Delaware vs. Manhattan
March 19, 2005
The Game Story:
NEWARK, DE -- The University of Delaware took a three-goal lead into the final period and held off a late Manhattan rally to post a 9-8 men's lacrosse victory Saturday at Rullo Stadium.

Delaware, coming off a 9-8 loss to No. 5 Georgetown Wednesday night, improved to 5-3 as the Blue Hens won for the third time in the last four outings. Jordan Hall scored twice and dished out two assists, Micardo Celicourt scored a season-high two goals, and Cam Howard dished out two assists to lead a balanced Blue Hen effort.

Seven different Delaware players scored a goal as the Hens outshot Manhattan 37-23. Delaware goalkeeper Chris Collins came up big in the nets with 12 saves, including one on the final play of the game to preserve the victory.

Manhattan, which suffered its second straight one-goal loss, fell to 1-4 despite Justin Otto's game-high three goals and an assist. Chris Oppito added three assists while Greg Lewis added one goal and one assist and Justin Henry posted 11 saves.

Otto's third goal of the game - and second of the period - came with 7:42 left and cut the Delaware lead to 9-8, but that would end the day's scoring. The Jaspers had the chance to tie it several times in the closing minutes but couldn't pull out the win. A shot from 20 yards out by Lewis with one second left was saved by Collins.

Manhattan jumped out to a 3-1 lead after a man-up goal by Eugene Tanner two minutes into the second period but the rest of the stanza belonged to Delaware. Powers took a feed from Hall and scored a man-up goal - his team-high 18th score of the season - two minutes later and Hall scored off a Howard feed with 7:22 left in the first half to tie the game at 3-3. The Hens then took a 5-3 lead into intermission when Celicourt, who had scored just one goal all season, scored twice in a span of three minutes and 13 seconds.

The two teams traded goals throughout the third period with Delaware ending the stanza up 8-5 when Andy Hipple scored off a feed from Powers with 1:10 left. A goal by Otto with 8:52 had cut the Delaware lead to 6-4 with 8:52 left, but Delaware's Alex Smith scored just six seconds later when he won the faceoff, picked up the groundball, and fired a shot past Henry. Smith, one of the nation's top faceoff specialists with a 75 percent winning percentage, won 17 of 20 faceoffs on the day.

The Jaspers struck first in the final quarter as Otto took a pass from Oppito and scored just 13 seconds in to cut the margin to 8-6. Delaware freshman Vincent Giordano answered 51 seconds later when he scored what proved to be the game-winner for a 9-6 lead with 13:56 remaining. Manhattan's Lewis scored with 10:55 left to cut the lead to 9-7 and Otto narrowed the lead to one with 7:42 left but the Jaspers could never tie it up.