Men’s Lacrosse Scores Largest NEC Win in Program History, Defeating Saint Joseph’s, 19-4, on Senior Day

Men’s Lacrosse Scores Largest NEC Win in Program History, Defeating Saint Joseph’s, 19-4, on Senior Day

SENIOR DAY PHOTOS

FAIRFIELD, Conn. – On a perfect Spring afternoon, the Sacred Heart men's lacrosse team's play matched the weather conditions as the Pioneers dominated Saint Joseph's, scoring a 19-4 victory for the largest NEC win in program history. The 15-goal victory moves the Pioneers to 7-5 on the season and, more importantly, 3-2 in NEC play while the Hawks drop down to 6-6 overall and 2-2 in the league.

On a day where the Pioneers held the Hawks scoreless for 32:18 straight minutes and outscored the Hawks 14-1 across the final 47:02 of play, the Pioneers' 15-goal margin-of-victory bests an 18-4 win over Wagner on April 2, 2011, as the largest NEC win since SHU joined the league in 2010. Meanwhile, SHU's 19 goals scored set a new season-high (previous highest was in a 18-11 win over Furman) while the total stands as the Pioneers' second-most goals scored in an NEC game in program history.

Brooks Dutton spearheaded a tremendous defensive effort, notching 13 saves while allowing a career-low four goals. The junior set a single-game career-high with a .765 save percentage while he moved into second place on the all-time wins list at SHU with his 22nd career victory. The dynamic senior defensive duo of Joseph Cipoletti (five ground balls, four caused turnovers) and Landon Kramer (three ground balls, three caused turnovers) combined for eight ground balls and seven of the Pioneers' 14 caused turnovers on the day.

Joe Saggese matched his career-high with five goals, a total he has posted on four other occasions, as the redshirt senior attack led the Pioneer offense on the day. Logan Liljeberg tied his career-high with a five-point afternoon, scoring one goal and dishing out a career-best four assists. Ten different Pioneers scored a goal while 13 different players notched at least one point, as a total team effort spearheaded the dominating victory.

SCORE
Sacred Heart 19 / Saint Joseph's 4

RECORDS
Sacred Heart (7-5, 3-2 NEC) / Saint Joseph's (6-6, 2-2 NEC)

LOCATION
Campus Field / Fairfield, Conn.

First Quarter (5-3 SHU)

  • SHU's offensive brigade started right from the opening sequence as Cipoletti forced a SJU turnover which was followed by a Max Tuttle unassisted strike just 30 seconds into play
  • Cipoletti again made an impact play as he forced a turnover on the SJU transition and dished to Saggese who found the back of the net just 59 seconds later to make it 2-0 Pioneers
  • Edwards spun around his defender and flew into the crease for SHU's third straight unanswered goal at the start of play
  • The two sides went back-and-forth, trading goals for the remaining 10+ minutes of play in the quarter as SHU led 5-3 after the first
  • Dutton set the tone for the day, notching five of his 13 saves on the day in the first quarter alone, including three coming in a span of less than three minutes
  • Despite winning eight of the nine faceoffs in the quarter, SJU was forced into nine turnovers while Dutton's five saves told the story of the first period in SHU building a two-goal advantage

Second Quarter (10-3 SHU)

  • SHU won the game, in large part, with their overwhelming showing in the second quarter, outscoring the Hawks 5-0
  • Saggese factored heavily in the SHU offensive attack, netting three of the five Pioneer goals in the frame
  • The first came off a Connor O'Reilly assist 2:40 into the quarter while Alex Weiss followed with an unassisted tally just 28 seconds later to make it 7-3 Pioneers with 11:52 left in the frame
  • SHU's defense spearheaded the 5-0 quarter, forcing seven more Hawk turnovers to bring SJU's total to 16 in the first half alone while the Pioneers committed just seven on the offensive end in the opening 30 minutes of play
  • After Jaden Walcot finished off a great feed from Donovan Lacey, Saggese pumped in two more goals before the halftime buzzer as the Pioneers led 10-3 at the half

Third Quarter (14-3 SHU)

