The Colgate Men’s Lacrosse team caught everyone off-guard during their season-opening upset against nationally ranked no. 10 Syracuse on Friday, February 8. The Raiders dominated the Orangemen from the first draw and sealed a 12-9 win, leaving fans in the Syracuse Carrier Dome speechless.
The Raiders usually take on non-league Syracuse at the conclusion of their season. Last spring, the Raiders’ season ended in defeat, falling to Syracuse 5-17. For the first time in many years, the 2019 season opened with the Syracuse game. The week- end also marked Colgate’s first win in the Dome since 2007. With many strong returning players on the roster combined with an entirely new coaching staff, the Raiders shocked everyone’s expectations and set the stage for an exciting season ahead.
Sophomore attacker James Caddigan finished the first goal off an assist from senior midfielder Matt Donovan with 9:58 left in the first quarter. Senior attacker Sam Cleveland added another tally to the lead unassisted just about a minute later. For the next seven minutes, Syracuse tried to get themselves on the scoreboard, but the Raiders’ strong defensive efforts stifled them. With about one minute left in the quarter, senior midfielder Duncan Hoskinson added another goal for the Raiders before the Orangemen finally got on the board off a man-up play with 56 seconds left in the quarter. Syracuse was able to sneak in another goal with five seconds left in the first, still trailing the Raiders by one.
The Raiders increased their lead yet again at the start of the second quarter with goals from junior attacker Nicky Petkevich, junior midfielder Griffin Brown and another unassisted goal from Cleveland. With eight minutes left in the half, Syracuse was finally able to put up another goal from redshirt sophomore forward David Lipka. The Raiders lead the game 6-3 going into the half.
Petkevich put up an unassisted goal at the start of the second half and Syracuse answered back with senior attacker Nate Solomon scoring two man-up goals. The third quarter ended low scoring, with Colgate still ahead 7-5 entering the fourth.
The fourth quarter of the game arguably contained the most action with nine goals scored. Hotkinson completed two more goals, closing out his fourth hat trick—an impressive performance as his first career start since sophomore year. Petkevich added another two goals as well, having a career high of four goals. Senior midfielder Will Blumenberg added one for the Raiders. Colgate outscored Syracuse 5-4 in the final quarter, never giving up their lead once in the contest, and finished the game 12-9.
This huge win marks Colgate’s first win over Syracuse in 13 years. Senior goalkeeper Connor Mullen recorded 11 saves on the contest.
“Wow. I’m so proud of my guys,” Colgate’s new Head Coach Matt Karweck said of the team’s first success.
Senior midfielder Danny Healey also commented on the win.
“It was an unbelievable feeling, the offense was on fire and Mullen took some goals off the board making crazy saves,” Healey said. “It’s a nice way to move on from the last year’s disappointments and hopefully it’s the start of something special this year.”
The Colgate Raiders certainly have a road of chances ahead to prove themselves this season. Next Saturday, February 16, the Raiders will hit the road to take on the Binghamton Bearcats. Then, they’ll play No. 3 nationally ranked Maryland Terrapins on Tuesday, February 19.
Contact Lexi Luthringer at email@example.com.