March 10, 2012

No. 12 Denison Downs Haverford

from press release

- The 12th ranked Denison men's lacrosse team improved to 4-0 following an 11-7 victory over Haverford College from St. Stephen's School.

The Fords opened the game by taking a 2-0 lead thanks to goals by Geoff Geppert and a man-up goal score by Phillip Valiant with four minutes to play in the first quarter. The Big Red would win the face-off after Valliant's goal and they would patiently wait till the 1:59 mark to strike. That's when Alex Hardt notched his first goal of the afternoon.

Four minutes into the second quarter, Hardt would strike again, this time off a feed from Cory Couture that tied the contest at 2-2. Two minutes later Denison would take its first lead when Nick Verklin notched an unassisted goal.

After Verklin was flagged for a one minute penalty following the goal, Haverford took the ball and scored its second extra-man goal of the game, which tied things at 3-3.

From that point until midway through the third quarter Denison would go on a 4-0 run to take a commanding 7-3 lead. With 7:32 to play in the third, Haverford's Zack Cohen broke the Fords' drought by scoring his fifth goal of the season. That would spark a 3-0 run by Haverford that trimmed Denison's lead to 7-6 with 2:47 to play in the quarter.

Needing a strong response to quell Haverford's newfound momentum, DU turned to Eddie Vita who scored off an assist from Hardt just 37 seconds after Haverford's last score. With under a minute to play in the quarter, Hardt would score for the fourth time, lifting his squad to another three-goal advantage.

In the fourth quarter DU would push its lead out to five, eventually winning by a final score of 11-7. Denison was led by Hardt's four goals and one assist and Eddie Vita's three goals and one assist. Denison's dominance at the face-off X continued on Saturday as Chip Phillips won 13 of 18 draws while scooping up three ground balls. The Big Red also dominated the hustle statistics, securing 48 ground balls to just 20 ground balls for the Fords. Leading Denison in ground balls with six was Austin Campbell and Mark Stanton. Hardt added five ground balls while Nick Farrell also chipped in five.

Goalie Nick Petracca posted eight saves while facing 15 shots on cage. Haverford goalie Joe Banno finished with eight saves while staring down 19 shots on cage.

Haverford's scoring leader was Cohen who ended with three goals and two assists. Valliant took 10 shots but only scored once but he led his team with four ground balls.

The win avenged a 10-7 loss to Haverford last season and improved Denison's record against the Fords to 5-2, all-time. Denison will continue its spring break trip on Wednesday with a game against St. Mary's (Md.) at the Collegiate School in Richmond, Va. Face-off is scheduled for 1 p.m. and live stats will be provided by St. Mary's.

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