February 19, 2011

Virginia Overcomes Stellar Day by Drexel's Manos; 'That Kid is a Beast,' Starsia Says

from press release

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - Chris Bocklet tallied five points on four goals and Shamel Bratton added a hat trick as the No. 1 Virginia Cavaliers (1-0) topped the No. 18 Drexel Dragons (0-1) on Saturday evening, 12-9, inside Klöckner Stadium in both teams' season openers.

Shamel Bratton's three goals give him 72 career scores, moving him into No. 8 all-time in the UVA annals among midfielders.

"Obviously this game was really important," said head coach Dom Starsia. "We hadn't been practicing well for about a week now, we didn't play particularly well last week, or in our final pre-season scrimmage. So there was a little bit of concern. There was a good lacrosse team coming in, and I knew it was going to require our best effort. And it did. I gave the kids a lot of credit for hanging in there and fighting to the end. That's going to stand out as a quality we need for the rest of the season."

The Cavaliers jumped out to a 3-1 advantage on a Bocklet unassisted goal at 1:15 in the first quarter. After a Nick Trizano score at 12:56 in the second period brought the Dragons within one goal, 3-2, back-to-back scores by Bocklet and Rhamel Bratton staked UVa to a 5-2 advantage at 8:12 in the second stanza.

Drexel scored the next three goals to even the game, 5-5, with 12:40 left in the third quarter. Brendan Glynn and Scott Perri hooked up back-to-back, followed by a Robert Church score to cap the run.

UVA and Drexel traded goals back and forth until the game was knotted, 9-9. Perri scored his third goal of the game on a Kyle Bergman pass with 11:01 left in the game to bring the Dragons even. Shamel Bratton and Bocklet took over the rest of the fourth quarter to give UVA the lead for good.

Shamel Bratton scored his second and third goals of the evening and Bocklet capped the night off on a Rob Emery pass with 2:54 left in the game, giving UVA the 12-9 final advantage.

Virginia won every statistical category in the contest, except for saves. Drexel's All-American goalie Mark Manos stopped 19 saves off of 47 total UVA shots.

"That kid is beast," said Starsia. "I won't be sorry to see him graduate. We knew that he was going to be tough, and you just have to keep shooting, trying to generate good chances, and just hoping to have a couple get in there."

Rob Fortunato made his first career start between the pipes, saving a career-high 12 shots, 10 of which came in the second half.

UVA won the ground ball battle (46-43), was nearly perfect on clears (22-of-23) and won the faceoff war (13-11). Seven different Cavaliers scored goals and Chris LaPierre chipped in two assists for a team best.

Drexel was led by Perri's three goals (five total points). Brendan Glynn was second on the team with two scores, while Bergman and Perri each had two assists.

Virginia is back in action on Tuesday when Mount St. Mary's comes to Charlottesville. Faceoff is slated for 4 p.m., inside Klöckner Stadium.


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