Princeton hands Hopkins first loss of season

March 01, 2013 | WNST Staff

BALTIMORE, MD – The 12th-ranked Princeton men’s lacrosse team outscored host and third-ranked Johns Hopkins 5-1 over the final 21 minutes of the game as the Tigers slipped past the Blue Jays, 11-8, at Homewood Field Friday evening. The win, Princeton’s third straight at Homewood Field, improves the Tigers’ record to 2-0, while the Blue Jays slip to 3-1 with the loss.

Johns Hopkins hadn’t scored in more than 12 minutes and trailed 6-4 early in the third quarter after senior Jeff Froccaro scored off a nifty two-man game behind the goal with his brother, Jake Froccaro. That two-goal lead for the Tigers was gone less than four minutes later as Johns Hopkins grabbed the lead and all the momentum with three goals in a span of exactly three minutes.

Freshman Holden Cattoni, who had taken exactly one shot entering the game, needed just 63 seconds to score the first two goals of his career to knot the game. He fired home the first of his two strikes after a nifty cut to the goal, where sophomore Wells Stanwick fed him to make it 6-5 and then fired home his second off a feed from seniorLee Coppersmith. When senior Zach Palmer added an extra-man goal with 9:23 remaining in the third quarter, the Blue Jays had a 7-6 lead.

That lead held for just over three minutes before Jeff Froccaro swept across the top of the box and blew a high 12-yarder past Blue Jay goalie Pierce Bassett and the Tigers took the lead for good with 3:31 remaining in the third quarter when Mike MacDonald was on the tail end of some nifty passing and beat Bassett in tight with an extra-man goal.

The Blue Jays had several chances to pull even, but the Tigers held them off and eventually grabbed some breathing room early in the fourth quarter when junior Tom Schreiber ripped a 15-yard laser just inside the post to make it 9-7 and MacDonald dodged from behind the goal to add his second of the game midway through the period to give Princeton its first three-goal lead of the night.Brandon Benn’s fourth goal of the game less than 40 seconds after MacDonald’s goal drew the Blue Jays within two at 10-8, but Princeton senior captain Chris White scored a transition goal two minutes later after one of JHU’s six fourth-quarter turnovers to close the scoring.

The late-game surge for the Tigers came after the teams traded the first six goals of the game and alternated three-goal runs, including the one for the Blue Jays that was capped by Palmer’s extra-man tally that made it 7-6 in the third.

Jeff Froccaro, Schreiber and Jake Froccaro all scored in the opening period for the Tigers, but those goals were matched by two of Benn’s four goals and a strike by Stanwick.

The Blue Jays took their first lead of the game less than five minutes into the second quarter when Benn fired home his third goal of the game off a skip pass from Coppersmith, but that would be the last goal the Blue Jays would score in the first half.

Over the final 9:18 of the second quarter and the first two minutes of the third the Froccaro brothers sandwiched tallies around the second of Schreiber’s three goals to give Princeton the 6-4 lead, which Cattoni erased with his back-to-back strikes. Palmer’s behind-the-back extra-man goal came just under two minutes after Cattoni’s second goal, but Princeton would take the lead for good before the end of the third and the Blue Jays would get no closer than two in the final period.

Jeff Froccaro and Schreiber both recorded hat tricks, while Jake Froccaro scored twice and added two assists to pace the Tigers. Freshman Matt O’Connor posted 10 saves in goal for the Tigers, including four in the first quarter, when the Blue Jays outshot the Tigers, 17-5.

The Tigers were 1-of-2 with the extra-man, but scored three goals in situations where they were playing with the 30-second stall warning in effect. The last two of those three goals pushed two-goal Tiger leads to three.

Benn notched his fourth hat trick of the season with his four goals and Cattoni scored twice to account for JHU’s multi-goal scorers. Coppersmith entered the game with 30 career goals and no assists in 42 games played before notching three assists against the Tigers.

The loss overshadowed another strong performance on faceoffs by Johns Hopkins senior Mike Poppleton, who won 15-of-22 against four different Princeton players. Poppleton also grabbed a game-high eight ground balls.

Johns Hopkins will return to action on Tuesday, March 5 as Mount St. Mary’s comes to Homewood Field. Princeton will return to action that night as well as the Tigers host Villanova.

#12 Princeton (2-0) 3-2-3-3/11
#3 Johns Hopkins (3-1) 3-1-3-1/8

GoalsP: Jeff Froccaro-3, Schreiber-3, Jake Froccaro-2, MacDonald-2, White. J: Benn-4, Cattoni-2, Palmer, Stanwick. AssistsP: Jake Froccaro-2, Ambler, Jeff Froccaro, Orban. J: Coppersmith-3, Palmer-2, Ranagan, Stanwick. SavesP: O’Connor-10, Kavanagh-0. J: Bassett-7. Shots: P-33. J-37. EMOP: 1-for-2. J: 1-for-4.Attendance: 2,352.