Saturday, February 28, 2015

Syracuse Women's Lacrosse Suffers First Setback of the Season with 10-9 Loss to Boston College

Story By Robin Deehan
Photo by

SYRACUSE, N.Y. – The No. 7/6 Boston College Eagles edged the No. 3/2 Syracuse Orange 10-9 Saturday afternoon in the Carrier Dome to hand SU its first loss of the season.

13 team turnovers, lack of possession and the complete shutdown of SU’s most effective scorer plagued the Orange women as they fell to 5-1 overall and 1-1 in the ACC.

“I give Boston College a lot of credit for sticking it out, they won a close game and they got it done,” Syracuse head coach Gary Gait said. We're still trying to find our identity with the roster we have and who is going to do what. We got to experience a very good shutoff on the offensive end and we turned around and made some mistakes and gave them the ball for a while and you don't see it for another five minutes. They definitely controlled the game and played at their pace and I congratulate them."

First Half

Syracuse jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the first three minutes of play with Halle Majorana, Taylor Gait and Kailah Kempney each finding the back of the cage.

But BC quickly regained composure and answered back by scoring three unanswered goals to tie it up in the span of five minutes.

SU and BC would go goal-for-goal on the next three scores giving SU the 5-4 advantage with 12:54 left before the half. 

But with just :23 seconds left on the clock, Mikaela Rix drove and dished to Covie Stanwick who faked high and shot low past SU keeper Kelsey Richardson to send both teams into the locker room tied at five.

Second Half Possession

The Eagles saw their first lead of the game scoring just 1:55 into the second half.

SU and BC traded the next six goals and headed into the final 10 minutes of play tied at eight.

But that changed at the 7:26 mark when BC’s Stanwick dodged an SU defender for an open shot she was able to punch in, to steal the lead back for the Eagles.

The next draw was won by SU but Taylor Gait’s equalizer was denied by the post.

SU's Taylor Poplawski scooped up the ground ball but the BC defense forced a turnover and maintained possession for three and a half minutes.

“The game plan was to just be really smart with our possessions and to try to lengthen the possession time so that we could wait for the right opportunity because you can’t get into a shootout with Syracuse because you will lose every time,” Boston College head coach Acacia Walker said.

During this crucial BC possession, the SU defense applied more aggressive one-on-one defensive pressure but were blanked when BC’s Stanwick found Caroline Margolis wide open in front of the cage putting the Eagles up 10-8 with 1:28 left to play.

“At the end of the game when a team is trying to stall and just spread out the field and pass around, it’s probably the hardest thing to play with in the last minutes,” SU defender Mallory Vehar said.  “You need the ball back and you are busting your butt so it’s definitely frustrating to say the least.”

On SU’s very next possession, Riley Donahue slipped one past BC keeper Zoe Ochoa with 44 seconds remaining to put the Orange back within one.

But BC’s Rachel Igoe won the draw control and played keep away as time expired giving the Eagles the upset win to improve to 4-0 on the season and 1-0 in the ACC.

“The great thing is they don’t hand out trophies in February that’s for sure, and we have an incredible schedule to go out and get better,” Gary Gait said.

The Treanor Effect

Junior Kayla Treanor, who currently leads the nation in points this season with 25, was face guarded all game and was held to no goals, no assists and no shots on goal.

“We put one of our biggest, strongest, most mentally tough kids on her [Treanor] and just told her to shut her down, try to not let her get the ball,” Walker said. “She’s arguably one of the best players in the country, if not the best, we have to do everything we can to stop her she’s just too good.”

Treanor, one of the 50 members on the 2015 Tewaaraton Award watch list, only recorded one draw control and one turnover in the Orange loss.

“She usually does pretty well against a face-guard,” Gary Gait said. “I think she just got frustrated and it kind of took her out of the game a little bit.”

Majorana led all Orange women with four points on two goals and two assists and Taylor Gait chipped in with a pair of goals. 

Stanwick and Margolis each recorded four points for the Eagles.

Boston College Makes History

Saturday afternoon marked the first time in 13 meetings between the Orange and the Eagles that BC came away with the victory.

