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Syracuse Lacrosse: Previewing the St. John’s Red Storm

Syracuse and St. John’s faceoff on Saturday at 1 p.m. ET in Queens, NY. The Red Storm come into the game with a 1-4 record, looking to take down the 3-1 Orange.

St. Johns v San Diego State Photo by Bob Leverone/Getty Images

Last Year

In 2016, the Syracuse Orange DOMINATED the St. John’s Red Storm. The Johnnies only managed one tally per period on its way to a 15-4 loss to SU. In fact, Syracuse’s starter in net, Warren Hill, saw just five shots on goal through 45 minutes. The Red Storm turned the ball over 19 times and failed to clear on seven occasions while SU successfully killed all four man-down situations. St. John’s did not have an assist in the game.

Here are the highlights from last year’s game, check out Gale Thorpe’s goal at 35 seconds into the video.

This Year

Honestly, I don’t expect this game to be any more competitive.

The Red Storm come into the game with a 1-4 record. The only win for St. John’s was a 13-12, last minute victory over the Siena Saints, a program that SU pummeled 19-6.

This is the short of it: St. John’s has less offensive power than last season and can’t seem to stop opponents from putting up big shooting numbers. Expect a very lopsided game on Saturday. On the positive side, we could see more of the depth of the SU roster.

However, the Red Storm did have an interesting midweek trip to the New York Stock Exchange, ringing in the opening bell.


School: St. John’s

Nickname: Red Storm

Coach: Jason Miller

Location: Queens, NY

Conference: Big East

Game Location: Queens, NY

Game Time: 1:00 PM

Television/Radio: ESPN3 TK99/105

Weather: Partly Cloud, 31/19 Degrees, 14 MPH Wind

All-Time Syracuse Record Vs. Opponent: 10-0

Previous Matchup: 15-4 SU Win

Opponent Ranking: N/R

Quick Facts

2017 Record: 1-4

2017 Conference Record: N/A

2016 Record: 2-12

2016 Conference Record: 1-4

2016 Conference Postseason Results: N/A

2016 NCAA Tournament Postseason Results: N/A

2016 Team Statistics

Total Goals– Shot Attempts: 37-160

Total Opponent Goals– Shot Attempts: 65-203

EMO Goals (Percentage): 6-13 (.462)

EMO Goals Against (Percentage): 9-17 (.529)

Team Shooting Percentage: .231

Opponent Shooting Percentage: .320

Shots on Goal Percentage: .512

Opponent Shots on Goal Percentage: .640

Groundballs: 129

Opponent Groundballs: 153

Turnovers: 77

Caused Turnovers: 54

Faceoffs: 63-117

Clearing Percentage: 76-94 (.809)

Opponent Clearing Percentage: 90-97 (.928)

Penalties: 17 PIM


The Red Storm host Syracuse without last season’s leading point scorer, attackman Eric DeJohn. It was expected that Jason DeBenedictis would take over, as he had 33 goals in 2016, however the 2016 All-Big East second teamer has not played since the second game of the season.

With DeBenedictis out, the bulk of the scoring has been pretty spread out, but freshmen twin brothers Mike and Joe Madsen are currently the leading scorers with five goals each. Last week Joe Madsen had three goals and an assist as well as the game winner with 27 seconds remaining to earn St. John’s a 13-12 win over the Saints. For his effort the freshman was named the Big East Freshman of the Week. Colin Duffy started off the season at midfield but was moved up to attack in place of DeBenedictis and has four scores through five games. The trio has scored 38% of all Red Storm goals this year, and I would expect them to be the biggest threats on the field.

There’s not a ton of game film on the twins but I’ve noticed a few things from their high school highlights. Mike likes to dodge towards the crease, mostly from X but also from the wing. He is not afraid to make contact on the crease either. His brother Joe’s favorite looks like an on the run, off balance shot while moving up from GLE or X and moving away from the goal. Joe doesn’t appear to need a lot of room or a great angle to get off a good snipe.


Eight St. John’s players have taken over 10 shots. Of that eight, only three are above the .300 mark in shooting percentage while four are below .200. To put that in perspective, six SU players have 10+ shots while two are above .500 in shooting percentage and only two are below .300. Syracuse averages 24.75 shots on goal per game while St. John’s is putting just 16.4 shots on goal per game. To make things a little more obvious, St. John’s is 62nd in shooting percentage and 63rd in the country in scoring offense.

Nick Heller is the only midfielder to start every game this season. The senior from Beverly Hills, CA has just four goals on 26 shots, 10 of which came in a one goal performance against Saint Joseph’s. Another senior, Scott Scannell, should get the start on Saturday. Scannell has just two goals and has only put two shots on net this year. I would expect the third starter to be Jackson O’Leary, a senior out of Westfield, NJ, although we may also see Corey Haynes, a junior from nearby Kirkville, NY.


The faceoff unit is actually pretty decent, sitting 25th in the nation with a .538 faceoff winning percentage. That being said, only one St. John’s opponent, Rutgers, is in the top 40 of faceoff winning percentage. Junior Justin Corpolongo has taken the majority of duels at the X this year, going 38-71 overall. He has been the primary faceoff guy for the last three years but has never surpassed the .500 faceoff winning percentage. Against Siena, Corpolongo went 15-24 while Ben Williams went 17-20. In last season’s matchup, Corpolongo went 2-14 overall and 2-12 against Ben Williams with the St. John’s faceoff crew getting manhandled going just 4-22. Backing him up should be Paul Tornatore and Erik Suh.


Defensively, the Red Storm have started the same three players throughout the year: Dante Addona, Tim Kiel, and Pat Smyth. St. John’s has allowed 13 goals per game, 54th in scoring defense in the country. This is a group that has also had a lot of trouble clearing the ball, with just a .809 success rate. The starting defensive unit, including goalie Daniel Costa turn the ball over an average of twice per game. Syracuse has been pretty good on the rides holding opponents to a .851 clearing percentage


Daniel Costa will be between the pipes for St. John’s. The junior began his career with the Fairfield Stags, appearing in just two games his freshman year, and redshirted in his sophomore year at St. John’s. Daniel Costa has faced 130 shots on goal this year, that’s an average of 26 per game and more than 4 more per game than Evan Molloy has had to deal with. In fact, Costa has made the 12th most saves per game in Division I, but has also given up the eighth most goals. Ultimately, he is 51st in goals against average in the country. What that tells us is the defense puts a ton of pressure on their goalie.

The Syracuse Orange will take on the St. John’s Red Storm on Saturday at 1:00 PM in Queens, NY. The game can be seen on ESPN3 and heard on TK99/105. Of course you can always follow me for updates @Orangelax.