Marquette takes 11-9 Win over Hofstra on Road
from Press Release
HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. – The Marquette University men's lacrosse team played the role of spoiler Saturday, defeating Hofstra 11-9 at James M. Shuart Stadium in the Pride's season- and home-opener.
But pride was also on the line for the Blue & Gold as a number of Long Island natives celebrated their homecoming with MU's first victory of the season in front of a large Marquette contingent.
"First of all, Hofstra is a great place to play and awesome competition for our guys," said MU head coach Joe Amplo, a former Hofstra player and associate head coach. "It was more about the local kids we have on our team; it was special for them to play in front of their family and friends."
Marquette (1-1), which never trailed Saturday, set the tone early after winning its first two faceoffs, opening the game with two unanswered goals. Freshman Ryan McNamara notched his first collegiate tally to get MU on the board two minutes into the contest, and Kyle Whitlow made it 2-0 moments later.
Hofstra (0-1) came back to tie it up at 2-2 and again at 3-3 following McNamara's second goal of the half. MU goalie JJ Sagl then held the Pride scoreless the duration of the second quarter, making a handful of huge saves and allowing the Golden Eagles to build a 5-3 lead by halftime.
As snow started to fall, Tyler Melnyk doubled Marquette's advantage, 6-3, at the 11:30 mark of the third quarter with his third straight goal and Conor Gately made it 7-3 six minutes later.
Sagl, who finished with eight saves (.471 save percentage), and the MU defense held Hofstra scoreless for nearly 30 minutes before the Pride was able to get it to within two with a pair of goals in the final three minutes of the third quarter, including a man-up goal at the 1:38 mark.
MU went on a 3-1 run to open the fourth quarter and matched its largest lead of the game at 11-7 on a goal by Jerry Nobile with four and a half minutes remaining in regulation to help seal the victory. Hofstra tacked on a couple of late goals as the "We Are Marquette!" chant rang out from the stands.
Saturday's performance by the Golden Eagles was huge improvement from last week's season-opening loss at nationally ranked Lehigh. MU was paced offensively by Melnyk, who registered four points on three goals and an assist, and Whitlow also added a hat trick.
Eighteen of MU's 30 shots were on cage. The team also controlled the groundball battle 36-28 (MU led 21-12 at one point) and won 50 percent (12-of-24) faceoffs.
Other top individual performers included McNamara, who finished with two goals and an assist to go along with a team-high six groundballs. Long stick midfielder Liam Byrnes caused four turnovers and tallied five groundballs.
MU continues its seven-game road stretch to open the 2014 campaign next Saturday, Feb. 22 at No. 14 Ohio State.
Hempstead, NY – Sam Llinares recorded two goals and three assists for the Pride but Tyler Melnyk and Kyle Whitlow each scored three goals and Ryan McNamara added two to lead the Golden Eagles of Marquette to an 11-9 victory over Hofstra at James M. Shuart Stadium Saturday afternoon.
Llinares, an All-CAA Preseason selection in 2014, tallied goals in the first quarter and the fourth quarter and added all three of his assists in the second half to equal his career-high point total. He posted five points against Sacred Heart in 2013. Senior Lance Yapor and junior Mike Malave each added two goals for the Pride, who dropped their season opener. Junior goalie Chris Selva, an All-CAA second team selection in 2013, made seven saves in the Hofstra cage.
Melnyk, a senior from Canada, scored all three of his goals consecutively during a four goal spurt by the Golden Eagles late in the first quarter through late in the third quarters that turned a 3-3 contest into a 7-3 advantage. Melnyk also added an assist in the game. Whitlow, a sophomore from Canada, posted three man-up goals. McNamara, a freshman, scored twice in the first quarter and added an assist in the fourth quarter. Senior JJ Sagl, a Long Island product, made eight saves for the Golden Eagles, who evened their record at 1-1.
In a see-saw first period, Marquette, led by former Hofstra Associate Head Coach Joe Amplo, jumped out to a 2-0 lead only to see Pride senior Drew Coholan and Llinares tie the game for Hofstra. After McNamara notched his second of the contest, Hofstra senior Torin Varn, the Pride's leading scorer last season with 30 goals, tied the contest at 3-3 with 2:25 to play in the first.
Melnyk scored the first of his three straight goals with 40 seconds to play in the first and sophomore Conor Gately wrapped up the Marquette run at the 5:45 mark of the third to build a 7-3 advantage. Yapor ended Hofstra's 29:46 scoring drought with an unassisted tally with 2:39 to play in the period and Malave added a man-up goal 61 seconds later to close to 7-5 after three quarters.
After Marquette's Bryan Badolato and Malave exchanged goals in the first four minutes of the fourth quarter, Whitlow's two man-up goals boosted the Golden Eagle lead to 10-6. Llinares and Jerry Nobile then exchanged goals before the Pride added goals by Yapor and sophomore Korey Hendrickson in the final 48 seconds to close out the scoring.
Hofstra outshot the Golden Eagles 37-30 but Marquette won the battle on the ground, picking up 36 ground balls to the Pride's 28.
The Pride return to action next Saturday, February 22 when they travel to New Jersey for an ESPNU game at eighth-ranked Princeton. Game time is 11 a.m.
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