Virginia lost a heartbreaker to #10 Syracuse, 14-13, as the Hoos lost the faceoff and saves battle in the second half on the road. Syracuse went 11-of-17 from the X and Virginia’s Will Railey only stopped three shots in the second half as the Orange overcame a 10-5 deficit. Virginia, ranked #9 in the country is now 4-2 on the season (0-1 ACC).
Virginia opened the scoring on a downtown bomb from second year Ryan Conrad.
Very nice heads up lay from Lukacovic, as he collects an errant shot and skip passes to Conrad for a set shot and score. 1-0 Wahoos. pic.twitter.com/4emrqoBAGi— Dan Aburn (@danaburn2423) March 5, 2017
First year Dox Aitken gave the Hoos a two goal lead on a man up goal before Syracuse’s Nick Mariano put the Orange on the board. Fourth year Zed Williams - and Virginia’s lone representation on the Tewaaraton Award watch list - found pay dirt to extend their lead to 3-1. AJ Fish put one away for Virginia and Syracuse scored three in that stretch to tie the game at four.
The second quarter was all Virginia as the Hoos got a goal from Mike D’Amario and three from first year Michael Kraus to take an 8-4 lead into halftime. The Hoos dominated every aspect of the game, taking a huge advantage on ground balls (25-7) and won eight of 14 faceoffs. Virginia goalkeeper notched five saves in the first half, coming up with a couple big stops to keep momentum in favor of the Hoos.
Syracuse’s Nate Solomon scored first to open the second half, but Virginia got back to back goals from Aitken and Williams to push their lead to five goals. Four straight goals from Jamie Trimboli, Solomon, Brendan Bomberry, and Matt Lane pulled the Orange back to within one at 10-9 with just under two minutes to play in the third quarter. Kraus’s fourth goal of the game, a nasty low to high shot as he rounded the crease, put a stop to the onslaught from the orange with :59 left in the third quarter.
Syracuse tied the game up at 11 on a goal by Sergio Salcido with 12:06 left in the game, but Virginia responded immediately with a fastbreak goal by Conrad off the ensuing faceoff. The Orange weren’t to be outdone, however, answering with a score from Ryan Simmons to re-tie the game at 12.
Syracuse re-gained possession with a man-up opportunity after this call:
The Virginia defense and goalie Will Railey responded well with two saves man down, but Syracuse retained possession. Both coaches used timeouts down the stretch, and there was a moment where it appeared a Syracuse defender’s foot crossed midfield (that would have given Virginia possession), but Syracuse got a late goal from Salcido with :15 left to seal the game for the Orange. Virginia never regained possession following the push by Kraus.
Aitken finished with three goals and two assists, giving him 19 for the season so far and tying him with Larry LeDoyen (1983) and Jay Jalbert (1997) for most goals scored by a first year midfielder at UVA. Reminder...we are six games into the season. Next up, Virginia heads to the west coast to take on Cornell on Saturday.