In what is a rarity for any lacrosse game, neither the John Carroll University nor Wilmington College lacrosse teams scored a goal in the entire first quarter in their game on Saturday, April 26.
After making some minor adjustments in between quarters, the floodgates opened for the Blue Streaks, as they unloaded for eight second quarter goals and ended the regular season with an 18-6 victory.
Mustering only eight shots in the first quarter, the Blue and Gold came out firing in the second quarter. Freshman Declan O’Grady, who was named the OAC offensive player of the week, scored less than two minutes into the period to give JCU the goal it needed to get the ball rolling.
Seeing the ball finally rip the net boosted the team’s confidence, and the goals started pouring in.
In the next four minutes, JCU scored three more goals off the sticks of freshmen Michael Roth (2) and Dominic Starvaggi.
The Blue and Gold poured on four more goals before the second quarter was completed, heading into halftime with an 8-2 lead.
Wilmington’s Jalen Jackson opened the half with a goal just 32 seconds in. That was the last goal of the quarter for the Quakers.
The Blue Streaks battened down the hatches on defense. Meanwhile, JCU lit a spark offensively, going on a 7-0 run to close the quarter, stretching the lead all the way to 15-3 as the third quarter came to a close.
O’Grady scored three more goals in that third quarter, and added one more in the fourth, bringing his total to a team-leading six goals on the day.
JCU stretched the lead to 17-3 at one point in the fourth, eventually winning the contest 18-6.
“This weekend’s game went very well, finishing off the season with an 18-6 win over Wilmington College was important,” said freshman Stephen Leous. “Going into the OAC Tournament with confidence and determination is going to be big for us.”
In the inaugural season for JCU varsity lacrosse, the team proved they are going to be a team that competes day in and day out for years to come. The Blue Streaks finished with a 12-3 overall record and will be playing in the first ever Ohio Athletic Conference Tournament.
“Last weekend’s game was good for us because it put us in the spot that we wanted to be going into the tournament,” said Roth. “Our offense connected very well together on Saturday. We were able to play well off the ball and find a lot of open cutters which resulted in easy goals.”
Editor’s Note: The Blue Streaks faced off with the University of Mount Union Raiders on Wednesday, April 31 in the first round of the OAC Tournament. Head to jcusports.com for a box score and full game recap.