April 18, 2009

SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- The fourth-ranked Orange (10-2) survived a furious third-quarter rally to record its 10th win of the season, 15-13, against No. 20 Albany on Friday, April 17 at the Carrier Dome. The Great Danes outscored Syracuse, 8-1, in the third period, but the Orange tallied four goals in the final quarter to secure a two-goal victory. Senior midfielder Dan Hardy tied his career high with five points (3g, 2a) in the contest for Syracuse. Sophomore attackman Stephen Keogh also had three goals and two assists for five points. Senior attackman Kenny Nims finished with four assists to extend his point-scoring streak to 28 games.

Syracuse entered the third quarter leading 10-2, but the momentum swung Albany's way as Brian Caufield, Luke Cometti and Matthew Cushing each scored in the first five minutes of the period to cut the SU lead to five, 10-5. A goal by junior attackman Chris Daniello briefly halted the Albany rally, but Corey Small and Joe Resetarits combined for five unanswered goals to pull the visitors within one, 11-10, entering the fourth quarter. Small had three goals in the final seven minutes of the stanza and Resetarits contributed two.

With Albany charging, the momentum turned back in Syracuse's favor on a wild play to begin the fourth quarter. After the Great Danes secured the period's first faceoff, Albany defender Brendan Gleason attempted a pass back towards his own net to start a clear, but SU rookie Kevin Drew raced up from behind and checked his stick and ball fluttered into the empty Albany goal to make the score 12-10 with 14:54 left in regulation.

Drew's hustle play sparked a four-goal SU run that increased the Orange margin to 15-10. Hardy was critical during the stretch scoring a goal and feeding senior Matt Abbott for SU's final goal of the game.

Albany scored the three times in the span 4:44 to get within two, 15-13, with 2:50 remaining, but the Orange played keep away with the ball for long stretches in the final minutes to seal the win.

For Albany, Brian Caufield led the way with six points (1g, 5a), and Joe Resetarits and Corey Small each had four goals. Small's final goal, which came late in the fourth period, was the 100th of his career.

Freshmen goalies Drew DiCioccio and John Carroll each played a half for the Great Danes. Carroll made five saves in the second half as Albany mounted its comeback. He relieved DiCioccio, who allowed 10 first-half goals in his first career start.

The Orange appeared in complete control of the game in the first half. It outshot the Great Danes, 29-10, in the opening 30 minutes and won eight of the half's 11 faceoffs to build an eight-goal margin at the break.

Syracuse held an early 4-0 lead, scoring four times in the span four minutes midway through the first quarter.

The Orange lead swelled to 6-2 in the second quarter before Keogh and Hardy fueled a four-goal scoring spurt that increased the hosts' advantage to 10-2 at halftime. Keogh had two goals and an assist in the run, while Hardy scored once and also contributed a helper.

However, despite the deficit Albany would not go away and regrouped at the half to surge back into the game.

Junior Gavin Jenkinson helped the Orange to a 16-13 advantage at the faceoff X Friday. Jenkinson won 12 draws in the contest, including all seven in the first quarter. Syracuse also held the advantage in ground balls over Albany, 36-30.

The Orange returns to action on Saturday, April 25. Syracuse plays its final road game of the season at Massachusetts. Faceoff is slated for 1:30 at McGuirk Alumni Stadium. The contest will be televised live nationally on CBS College Sports.

Game Notes: The Orange improved to 7-0 all-time against the Great Danes ... All seven meetings have taken place at the Carrier Dome ... Abbott attempted his first faceoff of the year in the second quarter ... Senior faceoff specialist Jake Moulton returned to action after missing eight games due to injury and was 2-for-5 at the X ... Redshirt freshman Tim Desko tied his career high with two goals ... Keogh has scored at least three goals in eight of SU's 12 games this season.