Villanova vs. Binghamton
February 26, 2005
The Game Story:
VILLANOVA, Pa. - In the 2005 home opener, Villanova (1-1) received a pair of insurance goals in the fourth quarter and went on to a 5-2 victory over Binghamton (0-1) in front of 357 fans on Saturday afternoon at Villanova Stadium.

A clutch performance by junior goalie Joe Canuso (Moorestown, N.J.) in the fourth quarter was the game's deciding factor. The Bearcats outshot their hosts 13-3 over the final 15 minutes, but Canuso came up with seven of his 14 saves during the period to hold Binghamton at bay. The Bearcats wound up with a 24-18 edge in shots for the game.

Villanova held a 3-2 lead heading into the final stanza, but aided the cause with a pair of insurance goals. Junior attack Brendan O'Donnell (Mountain Lakes, N.J.) was involved in both scores. He assisted senior midfielder Chris Kramer (Massapequa Park, N.Y.) on an extra-man goal with 11:03 remaining, and then scored his second goal of the game with 5:35 left to close the scoring.

O'Donnell, who was the team's top point-scorer last season, contributed two goals and an assist to today's victory. Junior midfielder Matt Starker (Summit, N.J.) added a goal and an assist, while sophomore midfielder Garrett Hohendorf (White Lake, Mich.) added the other goal. Sophomore midfielder Eric Heidenberger (Washington, D.C.) also had an assist for the Wildcats.

Jeff Santucci had a goal and an assist to lead Binghamton, which also got one goal from Stephen Smith and an assist from Rob Williams. Goalie Kevin McKeown saved five shots for the Bearcats.

Villanova jumped on the board first and led 2-0 after the first quarter. O'Donnell scored a goal just over two minutes into the game on an assist from Heidenberger, and Starker added an unassisted goal midway through the period. Binghamton scored its only goal of the first half with nine seconds left in the second quarter, when Smith converted a pass from Santucci.

Villanova began a three-game homestand with today's game. The Wildcats return to action next Saturday at Noon when they host Penn.