Hobart came into last night's game with Syracuse with the top-ranked defense in the nation. There was indeed a defensive display last night but it came from the other team. SU led the Statesmen 9-1 at the half and didn't let up, beating Hobart 13-4. For the Orange, this one was all about the D:
Syracuse's defense stymied another opponent by holding Hobart to four goals in the Orange's 13-4 triumph. SU has only allowed eight goals in its last two games and is allowing only 7.67 goals per contest.
Offensively, the Orange might not have a megastar in the vein of Mike Leveille or a Powell brother, but they do have a group of talented players all capable of stepping up any given night.
Nims, who leads the team with 31 points (15 goals, 16 assists), has been a constant. So has sophomore attackman Stephen Keogh, who leads the team with 21 goals. Throw in senior midfielder Dan Hardy (9-10), too, who is having an All-America season.
All were instrumental in carving up the nation's stingiest defense, which was allowing only 5.33 goals per game at opening faceoff. Nims had two goals and six assists, Keogh a game-high four goals and Hardy a goal and two assists, rocketing several other shots off the goalpost.
The game turned into such a laugher that goalie John Galloway was pulled midway through the 2nd half. The Orange move to 6-1 and will now get ready for a Sunday match-up with the 5-3 Loyola Greyhounds.
Both parties should savor the experience because it might be the last time the two teams face each other for a while. With the impending Big East Conference alignment, SU was going to have to make some tough choices in their scheduling. One of those choices is to end their series with the Greyhounds. To be fair though, the decision had as much to do with Loyola's new conference alignment as Syracuse's:
[Loyola head coach Charley] Toomey said it was simply a matter of economics for both teams. While SU will have to travel to South Bend every other year beginning next season, Loyola will have it even worse in the combined ECAC/Great Western League. Trips to Denver and Air Force will be part of the deal for the Greyhounds.
SU leads the series 18-5.
Oh and if you want to reminder of how far lacrosse still has to go in terms of getting it's head on straight, check out this mid-season bracketology which has 3-3 Johns Hopkins as the #4 seed ahead of 4-1 Hofstra (who beat Princeton) and 6-2 Maryland. Winning games is actually 6th or 7th on the list of criteria for seeding, apparently.