Griffin Westlin and Pat Kavanagh each scored four goals, and No. 9 Notre Dame overcame an early 6-2 deficit in routing No. 4 Syracuse lacrosse on Saturday afternoon, 18-11.
The Fighting Irish dominated Syracuse at the X, winning 23 of 32 faceoffs, and outshot the Orange by 13 to tie SU’s most lopsided loss of the season. It was Syracuse’s second straight loss.
“I think we kind of fooled ourselves a little bit having the early lead and we started to relax,” Syracuse head coach John Desko said. “Obviously how [Notre Dame] was with their faceoffs having all those possessions […] I think we came a part a little bit defensively, we didn’t seem like we were communicating.”
The Orange took an early foul goal lead with with six early goals through the first two quarters, all but one of them being unassisted. But Notre Dame then went on scoring runs of five and seven unanswered goals.
The last run gave the Irish a commanding 14-8 lead with 10:18 in the third quarter after a Charles Leonard unassisted goal.
“The wheels came off in the second quarter for sure,” Desko said. “We were 9 for 32 on the faceoffs, that’s an awful lot of possessions.”
It was the second straight week SU struggles at the X. Last week against Duke, Syracuse lost 24 of 32 faceoffs.
“It’s one of those things, if you don’t have the ball, you’re not going to score,” Desko said. “We gave them too many opportunities and they really came alive in the second quarter.”
The Orange did make things interesting in the third quarter, scoring three straight goals to cut the lead to 14-11 after Stephen Rehfuss third goal of the afternoon. But the Orange was shut out in the fourth quarter, as Notre Dame won all five faceoffs.
“We had 24 possessions on offense, that’s not a lot,” Desko said. “Just not enough today.”