Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 3/3/15
From Press Release
Drexel’s Ryan Belka had five points as the Dragons raced out to a big first half lead and defeated Saint Joseph’s, 11-7, in difficult weather conditions at Vidas Field on Tuesday afternoon. The Dragons (1-4) picked up their first win of the season behind a 10-goal outburst in the first half. The Hawks fell to 2-3.
Graduate student attack Ryan McGee scored a team-best three goals for St. Joe’s while redshirt junior attack Kevin Forster (La Salle College High) added two scores.
Saint Joseph’s scored off the opening face-off just nine seconds into the game when Danny Manning got the Hawks on the board. However, that would be the last goal the Hawks would get for quite some time. The Dragons rattled off the next six goals, including four in the first quarter to take a 6-1 lead. Belka tied it up just 31 seconds after Manning’s goal. Belka then set up Mitch de Snoo for his third goal of the young season, giving the Dragons the lead for good. Jake O’Donnell set up Belka’s second goal midway through the first before Jules Raucci (Garnet Valley) closed the first quarter scoring, putting the home team up 4-1.
Drexel made it a six-goal run when Cole Shafer and Belka scored to open the second period. The Hawks finally broke the scoreless streak after more than 22 minutes when Ryan McGee’s unassisted tally cut the Dragons’ lead to 6-2. Drexel answered with four unanswered goals to end the half with a 10-2 lead. Joe Rainoldi, Raucci, Shafer and Robert Frazee found the net in the final 4:33 of the half.
After Frazee scored again just two minutes into the third, the Hawks turned the tide in the second half and slowly chipped away at the Dragons’ lead. Saint Joseph’s would score the next five goals of the game and would keep Drexel off the board for the final 28 minutes. Forster started Saint Joseph’s comeback with a man-up goal at the 6:24 mark of the third. Just 29 seconds later, Forster was at it again, this time scoring an even strength goal. The Dragons committed their fourth penalty of the quarter when they went offside. That led directly to Mcgee’s second goal of the game, cutting the Hawks’ deficit to 11-5.
McGee completed the hat trick early in the fourth quarter but the Hawks couldn’t add another until the final three minutes of the game when Mike Rastivo made it 11-7.
Drexel outshot the Hawks, 40-32, including a 26-8 advantage in the first half. Jimmy Joe Granito made his first start for the Dragons and made five saves in the cage. Dustin Keen (Downingtown West) had five of the Hawks’ nine saves as three different Saint Joseph’s players saw time in goal.
Nick Saputo took all 22 face-offs for the Dragons and won 15 of them. He led all players with six ground balls.