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Men’s lacrosse: Red-hot @SJUHAWKS_MLax clinches tie for NEC title

Saturday, 19th April 2014

Categories Boy's/Men's, College, Posted 4/19/14
From Press Release

Redshirt junior attackman Ryan McGee (White Plains, N.Y./White Plains) and freshman attackman Michael Rastivo (South Setuaket, N.Y./Choate Rosemary Hall) tallied four goals and three assists apiece to lead 11 Hawks in scoring as the Saint Joseph’s men’s lacrosse team exploded for a 21-9 Northeast Conference victory over Sacred Heart on Saturday afternoon.

With the win, Saint Joseph’s clinches the 2014 NEC regular-season title and is set to host the 2014 Northeast Conference Championships from May 1-3. A win at Hobart next Saturday will clinch the title outright.

Saint Joseph’s has now hit the 10-win mark of the season and remains undefeated in conference action as the Hawks stand at 10-3 overall and 5-0 in the NEC. The Hawks’ 21 goals are the most scored by Saint Joseph’s in a single-game this season.

Rastivo netted two of his goals and one of his assists in the first 7:54 of play to lead the Hawks to a 6-2 run that spanned the first period. McGee and senior midfielder Johnny Simanski (Resiterstown, Md./Loyola Blakefield) added a goal and assist each during that run.

Saint Joseph’s continued to dominiate on the offensive end in the second period, outscoring the Pioneers 6-1 in the second 15:00 to take a commanding 12-3 lead into the halftime break. Junior midfielder Mike Dougherty (Malvern Prep) opened and closed the second-period scoring with a pair of tallies while senior Will Abbott (Chevy Chase, Md./Bullis School) scored his first goal of the season right off of a face-off win to push the Hawks ahead 8-3 with 12:23 remaining in the second.

Sacred Heart (5-8, 3-2 NEC) would chip back as the Pioneers recorded four of their nine total goals in the third period. After Simanski, junior midfielder Josh Cavanaugh (Springfield) and McGee combined for a 3-1 SJU run that put the Hawks up by 10 goals, 15-5, with 3:40 remaining in the third, Sacred Heart put together a 3-1 run of its own to pull to within eight goals, 16-8, heading into the fourth period.

However, Saint Joseph’s came sharp into the fourth as Rastivo and McGee pulled off a trio of plays that would continue the Hawks’ momentum throughout the remainder of the game. Rastivo netted his fourth goal of the game at the 12:14 mark to put the Hawks back ahead by nine, 17-8.

Abbott won the following face-off possession and sped down the field to find McGee, who burried his 29th goal of the season to put the Hawks back ahead by 10, 18-8.

Just under five minutes later, Rastivo found McGee for the second time on the day as the Hawks took a 19-8 lead into the final 12:08.

With 2:32 remaining, rookie attackman Robert Raucci (Garnet Valley) scored his first collegiate goal to give the Hawks their 20th goal of the game.

Sacred Heart’s Alec Dauses would net an unassisted tally with 1:08 to play, but Hawks’ junior attackman Matt Sarcona (Northport, N.Y./Northport) registered his fourth goal of the season on Abbott’s second assist of the game with 1:02 remaining in regulation, and that 21-9 score would stand as time expired.

McGee (4G, 3A) and Rastivo (4G, 3A) led 36 Hawks who saw action in today’s regular-season home finale. Sophomore attackman Pat Swanick (St. Joseph’s Prep) (3G), Dougherty (2G, 2A), and Simanski (2G, 1A) all registered multi-goal efforts. Abbott was good for one goal and two assists and went 11-of-24 from the face-off X en route to seven ground balls on the day. Freshman Danny Manning (Yorktown Heights, N.Y./Yorktown) went 6-of-11 from the X while junior defenseman Will Farrell (St. Joseph’s Prep) recorded a game-high eight ground balls and caused two turnovers.

Rookie goalkeeper T.J. Jones (Basking Ridge, N.J./Ridge) (4-1, 2-0 NEC) picked up his fourth consecutive win, making 14 saves – including nine in the final two periods – in a full-game effort.

For the game, Saint Joseph’s owned a 51-43 advantage in shots and 36-28 edge in ground balls. Sacred Heart won 18 of 35 total face-off opportunities, with four coming as a result of SJU violations at the X. The Hawks were 24-of-27 in clear attempts and 1-of-3 in EMOs, holding Sacred Heart to a scoreless 0-4 conversion rate on the day. The Hawks also committed just nine turnovers and forced 15 on the Pioneers.

Sacred Heart’s Cody Marquis (1G, 2A) and Alex Miller (2G, 1A) led the Pioneers in scoring.

Prior to the start of the game, Saint Joseph’s honored its four seniors – Abbott, midfielder Billy Annesley (The Haverford School), defenseman Jack Moran (Malvern Prep) and Simanski – for their dedication and commitment to the Saint Joseph’s men’s lacrosse program over the last four years.

Saint Joseph’s will conclude its regular season at Hobart next Saturday, April 26. Opening face-off at Boswell Field in Geneva, N.Y. is scheduled for 1:00 p.m.



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