Denver Scores the Game-Winning Goal Midway Through the Fourth Quarter After a Long Offensive Possession
VILLANOVA, PA 4/9/2022 –
An expected closely contested contest lived up to expectations. The Denver Pioneers picked up an important win in the Big East standings over the Villanova Wildcats 12 – 10 at Villanova Stadium. Neither team had more than a two-goal lead during the game. The teams would match runs for runs and goals for goals. Denver got what became the game-winner with 7:08 to play on a man-up goal by Jack Hannah, his third of the game. Both teams are 1 – 1 in the Big East behind Georgetown.
“A couple of pipes here, a couple of pipes there, a dropped pass, we’re six and four and seven of our games were one or two goal games with five minutes to go,” Villanova Coach Mike Corrado said. “That’s the way it goes. They made a couple of plays at the end that beat us.”
The Fourth Quarter Possession that Tilted the Game Towards Denver
After three quarters the Pioneers held a 10 – 9 lead after Wildcats midfielder Jack Campbell scored his fourth goal of the game, and thirty-third of the season, at 12:38 unassisted. The game would turn during a long offensive possession by Denver following the goal. Nova won the faceoff, but a turnover gave the ball back to Denver with 11:05 on the clock. The Pioneers held the ball for the next 3:57 getting 8 shots before finally getting the man-up goal by Hannah late in the shot clock for an 11- 9 lead.
“They kept on hitting the pipe or getting a save and kept on getting a restart,” Corrado pointed out. “I didn’t call a timeout. We fouled at the end of the possession, three seconds left on the shot clock. Now we’re playing a man-down and they scored. I don’t know if it was the turning point or not, but it was a big goal for them and a tough one for us. We played four minutes of defense and didn’t give up a goal.”
Villanova Fights Back
Villanova gamely tried to get back in proximity. The Wildcats had a breakout play, but AJ Mercurio back-stick check gave the ball back to Denver. After a turnover the Cats made it a one-goal game with 1:10 showing on the clock as attack JP Basile scored. Brett Baskin assisted.
Denver ended it when Alec Stathakis won the ensuing faceoff and took it to the net scoring a goal 16 seconds later. He was one of ten Pioneers who found the back of the net.
Attack Luke Keating netted two goals for Villanova giving him 17 for the year. He added 2 assists, and leads the team with 22 in that statistic. Baskin and Basile had 2 goals for the Cats and each assisted once. Campbell also had a helper. He leads the team with 46 points.
Villanova registered 48 shots. Denver goal keeper Jack Thompson made 15 saves. The Pioneers shot the ball 40 times. Nova goal keeper Will Vitton got 10 saves. The Cats won 17 of 26 faceoffs.
Next Up for Nova
Villanova drops to 6 – 4 for the season. The Cats take to the field again on April16 hosting Providence. Denver gets above .500 at 6 – 5. All Big East to the end of the season followed by the conference tournament.
“It’s not a good result and we five league games, so they all mean a lot,” Corrado said. “Losing this one is tough. We’ve got three left so let’s see what happens.”
These teams may see each other again, next time with more on the line.
Written By: Glenn Papazian
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