Three quick thoughts on SU's 13-11 win over St. John's in Big East opener

Three thoughts on Syracuse's 13-11 win over St. John's in the Whitman's Sampler Independence Classic at PPL Park in Chester, Pa., including JoJo Marasco's five-point effort.

The Syracuse men’s lacrosse team won its first Big East game of the year in a 13-11 victory over St. John’s in the Whitman’s Sampler Independence Classic at PPL Park in Chester, Pa. The Orange (3-1, 1-0 Big East) were led by standout attacking midfielder JoJo Marasco, who had a goal and four assists. Derek Maltz scored a hat trick for Syracuse, and Luke Cometti added two goals. 

Here are three quick thoughts on the game:

Syracuse’s defense wasn’t great, but it will be all right.
Matt Harris got his first start of the year in defense, sliding over from defensive midfield to replace the injured Brandon Mullins. That moved Peter Macartney up to the longstick middie slot, and it seemed to heighten the rest of the Orange defense.
Goalkeeper Bobby Wardwell, in particular, had one of his better starts in goal, including making a brilliant save by charging out of the crease in front of a gaggle of red jerseys early in the first quarter to preserve a 1-0 lead. A win for the defense without Mullins, and with team captain Brian Megill having an up-and-down afternoon, should boost morale after a tough week.
Add in a breakout game by Maltz, who led the team in scoring a year ago, and Syracuse can find ways to win without its second-best defensive player.

This is JoJo Marasco’s team.
The senior attacking midfielder was looking to get his teammates involved early and often, and it left him open for some incredible shots, including a left-handed drop shot that found the net with about 12 minutes to go in the second quarter. The star of the team is still that Orange defense, led by fellow Major League Lacrosse draftee Megill. But Marasco, who was selected by the New York Lizards in January, may control the team’s fate, both as a scorer, facilitator and ability to connect the defense to the attack.

Brian Megill can do anything.
The senior defender and team captain made a couple of uncharacteristic mistakes to allow St. John’s to get back into the game in the middle two quarters. But Megill, who appeared visibly frustrated, scooped up a ground ball with under two minutes to play in the third quarter and ran the length of the field to put the Orange up, 10-9 going into the final period. The longstick can score, too. He showed why the Denver Outlaws took him with the seventh overall pick in January’s MLL draft.

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