The last regular season match-up between Syracuse and Loyola was about to go down as a monumental upset as the #2 Orange trailed the Greyhounds by four goals in the 4th quarter. Then Dan Hardy took over, scoring three goals in the final six minutes and sparking a 14-13 comeback win for SU.
Sophomore attackman Stephen Keogh also got the comeback rolling with 2 goals in a span of 50 seconds in the 4th. Keogh ended with 5 goals while Dan Hardy added 4 goals and an assist. Kenny Nims also contributed 2 goals and 2 assists.
The win was something of a tribute to former SU player Brain Crockett, who was killed on Friday in a car accident. Crockett was an attackman for the Orange from 2003-2006 and played on the 2004 national championship team.
With the win, the Orange remained #2 in the nation in the polls. Virginia remained #1 after surviving a seven (!!!) overtime game against Maryland. It was the longest game in NCAA history. Lax fans shouldn't sleep on Notre Dame either...the Irish are 7-0 and the only other unbeaten left, albeit against a mediocre schedule.
Oh and Johns Hopkins FINALLY leaves the Top Ten after dropping to 3-4 overall. It's rare for Johns Hopkins to be on the outside looking in but I wonder just how rare it is...
How rare? According to JHU Sports Information, the Jays had only found themselves out of the Top 10 for 11 weeks out of the 351 polls that the USILA has conducted since 1973. It’ll take a bit more to put them out of the rankings for the first time in school history (seriously - never been out of the Top 20. Ever) - but week No. 12 out of a possible 352 is a pretty big deal.
That's rare. Oh and Georgetown is 3-5 right now. All is right in the world of SU lacrosse.
Quint Kessenich also has the Orange as #2 in his Power Rankings, though he admits the Orange might not be the unbeatable they seemed to be:
Dan Hardy was the hero in Baltimore as the Orange survived a scare from a feisty Loyola squad. The gap between Virginia, Syracuse and the rest of the country is not as wide as I thought last week. All of a sudden the SU defense is looking suspect - seems like top caliber competition can get to double digits against the Orange.
Quint also has some, um, salacious thoughts on the Princeton Tigers (H/T: mcallj):
Princeton may have the nation’s best short stick defensive midfield with Josh Lesko and Brendan Reilly. I’m excited to watch their young poles take on Syracuse on Saturday in Giant’s Stadium.
NH, Quint. NH!
But Quint is right, the Orange will take on the 7-1 Princeton Tigers this weekend in the Big City Classic. Giants Stadium will host a trio of top-notch lacrosse games that also includes #1 Virginia vs. 8-3 North Carolina and Delaware vs. Hofstra. If you're a lacrosse fan in the area and you're not attending...you're dead to me.
Regardless of the event itself, it's nice to see SU vs. Princeton be a meaningful game again. Seems like the last couple of seasons one of the two teams was down and the game seemed to lose its luster. Expect this year's game to be a good one. And hey, if the Orange feel like they need a little energy boost for this one, maybe they want to recruit Jonny Flynn to help out. #1, he's available and #2, according to ESPN's Kyle Harrison, he'd make a good lacrosse player:
I'm going to go with sophomore superstar Jonny Flynn from Syracuse! He'd be absolutely perfect to play behind the goal to quarterback an offense, just like he does in basketball. Can you imagine people trying to cover him? It'd be an absolute nightmare. And, just from watching him play basketball, he seems like one of those athletes who is good at whatever he does, so I bet he'd pick up the sport pretty quickly.
Don't give him any ideas...we need fresh legs come November.