Saturday's mid-day matchup was never in doubt for the Syracuse Orange as they pummeled the Colgate Raiders, 19-6. Syracuse now waits for their seeding, which will be announced on Sunday evening. Undoubtedly the Orange will be a top seed, maybe even the overall number one seed, and will have a home game in the first round of the NCAA Tournament, a week from Sunday.
Syracuse honored their senior class prior to today's game. The Orange players in their final season include: Chris Daddio, Billy Ward, Derek Maltz, Scott Loy, Drew Jenkins, Matt Harris, Pat Powderly, and Dominic Lamolinara. It will be tough to lose some of those guys, but it is comforting to know SU will return its entire starting attack unit as well as an excellent goaltender.
Syracuse only allowed the Raiders a handful of possessions in the first half and walked into the locker room up 10-3 with two periods to go. Colgate came out putting a long-pole on Hakeem Lecky, but it didn't matter as Lecky had two of the first four goals for Syracuse. Lecky finished his day with 2 goals on 6 shots. Colgate struggled to get any offensive opportunities throughout the first quarter. The Raiders finally got on the board with 1:40 remaining in the first period. While Syracuse's offensive pressure was unrelenting, Colgate didn't help themselves as they had a lot of problems passing and catching today. The Raiders turned the ball over 11 times, 7 of which were forced turnovers by the Orange. Colgate also found themselves on the man-down 5 times. As for the clearing situation, the ‘Gate had some trouble beating the Syracuse ride in the first half. The Raiders failed on 3 of 13 clears, but Syracuse gave up 3 of its own as well.
While the scoring for SU was fairly balanced, Kevin Rice, Dylan Donahue and Randy Staats all had hat tricks. Rice also picked up 4 assists on the day, and looked perfect QBing the offense from behind the net. It was also nice to see Jordan Evans pick up his second goal of the season in the first quarter.
Henry Schoonmaker had 2 goals on 2 shots and looked good on the wing during face-offs, picking up 2 groundballs. Chris Daddio's other wing, Peter Macartney, was physical on the face-offs and had a goal of his own. Macartney's goal came just 7 seconds into the second period after a Daddio face-off win. Daddio went 15-21 against a good Colgate FOGO, Alex Kinnealey. Mike Iacono took several face-offs as well towards the end of the game and finished up 2-5. Freshman Joe DeMarco went 2-2.
Colgate stayed with freshman goalie Brandon Burke until the fourth quarter. Brandon is the younger brother of former Brown goalie, and current Boston Cannon, Jordan Burke. Although the score was high, I was impressed by some of the saves Burke made on the crease against the SU attack, including a point-blank save on Randy Staats in the first quarter.
For Syracuse Dominic Lamolinara finished out his final regular season home game with 3 saves in the first half, giving up just 3 goals. Bobby Wardwell filled in for the third and part of the fourth periods. Wardwell, who is coming off a rough performance in the ACC Championship Game loss to Notre Dame, had 4 saves and did not allow a goal. Evan Molloy followed up Wardwell and saw a few minutes in the crease. Molloy was the 18th ranked goalie recruit in the country when he arrived on campus in September, and although he is a freshman, he is not unfamiliar with Syracuse. Molloy's father and grandfather both played for the Orange and his father still holds the career save record for SU goalies. Syracuse also played fellow freshman Tyler Avallone, who picked up one save.