The nationally-ranked No. 17 St. Lawrence University men's lacrosse team rolled to a 10-4 win over SUNY Potsdam on a rainy and windy Tuesday afternoon at Hall-Leet Stadium in Canton, NY. The Saints were led by senior co-captain Davey Hovey, who had a career-high seven assists, and first-year face-off specialist Kirk Ryder, who won 14-of-16 draws in the contest.
St. Lawrence improves to 9-3 and picks up its seventh consecutive victory after outshooting the Bears 41-31 and closing with a 33-19 edge in ground balls. SUNY Potsdam (5-5) struggled to gain possession because of Ryder, and couldn't slow the Saints down in transition as they were a perfect 19-for-19 in clear tries.
"After a little bit of a slow start, we had some nice offensive tempo and ball movement, particularly early in the second half," said St. Lawrence head coach Mike Mahoney. "Davey did a great job finding open options and we finished our open looks. We did a tremendous job with our face-off unit, and our defense and goaltending was again very solid."
Both goaltenders, St. Lawrence's Jack Nuland and Potsdam's Stefan Sloma, were solid in the game as they finished with nine and 13 saves respectively. The home team scored three man-up goals, and junior Pierson Fowler was sharp offensively as well, scoring a hat trick in the win. Derek Frost led the Bears with two goals.
Fowler scored the lone goal of the opening quarter with 3:05 to go on a man-up try, as the Grosse Pointe Farms, MI native took a pass from Hovey and fired a shot that beat Sloma for his ninth of the season. Rookie stand-out Jeremy Vautour made it 2-0 on another man-up try only 1:10 into the second quarter from Hovey before the Bears got on the board on a goal by Frost only 1:45 later.
Hovey scored his only goal of the game at 13:53 of the second quarter, attacking from behind the net and squeaking a shot between Sloma and the post for a 3-1 St. Lawrence lead at intermission.
With Ryder giving the home team constant possession, St. Lawrence capitalized with four goals in the third period to add some insurance. Fowler's unassisted goal only :55 seconds into the third made it 4-1, while Alden Frelinghuysen and Tucker Garfield scored off passes from Hovey for a 6-1 lead. Frost and Fowler would exchange goals to bring the score to 7-2 after three quarters.
Senior Justin Ingram made it 8-2 with the opening goal of the fourth quarter only :21 seconds in, with Hovey earning his sixth helper of the game. Though Rob Kunz and Ed Doherty would score on Nuland to keep the Bears within four down 8-4 with 12:40 to play, junior Marc Perroni answered only :08 seconds after Doherty's tally to end the visitor's momentum for a 9-4lead. The goal, Perroni's second of the season, was assisted by Hovey right off a clean face-off win by Ryder.
Junior Zach Sloan would cap the game's scoring at 10-4, adding his second of the year in the final seconds of regulation.
First-year goaltender Nick Ford relieved Nuland for the final 1:56 and made two saves in his first appearance in a Saints uniform. Ryder closed with a game-high six ground balls for the Scarlet and Brown.
St. Lawrence will be in Liberty League action again on Saturday, April 20 when they host Rensselaer at 1:00pm. The team will be celebrating its "Senior Day," as the 14 members of the Class of 2013 will play their final regular season contest at Hall-Leet Stadium.