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Syracuse men’s lacrosse: Orange upset by Colgate, 12-9

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It’s Syracuse’s second ever season opening loss played in the Carrier Dome.

Syracuse Athletics

It’s not the start everyone was expecting for the Syracuse Orange. And you could say the same for the Colgate Raiders.

The Raiders came into the Carrier Dome and pulled off a wire-to-wire 12-9 upset of the Orange in front of 2,698 spectators in Colgate head coach Matt Karweck’s debut. Karweck, along with offensive assistant coach John Crawley, came over from the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Defensive assistant coach Chris Cooper came from the Binghamton Bearcats, so the entire staff has plenty of experience with playing Syracuse.

It was scoreless for the first five minutes of the game before Colgate put up three straight goals to start the scoring. Syracuse would put up two tallies in the final minute of the opening quarter, including one from Andrew Helmer in transition with five seconds left. But the Raiders would go on another 3-0 run to begin the second quarter before a David Lipka goal would send the Orange down 6-3 at halftime.

After Nicky Petkevich’s second of the game, Nate Solomon scored twice on man-up opportunities before Brendan Curry scored his second goal of the game to cut the Colgate lead to one with 13:37 left in the game. But the Raiders scored twice in a span of 21 seconds to extend their lead back to three. Brett Kennedy scored the next goal for Syracuse on transition, before Griffin Cook failed to control a pass and resulted in a goal by Colgate SSDM Will Blumenberg in transition. Solomon and Curry scored hat-trick goals to put Syracuse back down a goal, but Duncan Hoskinson and an empty netter by Petkevich sealed the deal.

Scoring and Stats


A Nicky Petkevich (4 Gs, 4 GBs)
M Duncan Hoskinson (3 Gs, 1 GB)
M Griffin Brown (1 G, 2 As, 4 GBs)
A Sam Cleveland (2 Gs, 2 GBs, 1 CT)
A James Caddigan (1 G, 1 GB)
M Will Blumenberg (1 G, 3 GBs, 1 CT)
M Matt Donovan (1 A)

D John Donohue (2 CTs)
D Jack Donaghue (1 CT, 2 GBs)
LSM Parker Baddley (1 CT, 1 GB)
M Danny Healey (1 CT, 1 GB)
LSM Nick Salameda (1 CT, 2 GBs)
M John McDonald (1 CT, 1 GB)

FOGO Malcolm Feeney (12-of-25 FOs, 6 GBs)
G Connor Mullen (11 saves, 9 GAA, 1 GB)


M Brendan Curry (3 Gs, 1 A, 1 CT)
A Nate Solomon (3 Gs, 1 GB)
M David Lipka (1 G, 1 A)
LSM Brett Kennedy (1 G, 3 GBs)
SSDM/LSM Andrew Helmer (1 G)
A Bradley Voigt (1 A)
M Jamie Trimboli (1 A)

D Tyson Bomberry (2 CTs, 5 GBs)
LSM Austin Fusco (2 CTs, 1 GB)
D Nick Mellen (1 CT, 2 GBs)
A Griffin Cook (1 CT, 3 GBs)
SSDM Peter Dearth (1 CT)
LSM Jared Fernandez (1 CT, 1 GB)

FOGO Danny Varello (5-of-12 FOs, 1 GB)
FOGO Jake Phaup (8-of-13 FOs, 8 GBs, 1 CT)
G Drake Porter (14 saves, 12 GAA, 1 CT)

Notes and Nuggets

  • Despite returning all three of their starting defenders and their four LSMs from a year ago, the defense still looks questionable, especially with the short sticks. One of which came against Brett Barlow, who used to be an LSM, who just ducked a shot from Griffin Brown.
  • The second goal was early in the fourth quarter when Hoskinson just got a half-step advantage on Grant Murphy, another converted SSDM that used to be an LSM. Two of the shorties from a year ago, Kevin Hutchings (left team) and Dami Oladunmoye (academically ineligible), would’ve helped.
  • Helmer was with Peter Dearth as the top two short sticks. But he also grabbed a long pole on man-down situations.
  • Colgate also found some mismatches with their attackman. In the first half, 6’5” Sam Cleveland was paired up against 6’ Tyson Bomberry. On his first goal, Cleveland executed a rocker dodge by leaning into Bomberry’s right side of his body to get inside for the goal. On his second goal, Cleveland got a step ahead of Bomberry and was able to beat Drake Porter right on the crease.
  • Colgate got the overall advantage on shots (41-36, 26-20 shots on goal) and ground balls (31-25).
  • Syracuse did get the advantage on caused turnovers (11-9) and faceoffs (13-12).
  • On the faceoffs, Danny Varello went 5-of-12 on his draws. Sure the junior lost more draws than he won, but the junior did a terrific job making those ground balls a 50-50 chance for his wingers. Head coach John Desko eventually put long sticks on both wings for the remainder of the first half in an effort to try to win faceoffs.
  • Jake Phaup did a good job on the X, going 8-of-13. The sophomore was able to win more draws to himself than Varello was able to. Overall, the faceoff unit went 9-of-14 on draws in the second half compared to 4-of-11 in the first half. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see ‘Cuse go with a two-man FO unit this season to find strengths and weaknesses against their opponents. It’ll also lessen the wear and tear on each guy.
  • Out of the 13 points recorded in the game, nine of them came from the midfield with Curry leading the way with a hat-trick and an assist. Nate Solomon was the only bright spot on the attack unit with his three-goal effort. Bradley Voigt recorded an assist on the Helmer goal with two shots and two turnovers. Stephen Rehfuss had three shots with two turnovers and didn’t do a whole lot outside of a hockey assist on the first Curry goal. Jamie Trimboli was also quiet throughout most of the game after his assist on Curry’s first goal. He had seven shots, tied with Lipka for most on the team.
  • The second midfield line was primarily Lucas Quinn, Matt Magnan, and Griffin Cook. That’s two freshmen and one sophomore. Cook also got some runs at attack. I was a little surprised to see Magnan out there on the second line.
  • I was expecting to see a little bit of Jacob Buttermore at midfield and Owen Seebold at attack in the game. Neither touched the field, which was shocking.
  • Another player I didn’t see on the field was defenseman Nick DiPietro. Matter of fact, he was all the way on the end of the bench next to backup goalie Luke Strang. From what I’ve heard, DiPietro is redshirting this season.
  • It’s obviously very early on what to think of this team. Tying Vermont (who lost to Navy on Saturday) at 11 after three quarters, losing to Yale 17-6 after three quarters in scrimmages may have told us something. But it’s also just one game and one loss. Some will overreact, but we should have a better assessment of this team in a few weeks.
  • Finally, a small nugget. If you had a good eye, you may have seen Curry wear the captain’s “C” on his #16 jersey. He’s not a captain this season. Last year’s #16, Ryan Simmons, was a captain.

What’s Next?

The Orange host the Albany Great Danes next Saturday at 4 PM on ACC Network Extra.

Expect the top 20 polls to come out sometime on Monday. Syracuse might be in the 15-20 range this week, but I didn’t rank the Orange at all in my top 20 for the IL Media Vote.