CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va - A fourth quarter goal from Chris Bocklet via Steele Stanwick proved to be the difference as the No. 8 Virginia Cavaliers (12-3) outlasted the No. 12 Princeton Tigers (11-5) on Sunday afternoon during the NCAA First Round, 6-5, inside Klöckner Stadium. The six goals by UVa is the lowest number of scores for the Cavaliers in an NCAA win and the 11 total goals between the two teams tied for the fifth-fewest ever in an NCAA Tournament game, four other games are tied for first with 10 total goals. Six other NCAA Tournament games have featured 11 total goals, most recently the Syracuse vs. Maryland quarterfinal last season.
UVa advances to the NCAA quarterfinal round next Sunday in Philadelphia, playing the No. 4 seed Notre Dame Fighting Irish. UVa's NCAA quarterfinal contest will be played at PPL Park and faceoff is at noon. The game will be televised live on ESPNU in HD.
"It was a good win for us," said UVa men's lacrosse head coach Dom Starsia. "It was a hard fought game and I give a lot of credit to Princeton for playing well. I thought defensively we were on it the entire day as we jumped in and out of different defenses throughout the day. I thought we were very alert on the defensive side of the ball, I thought offensively we created some good opportunities, but what has been indicative for us for weeks and months is the ball hasn't been jumping in for us. Today I give [Tyler] Fiorito some credit for that, who is probably as good as a goalie as there is out there."
UVa jumped out to a 3-1 lead in the first quarter, scoring the game's first two goals. Colin Briggs scored unassisted at 10:54 to start things off. Bocklet scored his first goal of the afternoon on a crisp Matt White helper shortly after, at 9:09.
Tom Schreiber put Princeton on the board after Tucker Shanely found the midfielder with 3:55 left in the first period. UVa was able to cap the first quarter in transition when Matt Lovejoy picked up a ground ball and led a Cavalier clear. The UVa senior defensemen found Bobby Hill in transition for the goal with 10 seconds remaining in the first quarter. The assist was the first career point for Lovejoy.
The second quarter was a defensive juggernaut until Briggs scored the period's first goal with 3:27 left before the intermission, pushing UVa's lead to three goals, 4-1. After being held scoreless for 17:29, Princeton found nylon for its second goal of the game when Forest Sonnenfeldt dropped a 17-yard shot from Schreiber. The goal cut UVa's lead to two goals, 4-2.
UVa wasn't done yet with its first half scoring, which started when Chris Clements caused Schreiber to turn the ball over in the final seconds. Harry Prevas picked up the ground ball and found Chris LaPierre, who chucked the rock 45 yards from the restraining line to Stanwick who was standing at goal line extended. Stanwick grabbed the ball behind Princeton's Rob Castelo, who missed the jump ball. Stanwick beat Fiorito with five seconds left before the intermission.
Princeton stormed out in the third quarter, scoring two goals to cut its deficit to one goal, 5-4. Jeff Froccaro scored back-to-back goals, his second coming with six seconds left in the third quarter after a UVa turnover. The Cavaliers failed to score in the third quarter.
With 7:07 left in the game came the Stanwick to Bocklet connection, giving UVa the 6-4 lead. But Princeton wouldn't go quietly. Schreiber scored his second goal of the day with 1:19 left to play, cutting UVa's lead back to one goal, 6-5.
Without any timeouts remaining, Princeton won the ensuing faceoff and set the offense for one final assault on the goal. With nine seconds left, Sonnenfeldt from 15 yards out rifled a shot that hit LaPierre straight in the chest. The ball caromed toward the Princeton sideline where the Cavaliers had the backup. With six seconds left, the Cavaliers tossed the ball down the field to secure the triumph.
Princeton won the shot battle (34-25), ground ball battle (30-27), saves (12-8) and faceoffs (9-5).
Lovejoy and Clements each caused four turnovers, as Princeton had 18 turnovers on the afternoon.
Scoring (G-A) - P: Tom Schreiber 2-2, Jeff Froccaro 2-0, Tucker Shanley 0-2, Forest Sonnenfeldt 1-0. V: Chris Bocklet 2-0, Colin Briggs 2-0, Steele Stanwick 1-1, Bobby Hill 1-0, Chris LaPierre 0-1, Matt Lovejoy 0-1, Matt White 0-1.
Goalie Summary - P: Tyler Fiorito 60:00 mins. 12 saves, 6 goals allowed. V: Rob Fortunato 60:00 mins. 8 saves, 5 goals allowed.
Shots: P-34, V-25
Ground Balls: P-30, V-27
Clearing: P-22x24, V-19x20
Faceoffs: P-9, V -5
Penalties: P-1-1:00, V-0-0:00
EMO: P-0x0, V-0x1
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A 1985 graduate of UVA, White worked at the Richmond Times-Dispatch until July 2009. He was honored six times as the state's Sportswriter of the Year.
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