“It marks history for Boston College lacrosse, I think the biggest thing is that it makes them proud to be a Boston College Eagle and to be a party of history as a team is incredible,” Walker said. “We have a ton of individual records at school but no one cares about that, we only care about the wins and today was a big day for us.”

For Walker it was also personal, she was a former player for Gary Gait when he was an assistant coach at Maryland.  

“I’ve looked up to Gary my whole life, I’ve tried to emulate him in almost everything I do, he’s just a phenomenal coach and it feels good to win, but I’ve got to give all the credit to my girls,” Walker said.

Up Next

The Orange women will face their first road test Saturday, March 7 when they travel to College Park to face No. 1 Maryland.

The last time these two teams met was May 25, 2014 in the NCAA Division I National Championship game at Johnny Unitas Stadium in Towson, Maryland.

The Orange fell 15-12.

Orange Women Suffer First Loss of Season

Story by Thomas Zhou
Photos by Jiayang Zhang

Syracuse, N.Y-
  The ball slowly rolled out of  bounds as time ran out. Syracuse women’s lacrosse team had failed to get possession to tie the game at last.

The Orange lost to Boston College, 10-9, on Saturday afternoon at the Carrier Dome. The Eagles snapped the Orange’s five game winning streak. Syracuse dropped to 5-1 after its first loss in the season.  BC improved to 4-0.

“We have to figure out our identity,” SU head coach Gary Gait said. “We have to get better on lacrosse IQ. Get smarter and understand the game much more on both ends. The great thing is that they don’t hand out trophies in February. We have an incredible schedule to go out and get better.”

Orange falls short chasing in the end

BC's Caroline Margolis scored her fourth goal with 1:28 left, giving the Eagles a 10-8 lead. Kailah Kempney won the draw for the Orange. Kayla Treanor, the country’s leading scorer, could do little with the ball for she was double-guarded, or even tripled. She passed the ball to teammates. Then Halle Majorana’s pass found Riley Donahue, who volleyed the ball and sent it to the cage when sandwiched by BC goalie Zoe Ochoa and a defender. Donahue’s first goal in the afternoon cut the margin to one, with 44 seconds left.

But that was all Syracuse could do. Rachel Igoe won the last draw control for the Eagles and they started to kill time. Syracuse almost got the ball when a player knocked down the ball from an Eagle, but a foul was called for dangerous check. BC kept possession until a long pass run out of the bounds, but time was up.

The Eagles circled and celebrated for their first victory over Syracuse in 13 matchups.

“In the end of the game, when the team tried to stall and just pass around, it was probably the hardest to play,” Kempney said. “… Definitely frustrating.”

First Half: Strong start ends up with tie

Syracuse started the afternoon with a 3-0 lead in the first three minutes. Halle Majorana beat Ochoa with a shot near the post. Taylor Gait created space with her run and scored the second goal, before Kempney converted a free position shot.

However, BC responded with a 3-0 run to tie the score. And each time the Orange took the lead later, the Eagles answered.

Kelly Cross scored for the Orange on a Majorana assist. 104 seconds later, Mikaela Rix escaped two Syracuse defenders and scored. The Eagles came back again after Majorana’s goal. This time Rix’s pass found an unguarded Covie Stanwick, whose goal tied the game at five, with 23 seconds left.

Second Half: Orange Fails to Duplicate BC’s Comeback

The Eagles took the lead and the Orange became the chaser in the second half, but Syracuse could not accomplish what BC had done in the first half.

Taylor Gait’s unassisted goal tied the score at six. Lisa Rogers' at seven. Taylor Paplawski at eight. After Stanwick and Margolis scored two consecutive goals for the Eagles, the Orange responded with only Donahue's goal in the final 88 seconds.

“It reminded me a lot of a basketball game,” Coach Gait said. “Coming down to the last couple of plays…They finish now and we are playing catchup. We get one back. We can’t quite get the ball again, and time runs out. It reminds me a lot of a basketball finish.”

Up next

After starting the season with six home games, Syracuse will have three games on the road, starting with a game against the national defending champion Maryland. The game will begin at noon on March 7.

