Syracuse Falls to Cornell 13-8 to End 3-Game Win Streak
By Jonah Karp
Men’s Lacrosse Beat Reporter
ITHACA, N.Y. —Three Big Red players tallied multiple goals as No. 7 Syracuse (6-4, 3-0) fell to No. 9 Cornell (8-3, 3-1) 13-7 on the road.
“Sometimes our offense is clicking, and our defense isn’t,” star defender Nick Mellen said. “Sometimes our defense is clicking, and our offense isn’t. And it just doesn’t work out. We both have got to be clicking.”
Cornell got off to a fast start on offense and a familiar face started the scoring engine. Jeff Teat, the nation’s leader in points per game, got the ball rolling with a goal right in front of the crease. Jonathan Donville followed with his 12th goal of the year to give the Big Red a 2-0 advantage less than five minutes into the contest.
But Syracuse had a quick response. Tucker Dordevic and Brendan Bomberry each found the back of the net just 44 seconds apart respectively. The game was knotted up at two midway through the first quarter.
Just when it seemed like a chess match was brewing, Cornell stifled any Syracuse momentum. A 3-0 scoring run orchestrated by Jake McCulloch, Donville and Jon Piatelli ended the first quarter 5-2 in favor of the Big Red.
Brendan Curry put the brakes on Cornell’s express train with a score, but that was short-lived. Clarke Petterson and McCulloch each tacked on more insurance for the Big Red, sending their team into halftime with a comfortable 7-3 lead.
“I thought we were a little hurried in the first half,” Syracuse head coach John Desko said. “And then you throw in the saves that their goalie had in the first half probably frustrated us a bit.”
Cornell didn’t lose a step coming out of the break. Connor Fletcher sent one into the cage just 36 seconds into the third quarter to put the Big Red up 8-3.
After Nate Solomon bounced a shot through the back of the net, Jordan Dowiak and Petterson tacked on two more for Cornell to give their team a 10-4 advantage entering the fourth.
The Orange attempted a mildly valiant comeback in the final period. David Lipka scored twice while Stephen Rehfuss and Jamie Trimboli each netted one in the fourth, but the hole proved too deep and the time too little.
Goalkeeper Caelahn Bullen had just 20 saves in total for the 2018 season. But the sophomore posted 14 saves in this game alone. Dom Madonna notched 9 saves for Syracuse in the loss.
“We’ve had such a tough schedule this year with all our opponents being fairly highly ranked, especially when we play them,” Desko said. “And it’s only going to help us get better. But we’ve got to win some of these games too, so we’ve got to get back at it tomorrow.”
Syracuse returns home next Saturday to face North Carolina at 4pm. If the Orange wins, it will finish the regular season undefeated in conference play for the second straight year.