March 22, 2014

Steady Colgate Outpaces Navy, 10-7

from Press Release

ANNAPOLIS, Md. – Eric Foote's second career hat trick and the second in as many games for Brendon McCann helped No. 18 Colgate get past Navy, 10-7.

The Raiders trailed 3-1 late in the first quarter when Kevin Adams, Foote and McCann turned in a three-goal flurry that pushed Colgate in front 4-3 early in the second stanza. The Raiders scored three straight goals on three separate occasions, much to the delight of Colgate head coach Mike Murphy.

"One of the things we've been talking about all year with this team is consistency, and for the first time all year we got a consistent effort off both sides of the ball," Murphy said. "The offense was excellent in that it took what Navy gave us. We worked really well and patiently to achieve the goals we got.

"Eric and Brendon had their best games of the season so far."

Foote finished with four points and McCann three. Foote's previous hat trick came last year at Lafayette during his rookie campaign, while McCann now has eight. The senior scored three goals in Tuesday's narrow loss to third-ranked Cornell.

Most Complete Game
Adams finished with two goals, while Ryan Walsh and Cameron Williams added one goal apiece.

"The guy who might get put to the back burner a little bit because he was 1-1 – that may have been Ryan's most complete game as well," Murphy said. "He was dodging, he was initiating, they were double-teaming him and he was getting the ball out of his stick.

"He had a real command of the offense today and was able to distribute the ball. He may not have gotten the assists, but his play generated a lot of offense for us."

Murphy also doled out the compliments for Williams and Matt Clarkson, who each posted a pair of assists.

"It was good to see our offense kind of start to get going," Murphy said. "Six of 10 goals were assisted; we're sharing the ball very well."

Defense Settles Down
Navy jumped in front 2-0 in the first six minutes and led 3-1 when Tucker Hull scored with 3:35 showing in the first. But Colgate's initial three-goal rush settled that score and sparked the defense to better play over the next two quarters plus.

After Navy tied the Raiders 4-4 with 11:51 left in the second quarter, Colgate's defense held the Midshipmen to just one goal over the next 39 minutes and 54 seconds.

"We did a good job of setting down after the three early goals," Murphy said. "In the first quarter, we weren't playing stingy defense. After that, we buckled down and started to play really good team defense where guys were taking their matchups personally and winning their matchups.

"If we had to slide, we were sliding and we were covering properly and not giving anything up on the inside."

During that defensive clamp-down, Colgate took over the game until the final two minutes. McCann, Adams and Foote teamed for the middle three goals that made it 7-4 by early in the fourth. And then McCann and Foote completed their hat tricks, backed up this time by Williams, to push the game out of reach.

Boyle Grabs Six Ground Balls
Colgate finished with 31 shots to Navy's 26, with ground balls favoring the Maroons 30-27. Faceoffs finished 11-10 Raiders, and Colgate was nearly perfect clearing the ball at 22-of-23. Navy finished 12-of-13 in that department. The Raiders committed 14 turnovers to Navy's 11.

Colgate also scored 10 goals for the third straight game.

Kevin Boyle had another strong showing as he matched his season high with six grounds balls and added one caused turnover. The senior captain leads the regulars with 31 ground balls for the season. McCann, Alex Kinnealey andChandler Millstone chipped in three grounds balls apiece for the Raiders.

Brandon Burke posted seven saves for his seventh victory in goal. The first-year netminder faced 14 Navy shots on target.

"We gave up a couple of cheap ones at the end from the faceoff-X – lost some discipline there in the waning moments of the fourth quarter," Murphy said. "But overall, I'm really proud of my team's effort."

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