Pictures: Boston College ends Syracuse's five-game winning streak, 10-9

Photos by Jiayang Zhang

Syracuse, N.Y - the Boston College Eagles cane into the Carrier Dome Saturday and upset the previously undefeated Syracuse University Women's lacrosse team. Here is a look at the game in pictures. Click on any photo to start slide show.


Friday, February 27, 2015

Reliving the "Miracle" 35 Years Later

Surviving Members 1980 Men's Ice Hockey Team (c) Alan Key
By Alan Key

Lake Placid, N.Y-  In February, 1980 the Soviet National team declined a request to delay its highly anticipated semifinal medal round Olympics match against the United States Hockey team to prime time in the U.S. to accommodate television coverage.

The result: The game was tape-delayed on ABC. Only audiences in Canada and small Northeast markets along with those in attendance saw the game live.

Fast forward 35 years.

Yogi Berra "once quipped "It's deja vu all over again," and so it is. Due to International Olympic Committee regulations and fees regarding Olympics-related content, the long awaited return of American ice hockey's "golden" boys to Lake Placid would not be broadcast anywhere.

Coming back at last

More than 5,000 fans crammed into the beloved "barn" known as Herb Brooks arena this past weekend to catch a glimpse of history.

Patti and Bob Gould (c) Alan Key
Patti Gould and her husband Paul returned for the first time since Patti worked for Pinkerton Security during the 13th Winter Olympics.

"We were not at the game, I was working," Gould said, "But we found out the weekend before this one (Feb. 14, 1980) I was going to have a baby...sort of our own miracle."

"Why now?" was the biggest question on the mind of those attending the news conference early Saturday afternoon? Mike Eruzione, captain of the gold medal winning team, summed it up with five words.

"No one ever asked us," Eruzione said, which drew a chuckle from inside the media circle.

Dave Silk, USA hockey right winger, gave a more inclusive answer.

"I think it's exceedingly tough to get 20 guys schedules all to match up," Silk said before clearing his throat, "I think the passing of Bobby(Suter) galvanized us to get together."

U-S-A! U-S-A!

The night began with thunderous roars of U-S-A! U-S-A! The lights dimmed and 11-time Emmy winning broadcaster for the Phoenix Coyotes Todd Walsh spoke of how he has waited for this moment since he was sixteen years old watching the game in his living room in Rochester, NY, before introducing surviving members of the "Miracle on Ice" team.

Throughout the evening video montages and personal anecdotes told the story of how defeating the Soviet team came to fruition. There were tears of both joy and sadness as one by one each player recounted his recollection from February 22, 1980.

One theme resonated as the microphone passed hand to hand.

"People remember where they were for the  Kennedy assassination, the Challenger explosion, and 9/11," Eruzione said, "but people come up to us and say I remember when and it's and positive."

For the first time the team collectively watched the final seconds tick off to the 4-3 victory before hearing the immortal words of Al Michaels "Do you believe in miracles? Yes!"

Somber salute

It was a somber moment because for all the excitement, the group of greying men knew they were not whole. On Sept. 14,2014, Mark Johnson, who played center, received a call that Bob Suter had died of heart failure.

Bob Suter Jersey Ceremony (c) Alan Key

Following a short highlight video, Suter's jersey was raised to the rafters where it will hang for future generations to admire.

The silent crowd was asked once more to roar the chant U-S-A! as a final salute to Suter, before closing out the night with the singing of the national anthem.

The near-capacity crowd left the arena swiftly, leaving only the ghosts of Olympics past to roam the hallowed halls.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Syracuse Escapes Weak Second Half and Extends Winning Streak

Story and Photos by Thomas Zhou
Syracuse, N.Y-

Gary Gait, Syracuse women’s lacrosse head coach, started the post-game interview by saying “what a game” four times.

No. 3/2 Syracuse got outscored, 6-3, in the second half against unranked UConn. SU saw a four-point first-half lead shrank into only one three times in the second half, but managed to hold on for a 12-11 win. 

Syracuse senior attack Kailah Kempney controlled the draw after UConn’s last goal at 1:17 mark. The Huskies strove for the possession of the ball but was called for a foul. Syracuse maintained that possession and thus the lead to the end of the game. The Orange improved to 5-0 after the victory at the Carrier Dome on Wednesday night. 

