Nicky Galasso scored twice in the final nine minutes of the game, Kevin Rice added two goals and three assists, and No. 1 Syracuse edged No. 12 Colgate 9-7 on Saturday afternoon.
The Orange fell behind early, as it struggled to figure out how to attack a stifling Colgate zone defense. SU also was repeatedly stymied by Raiders goalie Brandon Burke, who recorded eight first half saves (14 overall).
But after seeing his team fall behind 5-3 early in the second quarter, Syracuse head coach John Desko used a timeout to refocus his offense. Dylan Donahue responded by scoring an extra-man goal, which proved to be the impetus for a 3-0 run that gave the Orange its first lead of the game, 6-5, with 4:49 left in the first half.
The teams went into halftime tied, and each scored a goal in the third quarter. SU appeared to have seized momentum after being awarded a two-minute, non-releasable penalty, but the Raiders successfully killed it.
Galasso took over in the final quarter, scoring the go-ahead goal with 8:47 left, and added an insurance goal with 3:56 left for the final score.
Syracuse outshot the Raiders 43-26, while Ben Williams dominated at the X, winning 18-of-20 faceoffs.
The win should be enough to propel SU to the No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament, which will be unveiled on Sunday evening at 9 p.m. on ESPNU. The debate centers on Syracuse and Notre Dame, with the Orange defeated a ranked team on Saturday, and Notre Dame trouncing unranked Army.
Syracuse currently sits atop LaxPower’s RPI rankings.