The Robert Morris Colonials were no match for the Villanova men’s lacrosse team last Saturday when ‘Nova defeated them 16-11, earning its third conference win and ninth win for the season. After falling short to Drexel 12-10, the 19th-ranked ‘Cats were ecstatic to come out victorious in their last home game of the season. This is the second year in a row that the Wildcats were able to walk away with a win against the Colonials. Last season when the two teams met, ‘Nova was able to defeat Robert Morris in double overtime, winning 11-10. This was the third time that Villanova was able to beat Robert Morris when the two teams competed against one another.
Senior Tim Langan had an impressive game for Villanova leading the team in scoring with 3 goals and one assist for the afternoon.
The Wildcats did not wait long to get on the board. They came out strong offensively ending the first quarter up 3-2. It took only 30 seconds for the ‘Cats to find the back of the net when sophomore Mike Brennan started the game with a goal at the 14:30 mark.
Less than a minute later, the Colonials responded with a quick goal. Freshman C.J. Small then put the Wildcats back on top with a go ahead goal. The game was tied once again after a goal by Robert Morris, but freshman Matthew Fritts was able to score a goal before the quarter ended to make the score 3-2.
During the second quarter the Wildcats were on fire as they netted four consecutive goals. Junior Mark Scioscia, freshman Kevin Cunningham and Langan each earned a goal. Even senior goal keeper Andrew DiLoreto had some extraordinary offensive action with a cross field shot for his first career goal.
By halftime the Wildcats were able to bring their lead to seven, ending the first half of play with a score of 10-3. This lead was augmented by Matt Bell and Langan, who had the final goals of the half.
To start the third quarter, Robert Morris attempted a comeback by scoring three straight goals to cut ‘Nova’s lead to four. Chris Aitkin turned the tide by scoring for ‘Nova with nine and half minutes remaining. Scioscia was the next scorer for the Wildcats, scoring the last ‘Nova goal for the quarter. The Colonials were able to post two more scores before the end of the quarter, slicing the lead to 12-8 at the end of the third period.
The fourth quarter was dominated by the Wildcats as well. Brennan scored the first goal of the quarter after a minute and a half. Though the Colonials responded with a goal, Cunningham netted another one for the Wildcats just seconds later. Fritz and Bell added one more goal apiece. Robert Morris was able to score twice more before the conclusion of the match to make the final score 16-11.
DiLoreto earned 11 saves for the game and notched his ninth win of the season. He now leads the country in goals-against average with an average of .591. He has 109 saves for the year and an impressive save percentage of .576. Colonial goalkeeper Sal Barcia had 18 saves on the day, but allowed 16 goals to get by him because of Villanova’s powerful offense.
It was a big game for Villanova senior Chris MacDonald, who had two assists, giving him 101 points for his career. MacDonald, along with Fritz, has had at least one point in every game this season. Fritts has 17 goals this season along with three assists. MacDonald leads ‘Nova with assists and is second in the CAA with 16 assists. He also has eight goals this season.
The Colonials were led by Crobyn Tao-Brambleby, who notched three goals and an assist on the afternoon for a total of four points, while goalkeeper Sal Barcia managed 18 saves and allowed all 16 goals.
Looking at the defensive side, ‘Nova is first in the nation in scoring defense, allowing 6.25 goals per game.
The season is coming down to the wire with the last regular season game set to be played next week. With a winning 9-4 record, including three wins and two losses in the CAA, the Wildcats have had a pretty solid season.
Villanova plays its final regular season game this Saturday. The match is set for 7 p.m. against No.5-ranked Hofstra in Long Island, N.Y.