Albany vs. Providence
March 1, 2003
The Game Story:
Amherst, Mass. - Senior midfielder Jon Smith had three goals and one assist, and Albany held off a late providence rally in posting a 10-7 victory in the season opener for both teams at the University of Massachusetts' Garber Field.

Providence rallied from a six-goal deficit in the second quarter to close within 9-7 with 7:55 remaining in the contest. Dan Giuntini ended a run of three straight goals, when he converted a extra-man advantage with a shot inside the right post. Giuntini, a first-team all-conference attackman last year, finished with two goals and three assists.

The Friars, who were picked third in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference preseason poll, had two opportunities to get even closer in the final two minutes. However, Albany goalkeeper Kevin Rae, who had 13 saves, stopped Giuntini and Jon Meehan at point-blank range. Off the final save, Rae, the America East Conference's top rookie last season, delivered a length-of-the-field pass to Chris Martocchia, who sealed the outcome with 6.5 seconds to play.

Albany led 8-3 at halftime, as Smith did most of his work in the opening two quarters. Sophomore Brendan Russell also had two goals and one assist in that stretch.

Luke Daquino, a sophomore attackman, finished with one goal and three assists for the Great Danes, as the defending America East regular-season champions won their season-opening game for the first time since 1998. The Friars' Kevin Kornobis added two goals, both in the first half.