'Cuse narrowly escapes Cornell 13-12

Syracuse takes down another nationally ranked team, adding a victory over in-state rival, the Cornell Big Red. More inside.

It's every goalie's best friend – the pipe.

With 22 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter, what would have been the game- tying goal from Cornell's Connor English wasn't and No. 8 Syracuse (8-2) went on to shock No. 2 Cornell (10-2) 13-12 Wednesday night at the Carrier Dome.

"I heard it hit something," junior Orange goalie Dominic Lamolinara said. "I figured it hit the pipe, but I did not know where it went. That was my fear."

Lamolinara's angst subsided when his teammate, redshirt-senior Steve Lanzito, scooped up the ball and launched it into Syracuse territory where redshirt-freshman Dylan Donahue safely secured the catch and held onto it until the clock expired.

"It was exactly what were looking for," Cornell head coach Ben DeLuca said about the play drawn up for English. "We thought we were having some success against their short sticks tonight. Connor got right to the goal, a very high percentage look, and just bounced it off the crossbar. I think that's an opportunity Connor finishes nine times out of 10."

Led by redshirt-senior Rob Pannell, Cornell found success early, exploding for the first four goals of the game before Syracuse's Jojo Marasco found junior Scott Loy six-plus minutes later to put the Orange on the board 4-1.

After building a quick lead, Orange head coach John Desko made the change on defense to go to a zone after originally starting off man-to-man.

The adjustment seemed to work.

"I think we settled down," Desko said. "I think the change going from man; we came out with a quick zone. Any zone, you have to kind of stop, slow down, and figure it out. Let your offense work against it. Take good opportunities. Going back to man, it probably helped us."

The advantage allowed the Orange to start plotting its attack on the offensive end, rattling off three of the last four goals to end the first quarter and cut the deficit to one.

Back-to-back goals to start the second quarter by junior Billy Ward and Luke Cometti would be countered by Cornell's Connor Buczek‘s three goal tear to put the Big Red up 9-6 with 11:18 remaining in the third quarter.

The senior duo of Marasco and Cometti -- who led Syracuse with four goals -- would not be deterred; scoring twice in a 4-1 Orange run that tied the game up again at 10 less than three minutes into the fourth.

It was a collective effort on both the offensive and defensive ends for the Orange and ultimately, proved too much for Cornell. Behind the play of Marasco, Loy and Cometti, the Orange offense slowed its play down, forcing the Big Red's defense into mistakes and unforced errors.

"We struggled at times to control their midfielders," DeLuca said. "I thought they did a great job. We knew we were going to have our hands full on that end."

With the win, the Orange have now notched its fourth victory over a top-25 team this year and includes the likes of No. 2 Cornell, No. 9 Princeton, No. 14 St. John's, and No. 15 Johns Hopkins.

Adds Desko, "I'm really proud of these guys. We've been in a lot of games like this this year. We don't really look at the scoreboard a lot. We just keep playing, and we were able to come from behind and win the game at the end. "[It's a] very big win for us."

Syracuse will play its second of four games in 11 days this Saturday, March 13, against Rutgers at the Carrier Dome. Game time is set for 1pm ET.


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