on the afternoon
- Avveduti has provided a scoring lift of late, netting six goals over his last four games if you include his four-goal run in the final three games of 2018
- Conor Sullivan played well in his first career start, racking up two ground balls and two caused turnovers on the defensive end
- Giaquinto held his own at the X, going 13-for-27 on the day
- Turnovers told the story in this one as the Pioneers committed 22 on the day while going just 10-for-17 (58.9 percent) on clearing attempts
The Pioneers head back on the road for a neutral site matchup against Furman on Saturday, Feb. 16. The game will be played at Radnor High School in Philadelphia with a 11:00 AM start. SHU has won each of the first two all-time meetings, including a 17-13 triumph last season in a game played in Baltimore.