Men’s Lacrosse Picks up First Conference Win


Brian Lupps/Villanovan Photography

Matt Campbell became the all-time leading point scorer with 217 career points.

Brooke Ackerman, Co-Sports Editor

This past weekend, No. 6 Villanova men’s lacrosse team secured its first conference win of the season, defeating St. John’s, 18-8. 

In Saturday’s win over the Red Storm, fifth year midfielder Matt Campbell scored a hat trick, making him Villanova’s all-time leading point scorer with 217 career points, including a school-record 145 goals and 72 assists.

“[Campbell] is our leader,” head coach Mike Correa said. “Especially on the offensive end of the field — we all know he can score the ball, but the fact that he’s become a better feeder as well makes him a harder player to cover, and a more dangerous player.

However, Campbell wasn’t alone in his efforts. 

Twelve Wildcats registered at least one point in the game, led by junior attackman Matt Licata, who scored a career-high four goals for the Wildcats, while fifth-year attackman Patrick Daly chipped in with three goals of his own, making this the ninth time in 10 games that Daly has scored at least a hat trick for the ‘Cats. 

“Patrick brings a kind of confidence [to the team],” Correa said. “He can catch and shoot, dodge and score, he’s also great at those garbage goals when the goalie makes a save and it’s a battle for a ground ball in front of the crease — he’s just got a bunch of different ways he can get the ball in the goal, which makes him really hard to defend.” 

Despite Villanova having a slow start to the game, shooting 3-for-15, the ‘Cats began to create some separation as they pulled away from a 10-6 lead over St. John’s after scoring six unanswered goals in the span of under seven minutes. 

Villanova showed its offensive domination late in the third quarter after a series of goals from junior midfielder Tucker Goodelle, sophomore attackmen Dan Martin and Daly, in just 46 seconds, put the Wildcats up by eight goals heading into the final quarter of play. 

On the defensive end, the ‘Cats forced 23 turnovers, with seven different players being credited with a forced miscue. 

“To get some of those turnovers and then transition them into quick and easy opportunities to score, it’s really important,” Correa said. 

Villanova’s defensive line combined for four points in the game, with sophomore defenseman Tripp Robinson leading the defensive line with a standout performance. 

Robinson had a career-high four caused turnovers which matched the most in a game by a Villanova player this season, as well as four ground balls, and the third and fourth assists of his career.  

With the win over the Red Storm, Villanova is now 8-2 on the season and 1-0 in the Big East. 

“It’s always nice to get off to a good start in conference [play],” Correa said. “We only have five conference games, so each game is really impactful … to try and win enough games to qualify for the Big East is goal number one for us each year, so to get one [win] in there is a great start.” 

With the ‘Cats three-game home stand coming to an end, Villanova will now travel to Colorado to take on No. 16 Denver. The Pioneers (4-4, 0-1 Big East), fell to Georgetown, 13-6, in its conference home opener. 

“The strength of [Denver] is defense,” Correa said. “They draw a lot of experience back there, so we have to really work hard on the offensive end of the field to generate scoring opportunities.”

The Wildcats are set to take on Denver on Saturday, April 8th at 2 p.m. for its second straight Big East game.