Cavaliers Tangle with Second-Ranked Syracuse Saturday
March 1, 2002
Charlottesville, Va. –
#5 Virginia (1-0) vs. #2 Syracuse (1-0)
March 2, 2002
Ticket information: $5 for adults, $3 for youth and senior citizens. Ticket booths open at 11:00 a.m., one hour before the women’s lacrosse game between the Cavaliers and the Syracuse Orangewomen.
The Series vs. the Orangemen
The Cavaliers and Orangemen have staged some of the most thrilling battles in college athletics throughout the last decade, but the rivalry stretches back more than half a century. Syracuse won the first meeting 13-4 in 1938 and has won eight of the 14 meetings all-time.
The two schools battled only three times between 1938-93, but have met at least once each season since 1994.
The two titans have clashed early in the regular season every year since 1995 in what is among the most anticipated games of the season by lacrosse fans everywhere.
Syracuse has won six of the last seven meetings dating back to 1997, including a 13-12 overtime win two years ago in the most recent game in Charlottesville. Virginia’s only win in this stretch was its 12-10 win in the championship game of the 1999 NCAA Tournament.
Last season Syracuse posted a 13-7 win at the Carrier Dome in what was Virginia’s lowest scoring total in the series since the first meeting.
Both teams are known for their high-powered offense, but curiously neither team has scored more than 14 goals in the last four meetings.
A three-goal win can be considered a “blow out” in this series as seven of the last 11 games have been decided by two goals or less. In the recent history of the series (since 1994), Virginia’s biggest win was an eight-goal triumph (15-7 in 1995), while Syracuse’s biggest win was a seven-goal victory also in 1995 (20-13).
This is only the second time the teams have played at Kl?ckner Stadium (2000).
Cavaliers at Kl?ckner Stadium
This is Virginia’s first game at Kl?ckner Stadium this season. The Cavaliers defeated Drexel 20-5 last Sunday in a game played at the U-Hall Turf Field.
Playing on Kl?ckner’s natural grass surface has been good to the Cavaliers throughout the years. Since becoming their home field in 1993, Virginia is 37-8 (.822) at Kl?ckner. In 1995 Virginia was 6-0, while in 1993, 1997 and 1999 the Cavaliers were 4-0 there. Last season the Cavaliers were 3-2 at the grass facility.
Virginia has had pretty good luck springing the upset at Kl?ckner recently, posting a 7-2 record as the lower-ranked team.
The Cavaliers have beaten the #1 team twice at Kl?ckner (1996-Md., 2001-Md.) and the #2 team three times (1994-JHU, 1995-Md., 2000-Princeton).
Rookies Have Productive Debut
Virginia’s starting attack this season features two of the most highly regarded freshmen in the country-John Christmas and Joe Yevoli.
Fans across the nation turned their attention to these two to see how they would fare in making the step up to the college game. The duo looks to be ready to excel at the collegiate level if their play in the win over Drexel is any indication.
Yevoli shared team scoring honors with Billy Glading with four goals in the win over the Dragons. He also added an assist to account for five total points. Yevoli’s four goals are the most by a Virginia rookie since Conor Gill scored five in the national semifinals vs. Johns Hopkins in 1999. Additionally, his four goals are the most by a UVa rookie in his debut since Jay Jalbert scored four vs. Syracuse in 1997.
Christmas, who scored on the first shot of his career less than a minute into the contest, finished with three goals.
The two heralded attackmen weren’t the only Cavaliers to get into the scoring column vs. Drexel. Red-shirt freshman middie Joe Thompson chipped in with two goals in the fourth quarter, while face-off middie Jack deVilliers assisted on Thompson’s second goal.
The nine goals by the rookies last week are the most by Cavalier freshmen since 1996 when David Bruce (4), Josh Bradstreet (3), Mark Murphy (3), Michael Leahy (1), Tucker Radebaugh (1), Towns Middleton (1) and Jamie Leachman (1) combined to score 14 goals in a 38-5 win over VMI. Leachman added a career-high seven assists and was followed by Bruce’s three and one by Radebaugh to close a big day for the Wahoo rookies.