#6 UVa. men’s lax overcomes sluggishness to top Penn

Steele Stanwick scored a career-high six goals and finished with seven points to lead the No. 6 Virginia Cavaliers (11-3) to a 10-8 victory over the Penn Quakers (3-10), Friday evening at the Whitman’s Sampler Mile High Classic, inside Sports Authority Field and Mile High.

With the seven points, Stanwick now moves up to No. 22 all-time in NCAA Division I career points with 260. Virginia is now 7-0 all-time in Inside Lacrosse events.

The win gives the UVa men’s lacrosse team its first win in the state of Colorado in three tries and improves the Cavaliers’ all-time record against Penn to 4-2, a series that began in 1929. UVa has won four in a row against the Quakers.

Stanwick was named MVP of the game with his seven-point performance. He was presented with a giant box of Whitman’s Sampler chocolates in a postgame ceremony.

“I am really happy that we won the game,” said Virginia head coach Dom Starsia. “I was really proud of our team at the end of the day, credit to the University of Pennsylvania for playing great. It sort of really felt like they [Penn] got some momentum as the game went on. It just was a struggle for us, a little bit of a battle for us throughout. But the fact that we kind of hung in there and made the plays that we needed to in the fourth quarter, I think we could be proud of that, coming into this setting and this situation and touging this game out. I told the kids in the huddle afterward, sometimes the hard wins are the best ones.”

The game clicked for Virginia early, as Stanwick recorded his 22nd career hat trick in the first quarter as the Cavaliers opened up a 4-1 advantage. Chris Bocklet started the run and Stanwick finished with three-straight goals.  Matt Kugler and Owen Van Arsdale provided assists on Stanwick goals.  Matt White assisted Bocklet’s tally.

Penn answered with a 4-0 run to take its only lead of the game, 5-4, with 2:06 left before the intermission. Dan Savage scored three goals during the run, while Ryan Parietti tallied one score. However, UVa was able to even the score, 5-5, when White found Stanwick on the crease with 43 seconds left in the second quarter.

Rob Emery started the second half scoring with an unassisted goal at the 10:30 mark in the third quarter, giving UVa the 6-5 lead. After Parietti tied the game for Penn at 3:58 in the third quarter, UVa reeled off a 4-1 run deep into the fourth quarter, clinching the game.  Stanwick scored twice and assisted a Bocklet score to cap the run with 1:14 left in the game. John Conneely scored with 11 seconds left in the game to cinch the two-goal Penn defeat.

Virginia won the battles on shots (33-31), ground balls (31-27) and faceoffs (11-10).  Stanwick’s six goals gives the senior 123 for his career, passing Danny Glading (119) for eighth place all-time at UVa.

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