“That team played hard,” Gait said. “They never gave up. They fought. They played us tough today and I got to get UConn a lot of credit on their effort today.”

Syracuse junior Kayla Treanor contributed five goals, two of which came in the second half. Halle Majorana had two goals and three assists. Kempney won 13 of Orange’s 19 draw controls, where the Orange led the Huskies by 14. 

However, Syracuse committed 23 turnovers, the most of the season. It also had 27 fouls.

“I have never seen so many turnovers and unforced errors in a home game like that in a long long time,” Gait said.

Intense Second Half

Syracuse closed out a 9-5 first half with a 3-0 run, including a Treanor goal as time ran out. The Orange kept the momentum at the beginning of the second by shooting four times in the first five minutes. However, the Huskies' goalie Shannon Nee saved all three shots that were on target. She made seven saves in that half, frustrating the Orange who outshot the Huskies, 13-9, in that period. 

Kempney finally beat Nee with a bounce shot and Syracuse took a 10-6 lead with 20:32 left. However, UConn scored three goals in the next 11 minutes, firing up its fans. Treanor then scored for the Orange on a Kelly Cross’ assist. Forty-four seconds later, UConn cut the Orange lead to one again. Treanor converted a free position shot, before UConn's Emily Anderson’s first goal of the game made it a one-point game for the third and last time.

“I just ended up with the ball,” Treanor said, crediting her teammates for creating opportunities for her. “I don’t think it had anything to do with myself.” 

Kelsey Richardson shook her head when looking at the stat sheet. The Orange goalie also had a busy evening. UConn launched 20 shots in the game and Richardson had five saves. 

“I thought I had a lot more than five saves,” she said, eliciting some laughter from her teammates at the media opportunity after the win. 

Up Next

This is the second time in the season that the Orange has won by one point. Syracuse defeated No. 8 Virginia two days ago at home, 14-13. 

Syracuse will take on another ranked team, No.7/6 Boston College on Saturday. The ACC rivalry game starts at noon in the Carrier Dome.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Orange Upsets No. 9 Notre Dame On The Road

By Lizzy Gomez

South Bend, Ind. While the Syracuse Orange won’t make it into any final four brackets this year, it headed into its final four games of the season with a chance to put another win against a ranked opponent on its resume.

And on Tuesday night, the Orange did just that.

Syracuse pulled off the upset on the road against No. 9 Notre Dame inside the Joyce Center by a final score of 65-60 for its biggest win of the season.

The victory comes just six days after the Orange defeated No. 12 Louisville in the Carrier Dome.

Coach Jim Boeheim said despite making some costly mistakes, his team battled for the win and didn’t allow the Fighting Irish to get comfortable on offense at any point during the game.

“It was a tremendous win for us,” Boeheim said. “They’re a very, very good offensive team. but we did a good job with their offense tonight.”

The Orange pulled off the victory even after senior Rakeem Christmas, who averages 18 points per game, fouled out of with 5:18 left in the second half.

Christmas Reaches Milestone

Before Christmas went to the bench for the final minutes of play, he racked up 14 points and 12 rebounds for his 11th double-double of the season.

With the performance, Christmas now has over 1,000 points in his SU career.

“Everyone stepped up,” Christmas said. “It’s not just me out there — everyone is playing hard.”

Three other Syracuse players also scored in double-digits for the Orange in the victory.

Johnson Leads Scorers, Cooney, and Gbinije Produce

With Christmas in foul trouble for much of the game, sophomore BJ Johnson helped the Orange bring home the win with a 19-point effort, which ties his career high.

Johnson said the improvements in his play all come down to confidence.

“I think I’m just playing real confident right now,” Johnson said. “My teammates are confident in me, as well.”

Johnson went 7-of-13 from the field, making two shots from behind the arc.

Senior Trevor Cooney and junior Michael Gbinije also made baskets from long-range, one coming from Cooney with just over two minutes left in the game after the Irish cut the SU lead down to just two points.
Cooney’s three-pointer gave the Orange a 54-49 advantage, which he quickly bumped up to 56-49 after a layup just 24 seconds later.