  • SHU continued to dominate after the half, jumping on the Hawks right off the opening faceoff as Kramer scored his second of the season on Senior Day just eight seconds into the quarter
  • Putting the Hawks further in the hole, Kramer forced another SJU turnover and Jake Lindahl later converted a feed from Liljeberg to put the Pioneers up 12-3 just 1:01 into the frame
  • Having scored seven unanswered goals, SHU later extended their unanswered run to nine as Saggese netted his fifth of the day while Tuttle notched his third to make it 14-3 heading into the fourth
  • SHU completely dominated the quarter, outshooting the Hawks 22-5 (+17) while winning the turnover battle 5-3 and recording a 14-5 edge in ground balls

Fourth Quarter (19-4 SHU)

  • Emptying the bench in the fourth, SHU continued their domination and outscored the Hawks 5-1 to win the game 19-4
  • The Hawks finally broke their scoreless streak, netting their first and only goal of the second half 16 seconds into the quarter
  • SHU's defense tightened up following the Hawk goal, holding SJU scoreless for the final 14:44 of play while adding five more goals to build their total to 19
  • Five different goal scorers highlighted the frame for the Pioneers, with Tuttle, O'Reilly, Liljeberg, Reed Avveduti and Edwards all completing the scoring for SHU
  • Shots continued to skew heavily in favor of the Pioneers as the fourth quarter tally (14-6), combined with the third quarter dominating, had SHU outshooting the Hawks 36-11 in the second half alone

NOTES

  • SHU moved to 4-7 all-time against the Hawks, snapping a two-game losing streak as the Pioneers dropped two games to SJU last season including a 11-9 defeat in the 2018 NEC Semifinals
  • Prior to today, the Pioneers had lost five of the previous six meetings against the Hawks, as SHU owned a 1-5 mark against SJU since the Hawks joined the NEC in 2014
  • SHU set new season-highs in goals (19), assists (12), shots on-goal (36), fewest goals allowed (four) and save percentage (77.8)
  • A bevy of Pioneers received their first playing time of the season, including every player of SHU's 12-member senior class
  • Dutton is finding his form in the cage for SHU, allowing just 12 goals across the last two games combined while recording 24 saves as he's sporting a .667 save percentage in the Pioneers' current two-game winning streak
  • The four goals allowed is tied for the fewest goals the Pioneers have ever allowed in an NEC game
  • After the first quarter, the Pioneers outscored the Hawks 14-1, outshot SJU 50-16 and won the ground ball battle 33-17
  • Saggese pumped in five goals to up his team and NEC leading total to 36 on the season
  • Saggese has compiled 58 points (36 goals, 22 assists) through 12 games in 2019 as he ranks Top 10 in the nation in both points and points per game (4.83)
  • With at least two games remaining in the season, Saggese stands a great chance at eclipsing Tuttle's 64-point 2018 season for the highest single-season point total in SHU's Div. I program history (since 2000)
  • Saggese's point streak extends to 43 straight games which is tied for the fifth-longest active streak in the nation
  • Tuttle was dynamic with the ball in his stick all day, scoring four goals to break a scoring draught in which he scored just twice across the previous three games combined
  • Tuttle's point total increases to 44 (31 goals, 13 assists) on the season while his 31 goals are already Top 10 all-time in SHU's single-season history
  • Liljeberg's five points (one goal, four assists) ups the sophomore's season total to 32 which sets a new single-season career-high
  • O'Reilly and Walcot each finished with one goal and two assists for three points as both set a new career-high with their two-assist total on the day
  • Edwards scored three time, while adding one assist, as the sophomore tallied his first career hat trick and matched his career-high with four points
  • Cipoletti dished out an assist and added five ground balls and four caused turnovers as he leads the team in both categories (49 ground balls, 29 caused turnovers)
  • Senior goalkeeper Greg Price entered late in the fourth quarter, made one save and didn't allow a goal, in his first game action since the 2017 season

NEXT GAME
SHU hosts Binghamton on Tuesday as the Pioneers conclude their non-conference with their final home game of the season. Opening faceoff from Campus Field is set for 3 PM.