Denison vs. Widener
May 7, 2008
The Game Story:
Sophomore specialist Conner Detjen (Winnetka, Ill./Loyola Academy) won 10 consecutive face-off's to open the game setting the tone for another brilliant second quarter from the Denison offensive unit. Their nine goal burst in the second frame would send the Big Red to a 19-6 victory over visiting Widener in the first round of the 2008 Division III Men's Lacrosse Championship from Piper Stadium in Granville.

The win marks the fourth time in school history that Denison has advanced beyond the first round of the NCAA Tournament. They will travel to No. 3 Gettysburg on Saturday (May 10) for a rematch with the Bullets. The two teams last met on March 9 where Gettysburg came away with a 9-4 win over the Big Red.

Detjen set the tone immediately when the won the opening face-off and streaked down the center of the field for the game's first goal after just five seconds had elapsed on the game clock. Denison would take a 4-3 lead into the second quarter but a four-goal streak by the Big Red in under two minutes would give Denison some major momentum and open up an 8-3 lead with 10:27 to play in the quarter.

Widener would strike back with two goals, cutting the lead to 9-5, but beginning with 2:56 left in the second quarter, DU would slam the door and rattle off nine unanswered goals that would stretch late into the fourth quarter.

Senior middie Rick Mackessy (Hudson, Ohio/Hudson) scored three goals and added two assists to lead the team in scoring. Emmett Jones (Colorado Springs, Colo./Air Academy) posted three goals and chipped in one assist while first-year Tanner Smith (Boxford, Mass./Brooks School) tallied two goals and three assists. Also checking in with four points was senior Dan Maude (Wayne, Pa./Haverford School) who posted two goals and two assists.

Denison was 20-for-28 in the circle and was led by Detjen who managed to raise his already impressive face-off percentage to a stellar 68 percent following his 17-for-23 performance. He also led the team with eight ground balls. The man-up unit was 4-for-8, powered by a 2-for-3 showing in the second quarter when Mackessy and Nate Hall (Columbus, Ohio/Upper Arlington) both chalked up power play goals.

Alex Baruch (Richmond, Va./St. Christopher's) played 50 minutes in goal and allowed just five goals while recording 11 saves. Denison outshot Widener 40-33 and out hustled the Pride to a 15 margin in ground balls.

Denison needed just nine goals entering the game to break the school's single-season scoring record of 237 set in an 18-game schedule in 1984. Jones' goal at the 2:56 mark of the second quarter was the record-breaker as Denison now has scored 248 goals in just 16 contests. Denison's 14 victories is one off the school, single-season record set in 1982. This also runs DU's winning streak to 11 games, which is just one off the school record, also set in 1982.