Feb. 25, 2017
PHILADELPHIA – Virginia’s Dox Aitken scored four goals, but it wasn’t enough as the No. 17 Penn Quakers (2-0) outlasted the No. 6 Cavaliers (3-1) on Saturday afternoon, 11-10, inside historic Franklin Field.
“We wanted to play faster,” said Virginia men’s lacrosse head coach Lars Tiffany. “Penn to their credit, and to that of their coaching staff, often just raced back into a zone defense to try and slow down our transition and our early offense. They tried to create a six-on-six box and for the most part it worked for them. On the flip side, they scored some transition goals in the third quarter.
“I thought Penn struck a good balance of knowing when to run and when to play in the six-on-six and try to attack us in the settled situation. We obviously did not do a good job of breaking down their zone defense today. Give credit to their goalie, Reed Junkin, for making some saves. I am proud of our men. We were always trailing in this game. Our men kept clawing back in there. We saw some pretty good team defense from our men in the second half and Will Railey made some key saves down the stretch when we needed them.”
Penn took an early 3-0 on the heels of two transition goals off faceoffs. Alex Roesner capped the early 3-0 Penn run with an unassisted goal 4:40 into the game. Dox Aitken scored his first goal of the game at 7:14 in the first quarter to put UVA on the board, 3-1. Penn faceoff specialist Chris Santangelo won the ensuing faceoff and scored it unassisted nine seconds later to increase the Penn lead back to three, 4-1.
Penn went on a 3-1 run to take a 7-5 lead with 3:35 left in the first half, but goals by Williams and Aitken tied the game for UVA, 7-7, heading into the intermission.
The Quakers scored a couple of transition goals in the third and started the fourth quarter with a score to finish off a 3-1 run, taking a 10-8 lead with 11:30 left to play. UVA won the ensuring faceoff and Aitken scored his fourth goal of the game, cutting the Cavalier deficit back to one goal, 10-9. After a failed Penn clear, Joe French found Williams in transition at 8:48 to tie the game, 10-10.
Penn retook the lead for good, 11-10, with 5:52 left when Kevin McGeary found Tyler Dunn for the goal. UVA had three opportunities with under a minute to tie the game, but Junkin made a couple big saves for the Quakers to hold onto the win.
Virginia won the battle of shots (48-36), ground balls (28-21), faceoffs (14-10) and had more turnovers (16-13). Penn had more saves (16-10).
The Cavaliers return to action on Wednesday when High Point comes to Charlottesville. The game is set to faceoff at 7 p.m. and the game will be broadcast on ACC Network Extra.