Cooney ended the night with 11 points, while Gbinije put 12 on the scoreboard for Syracuse, along with six steals.

The Final Minutes

SU took a seven point lead over the Fighting Irish after Cooney’s basket in the paint at the 1:43 mark.

After some free throws and a Notre Dame three-pointer, the Orange had just a two-point lead over Notre Dame with 39 seconds on the clock.

Gbinije threw the ball down the court to Johnson, who went for a dunk, got the basket and drew the foul.

After Johnson completed the three-point play, Syracuse took a 62-57 lead with 30 seconds left in the game, prompting a slew of Fighting Irish fans to head for the exits.

“[Johnson] was terrific tonight,” Boeheim said. “He was a huge difference in the game.”

Duke, Take 2

Its biggest win of the season puts the Orange at 18-10 overall and 9-6 in conference play as it prepares for this year’s second meeting with No. 4 Duke (24-3, 11-3) on the road.

After putting up a solid effort against the Blue Devils in a loss on Valentine’s Day in the Dome, Syracuse heads back down to Cameron Indoor Stadium for another chance to hand Coach K and his team a loss on Saturday at 7 p.m.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Women's Lacrosse Improves to 4-0

By Jessica Eley

Syracuse, N.Y. -- Kayla Treanor's five goals helped lead the Syracuse Orange to a 14-13 win over the Virginia Cavaliers (1-2, 0-1 ACC) Monday night at the Carrier Dome.

Erica Bodt and Devon Collins had two points each, five more players had one goal and Halle Majorana finished with four assists.

"This was a great first test for us against a Top 10 opponent," head coach Gary Gait said. "We're just happy to get out of there with a W."

First Half

The No. 3/3 Orange (4-0, 1-0 ACC) got off to a slow start against the No.8/9 Cavaliers. Halfway through the first half, Syracuse had only scored one goal to Virginia's four.

During the media timeout, Gait regrouped his team. He said he just told the women to play the game.

"They were just standing and watching and not really driving hard to the net," Gait said.

SU finally scored on a Lisa Rogers goal, after being dry for more than ten minutes. Three more goals were scored by Riley Donahue and Treanor in less than one minute to give the Orange the lead.

Senior goalie, Kelsey Richardson, would only allow one more Cavalier point in the half.

"Our defense was playing well, our offense was playing well," Richardson said. "I just really wanted to make sure that we had all the opportunities that we would to keep that lead to secure the win."

Syracuse ended the half leading 8-5 after scoring twice in the last 24 seconds.

Second Half

Much like the first half, the Cavaliers got off to a quick start, scoring during the first minute. But SU responded with a goal of its own.

The teams exchanged scoring back and forth throughout the second half.

"Lacrosse, like coach said. is a game of runs,"senior Mallory Vehar said . "So the team goes up by a couple, we just need to make sure we're balancing.If they got up by a couple, then we needed to stop the offense from scoring, that's the goal."

After a goal from Virginia's Casey Bocklet, Syracuse only led by one with just over two minutes to play.

SU had possession, but a turnover by Majorana gave the ball back to UVA. As the Cavaliers lobbed the ball down the field, Erica Bodt caused a turnover and SU was recovered the ball to end the game.

Vehar said she felt relieved at the end. "Oh yeah, I thought I was going to have a heart attack and then the feeling went away,"Vehar said.


Syracuse will face off against the UConn Huskies at the Dome on Wednesday at 6 p.m..

Monday, February 23, 2015

No. 2 Syracuse Holds Off No. 11 Army 12-9 in the Orange's Biggest Test Yet

Story by Robin Deehan
Photo by Lauren Williams

SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- The No. 2 Syracuse men’s lacrosse team fought its way to a 12-9 victory over No. 11 Army Sunday night at the Carrier Dome.

“We had to work hard for all of our shots, thank goodness Dylan [Donahue] was shooting so well tonight, that really helped our cause,” Syracuse head coach John Desko said.  “We went against a good Army team, had to work for everything, and I think we come out as a better lacrosse team at the end of the day.”

The Black Knights stayed with the Orange for the majority of the game tying it up six different times, never letting the Orange get ahead by more than three goals and even taking the lead at one point in the third quarter.

