Freshman midfielder Tucker Dordevic broke an 11-11 tie with 12 seconds left as Syracuse edged Virginia 12-11 on Sunday afternoon for its first road win in the ACC opener.
Syracuse appeared to have control of the game in the final 10 minutes after Jamie Trimboli’s unassisted goal gave the Orange a 10-5 lead with 12:54 to go.
But Mike D’Amario led the Hoos on a furious comeback, as he scored three consecutive goals as part of a 6-1 run. The last of those goals came from Jared Conners, and equalized the game with 1:41 to go, setting up Dordevic’s heroics.
Dordevic led Syracuse with four goals, and used a nifty spin move to create enough room for the game-winning shot.
The win assuaged some fears that Syracuse might stumble in the 2018 season. After dominating Binghamton in its opener, the Orange was pummeled by Albany before escaping Army last week.
The Cavaliers, ranked No. 5 and in possession of a potent offense, proved to be a formidable test, starting at the X. Midfielder Justin Schwenk had won .620 of his faceoffs, and was matched up against a struggling Dan Varello.
Instead, Varello found his rhythm early, and won 16 of 26 at the X on the afternoon.
Syracuse was also the beneficiary of some sloppy Virginia play. The Cavs went scoreless in the third quarter, in part due to five turnovers. For the game, Virginia committed 19 turnovers to the Orange’s eight.
Aside from Dordevic’s heroics, Stephen Rehfuss added a goal and two assists, while Jamie Trimboli, Brett Kennedy and Bradley Voigt chipped in two goals apiece.
The Orange also received outstanding goaltending from ACC player of the week Dom Madonna, who notched 11 saves.
Dox Aitken scored two goals and added three assists for the Hoos.
Syracuse returns to the Carrier Dome to host Johns Hopkins on Saturday, March 10 at 1 p.m.