Syracuse Orange Men’s Lacrosse #9 vs. Virginia #2: Game Thread

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Saturday’s focus in 315 will be all about events inside the Carrier Dome, where good friends Jim Boeheim and Mike Krzyzewski will meet for the last time in their careers.

While the dome court will serve as the evening starter, the pitch at Klockner Stadium in Charlottesville, Va., will serve as a morning appetizer for the renewal of the high-octane rivalry between the men’s lacrosse team of Syracuse Orange and the Virginia Cavaliers. The game is intended for a Face-to-face at 12 p.m. on ACC Network.

Orange (1-1) are ranked No.9 and are coming off their first loss of the season in a hard-fought 14-10 loss to the ranked No.1 Maryland Terrapins. The Cavaliers (3-0) have two blowout wins over Air Force and Towson sandwiched around a one-goal win over High Point.

The series between the Orange and the Cavs is historically the tightest in all of sport. Heading into last year, teams were even in the all-time series and all-time goal tally in the series.

But last year it got a little weird, as a ‘Cuse team that was otherwise one of the best teams they’ve played with, beat UVA twice before the Cavs won the national championship.

Phaup dominance

One of the main reasons SU were able to win both games last year was the one-on-one man game Jacob Phaup compared to its UVA counterpart, Petey LaSalla. LaSalla was one of the top FOGOs in the nation last year, earning All-American honors at the end of the season. But against SU it was dominated by Phaup, who won an incredible 46 from 60 (76.7%) in both games.

Highlighting the fact that sometimes matchups can hinge on which technique works best in an individual match, Phaup, a FOGO great in his own right, held the X against one of the nation’s best at the position.

The two are back this year to fight again. And to win, Orange might need Phaup to be as good this year.

Bobby’s back

Goalkeeper SU Bobby Gavin came off a huge effort against Maryland, making 11 saves to help keep the game close in times when Orange’s offense was struggling.

A week later, Gavin will return to the place he called home at the start of this school year. Bobby didn’t finalize his transfer to SU until the end of the fall semester, so he’s going back to a place he knows and who knows him.

Will Bobby’s knowledge of the Virginia shooters be an advantage for SU, or will the Virginia offense know exactly where to place the ball against their former goaltender?

Injury issues

Virginia comes into the weekend a bit banged up all over the pitch. The headliner is the striker Matt Moore, one of the most dangerous weapons in Virginia and one of the best attackers in the whole country. Moore did not play last weekend against Towson and the head coach Lars Tiffany said it’s day to day and doubtful for this weekend.

Tiffany said the same of the midfielder Jeff Conner and defender Ben Wayer, which means the Cavs have players in all three phases of their roster who are stoned before this one. Keep an eye out for these names as their inclusion or absence could play a big role in deciding this match.

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