CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — The No. 9 Virginia men’s lacrosse team (2-0) overcame a snowstorm and a three-goal deficit to defeat No. 18 Drexel (0-1) at Klöckner Stadium 14-10 on Saturday night.
“It was a little hard to tell exactly what we were able to do tactically out there tonight,” said Virginia coach Dom Starsia. “I thought in the second half when conditions deteriorated like that it becomes more of an exercise of effort and desire, although I thought the second half was pretty clean overall.
Drexel scored the game’s first three goals to take an early 3-0 lead. UVa fought back with a 6-1 run to take a 7-5 lead with 3:45 left in the second period. Ryan Tucker scored two goals during the run and Zed Williams capped the scoring with an unassisted goal.
Jules Raucci tallied a goal at 2:05 in the second quarter to bring Drexel within one goal at 7-6 but that was as close as the Dragons got to the Cavaliers. James Pannell scored on a Ryan Lukacovic helper with 26 seconds left that started a 5-1 Cavalier run that carried into the third quarter.
The snow came bellowing in during halftime, forcing a 15-minute delay to clear the lines and stock the field with yellow lacrosse balls.
The UVa run continued with the Cavaliers scoring the first four goals of the third quarter. Pannell score the first, followed by Owen Van Arsdale and then Jeff Kratky capped the run after winning the ensuing faceoff and streaking in for the goal, giving Virginia an 11-6 advantage at the 8:29 mark in the third quarter.
Drexel and Virginia traded two goals apiece during the next several minutes with the score standing at 14-8 with 12:33 left. The Dragons managed back-to-back goals to cut the UVa advantage to four goals 14-10 courtesy of Jake Gennosa and Ryan Belka. The two goals by Drexel capped the game’s scoring as UVa’s defense thwarted any Drexel comeback attempt.
Lukacovic, Pannell and Tucker all led UVa with four points, while Matt Barrett made 12 saves in the cage, four of which came in a late fourth-quarter barrage by the Dragons. Van Arsdale led all players with three goals.
Drexel won the shots battle (42-39), the ground ball matchup (39-36) and the faceoff category (17-11).