“It came down to possession time, the amount of time Syracuse had the ball,” Army head coach Joe Alberici said. “They’re a terrific team and that was the end result, a 12-9 finish for them, congratulations Syracuse they are a great team.”

Home Grown High School Teammates Turned Rivals

The game between the two in-state teams showcased a goal-for-goal battle between former West Genesee high school teammates Dylan Donahue for Syracuse and John Glesener for Army. 

“He’s a good friend,” Donahue said. “It was fun to play with him.”

Glesener found the back of the cage first getting Army on the board early just five minutes in, to tie the game at one.

But less than two minutes later, Donahue answered by giving the lead back to the Orange scoring off a feed from Skaneateles alum Kevin Rice. 

Donahue would also close out the first quarter, scoring off a clever behind the back pass from Randy Staats with five seconds left on the clock.

The next goal wouldn’t be scored for another ten minutes thanks to stellar saves by both goalkeepers. 

“Bob [Wardwell] has complete control of the defense,” Desko said. “He’s playing very well for us.”

Glesener was the one to break the scoring drought five minutes before half time when Army went man-up due to an SU penalty, bringing Army to within one.

One minute later Army tied it at four on a goal from A.J. Canara.

But Donahue wouldn’t let that stand and scored unassisted with 2:55 left in the second quarter sending the Orange into the locker room with a 5-4 lead.

“He [Donahue] works well with the group and we needed him to come through with some points tonight and he did, so it was great to see,” Desko said.

With 2:49 left in the third quarter Donahue netted his fourth goal of the game to put the Orange up 10-7.

Glesener hit back at the start of the fourth quarter to bring the Black Knights to within two, but Donahue came through again scoring unassisted with 10:22 left to play giving the Orange the three goal lead.

Donahue finished with six points on a season-high five goals and one assist for the Orange.

Army’s Glesener found success with his sidearm sniper shot finishing with four goals of his own.

Williams Continues to Dominate

Faceoff specialist Ben Williams continued his dominance at the X winning 21 of the 25 faceoffs that he took against three different Army players, including the first 11 in a row.

“Our faceoff unit, the three of us, every time we walk out there we’re going to get that ball for our guys especially when it’s back and forth like that,” Williams said.  “Our offense and defense played a really tough game and it was fun to be a part of it.”

Along with his 21 faceoffs Williams also picked up a team high 13 ground balls.

Williams’ ability to gain possession of the ball allowed six different Orange men to find the back of the cage.

“I thought Williams’ was certainly the MVP of the game he played terrific and gave them a lot of opportunities,” Alberici said.

Staats also had a big game for the Orange finishing with six points on two goals and four helpers while Rice also netted a pair with one helper. 

Hakeem Lecky, Nicky Galasso and Henry Schoonmaker had one apiece.

“We’ve all played with each other for a while so we all have a lot of experience,” Donahue said.  “We like playing with each other, we know where the other person is going to be especially with our whole offense and middies.”

Wardwell had 11 saves on the day as the Orange improved to 3-0 while the Black Knights dropped to 3-1.

Up Next

The Orange will finish its four game home stand next Sunday at noon, opening ACC play against the No. 6 Virginia Cavaliers at the Carrier Dome.

Virginia is 3-0 heading into the Top 10 matchup.

Faceoffs Make the Difference: Syracuse Downs Amy 12-9

By Lauren Williams

Syracuse, N.Y. -- After trading goals for much of the Sunday night's matchup, the No. 2 Syracuse Orange pushed through the tough defense of No. 11 Army to take the game 12-9. The Black Knights suffered their first loss of the season, dropping to 3-1 as the Orange move to 3-0. Ben Williams continued to be a dominant force on the field for the Orange. The sophomore secured 21 of 25 faceoffs against the Black Knights giving the Orange more opportunities to score.

Redshirt junior Dylan Donahue netted a team-high five goals, while seniors Kevin Rice and Randy Stasts tucked away two each. Redshirt seniors Nicky Galasso, Hakeem Lecky and Henry Schoonmaker rounded out the scoring for the evening with one apiece. Here is the game in photos: