Lacrosse looking for revenge against Army

Army ended Syracuse's hopes of a third straight National Championship last season, now the No. 2 Orange are looking for revenge when they host the No. 18 Black Knights Sunday.

The sting still has to be felt. Last season, with the SU men’s lacrosse team looking for a third straight NCAA national championship, Army would have none of it. The Black Knights upset SU in front of the Carrier Dome crowd in the first round of the tournament, 9-8, in double-overtime. Now, the Orange are looking for revenge.

“We’re not looking ahead of Army. We made the mistake of possibly doing that (last year). They came in, surprised us, and played a great game." –SU senior Joel White

“Anytime you lose your last game, you wanna get back out onto the field,” head coach John Desko said. “When we lost to Army last year, we weren’t focusing on what we were going to do this summer, it was what’s it gonna take to get better and make sure this doesn’t happen again.”

The SU players have taken the head man’s cue.

“It’s another game,” sophomore Brian Megill said. “Just got to come into it like it’s another game. They are a great team. It’s gonna be a good game.”

Coming off a 13-7 season opening win over Denver, the No. 2 Orange (1-0) are being careful not to overhype this game. Syracuse will look to avoid one major mistake that may have cost them last year against the Blacknights (1-1), who are ranked No. 18 in the country.

“We’re not looking ahead of Army,” senior Joel White said. “We made the mistake of possibly doing that (last year). They came in, surprised us, and played a great game last year.”

Against Denver, Syracuse showed an impressive array of depth with eight players getting in on the scoring action. Five players (Jojo Marasco, Tim Desko, Josh Amidon, Jovan Miller, and Stephen Keogh) finished with two goals each.

This crew will have a true test as they look to duplicate that balanced performance. Army comes in with a stingy defense allowing only seven goals per game in their two games. They are led by seniors Bill Henderson and goalie Tom Palesky. Henderson was the Patriot League Preseason Defensive Player of the Year. Paleskly has recorded 25 saves, and at 6-feet, 3-inches tall and 199-pounds, Desko marvels at the obstacle the goalie poses.

“Their goaltender, I mean look at how many saves he has already this year,” Desko said. “He doesn’t give you a lot of goal to shoot at. They try to force you down the sides, so you’re taking bad shots. We’ve got to be really smart and take good shots against them.”

With the rematch an obvious storyline, things should get more exciting with a Central New York flavor that will infiltrate the Dome.

With SU boasting a large CNY roster presence, Army has a contingent of its own. The Black Knight’s players from the area include Zach Palmiere (Christian Brothers Academy), Bill Henderson (Tully), Tim Henderson (Tully), Tyler Kamide (Liverpool) and Devin Lynch (Skaneateles).

“It’s one of the few games you come in and the crowd is both ways I think,” White said. “We look forward to having a good crowd here.”


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