In front of a loud crowd at Stuart Stadium, Hofstra defeated Delaware 12-6 to take the Colonial Athletic Association title. Delaware put together some strong rushes, but sloppy passing and poor decisions sealed their fate. Hofstra's methodical possessions, pushing when they had to and being patient when appropriate, resulted in the Pride dictating the flow of the game.
HOFSTRA UNIVERSITY PRESS RELEASE
HOFSTRA DEFEATS DELAWARE 12-6 IN COLONIAL ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION CHAMPIONSHIP GAME, EARNS AUTOMATIC BID TO NCAA TOURNAMENT
HEMPSTEAD, New York * Most Outstanding Player Athan Iannucci scored four goals and sophomore Michael Unterstein tallied three goals to lead the second ranked and top-seed Pride (16-1) to a 12-6 victory over 19th ranked and third-seed Delaware (12-5) at James M. Shuart Stadium Saturday evening in the title game of the 2006 Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) Championship. The win gives Hofstra the CAA's automatic bid to the NCAA Lacrosse Championship. Pairings will be announced Sunday night at 8:30 p.m. on ESPNews.
The title is Hofstra's first CAA Championship and comes exactly six years to the day after the Pride's last conference title game victory, against Delaware (14-4) in the 2000 America East final at Shuart Stadium. The Pride also extended their school record winning streak to 16 games and improved to 16-1, one victory from tying Duke's 2005 record for most victories in a single season.
The Blue Hens opened the scoring just 2:11 into the contest as Adam Zuder-Havens beat Pride goalie Matt Southard from 5-yards out for a 1-0 lead. It was Zuder-Havens 15th goal of the year. But Hofstra would score the next four goals and eight of the next nine to take a commanding 8-2 lead in the third quarter. Senior Tim Treubig started the first run with a goal on the run, 50 seconds later, for his 14th of the year. Then Michael Unterstein got by his defender with a stutter-step and beat Blue Hens goalie Tommy Scherr one-on-one for his eight goal of the season. Iannucci, the nation's leading goal scorer, posted his 54th on a give-and-go from John Keysor with 4:46 to play to give the Pride a 3-1 lead after one quarter.
Freshman Tom Dooley, the CAA Rookie of the Year, tallied his 35th goal of the year 51 seconds into the second period to give the Pride a 4-1 advantage. Delaware junior Cam Howard stopped the Hofstra run with his 27th goal of the year, from Jordan Hall, to close the gap to 4-2 with 8:34 to play in the half. But the Pride went on another 4-0 run with senior Chris Unterstein, the CAA Player of the Year, starting it off with his 38th goal of the year on a rush to the cage from behind almost a minute later. Iannucci then scored his second of the game and 55th of the year 29 seconds later, from 13-yards out, off a feed from senior Rob Bonaguro to give the Pride a 6-2 lead a little more than midway through the second quarter. Mike Unterstein scored with 2:48 remaining in the half to give the Pride a 7-2 advantage at the half. Treubig opened the second half scoring 2:29 in to end the second four goal run.
Dan Deckelbaum scored an unassisted goal with 10:15 left in the third to make it an 8-3 game, but Mike Unterstein scored with a rush from behind the cage with 5:50 to go after holding the ball there for a minute playing cat-and-mouse with the Blue Hen defense. Iannucci then notched the hat trick, taking an inside pass from Treubig and blasting a shot past Scherr with 2:25 remaining in the third quarter for a 10-3 lead.
Delaware scored three straight goals in the fourth quarter to make it interesting as Brett Manney scored off a feed from Hall 2:06 into the stanza to make it 10-4 in favor of the Pride. Howard scored the last two Delaware goals, the first was unassisted at 5:48 mark and the second came off a pass from Bob West with 7:24 remaining.
Following Howard's second goal, Hofstra grabbed the momentum back as senior Joe Mascaretti won the face-off and raced into the offensive zone where he found Iannucci, who converted the pass for his fourth goal of the night and 57th of the yeat and an 11-6 Pride lead. Senior Ryan Lucas closed out the scoring with an unassisted goal with 43 seconds remaining.
Hofstra senior defender Brett Moyer, the CAA Defensive Player of the Year, picked up six ground balls to lead the Pride, while Southard had a strong night in the cage, making 10 saves and also had three ground balls. Hofstra held a 44-25 advantage in total shots and had 33 ground balls on the night, compared to 28 for the Blue Hens.
Scherr, who faced 31 shots on goal, made 19 saves in a losing effort. Howard finished with three goals and four ground balls. Alex Smith won 12 of 21 face-offs and had a team-high nine ground balls.
In addition to Iannucci being named the Championship's Most Outstanding Player, he was joined on the All-CAA Championship team by teammates Ryan Kelaher, Treubig and Southard. Delaware had Scherr, Howard and Smith named to the team, while Oliver Bacon and Steve Mull from Towson and Matt Starker and Paul Genovese from Villanova were also selected.
|Athan Iannucci||(4, 0)|
|Tim Treubig||(2, 1)|
|Mike Unterstein||(3, 0)|
|John Keysor||(0, 2)|
|Joe Mascaretti||(0, 1)|
|Tom Dooley||(1, 0)|
|Rob Bonaguro||(0, 1)|
|Chris Unterstein||(1, 0)|
|Ryan Lucas||(1, 0)|
|Matt Southard||10 (0.625)|