Men’s Lacrosse: Rode’s 17 saves key #8 Virginia in 12-11 win over #19 High Point
Alex Rode made 17 saves, including 12 in the second half, to help #8 Virginia outlast #19 High Point, 12-11, on Wednesday at Klöckner Stadium.
High Point scored four goals in the final frame to push the envelope, courtesy of 12 UVA turnovers. Rode made six of his saves in the fourth quarter to keep the Panthers at bay.
Ian Laviano’s man-up goal with 12:37 left to play proved to be the difference.
“I loved how we started this game. I love the energy from the bench and I loved how our guys got excited for a 3 p.m. start in the middle of the week. Coming out of class at noon, 12:30 p.m., as a coach you get concerned – are we ready to play? I was so excited with the start we had,” UVA coach Lars Tiffany said.
The Cavaliers were indeed humming in the first quarter, taking a 6-1 lead into the second frame. Peter Garno scored the first of his two goals 52 seconds into the game to get things started. Six different Cavaliers scored in the quarter and Ben Wayer capped the spurt with his first career goal with three seconds left on a Connor Shellenberger helper.
Timely UVA turnovers, faceoff wins and transition helped High Point get back in the game as the Panthers went on a 5-0 run to start the second quarter, tying the game at 6-6. Asher Nolting scored his only goal of the game to cap the run on an extra-man situation with 7:32 left to play before the intermission.
UVA responded with goals by Charlie Bertrand and Xander Dickson to take an 8-6 lead into the break. UVA never relinquished the lead again.
The Cavaliers extended its lead in the third quarter to four goals, 11-7, via two goals and assist by Matt Moore.
“High Point, you have to give them credit. This is never going to be an easy opponent to play,” Tiffany said. “They popped one forward on the fast break off the face-off, and then they had another transition goal, and all of a sudden it was 6-3 and they had some momentum going. It’s a tribute to Jon Torpey and the way he builds his teams, his men. They’re not intimidated by anyone, and they made some nice adjustments with their offense.
“I give them a lot of credit for pushing a little lower with their 1-4-1 wing dodge and making some really nice looks through our defense. We talked about that at halftime, and we made some adjustments there.”