February 18, 2012

Hofstra Squeaks Past Sacred Heart, 11-9

from press release

HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. – Lance Yapor scored a career-high four goals and added one assist and Andrew Gvozden made 11 saves in net as 14th-ranked Hofstra held off Sacred Heart, 11-9, in the season opener for both teams at James M. Shuart Stadium Saturday afternoon.

Yapor, a sophomore who netted two goals and three assists in a win over UMass last year during an injury–shortened season, equaled his cumulative point total from 2011 in his first game of 2012. Pride juniors Aaron Jones and Adrian Sorichetti each added two goals while freshman Tyler Johnston added two assists. Gvozden, an All-America honorable mention in 2011 after leading the nation in goals against average, made 11 saves to record his 27th career victory.

Sacred Heart was led by sophomore Tom Sardelli with two goals while classmate Cody Marquis added one goal and two assists. Graduate-student goalie Zack Frank also made 11 saves in the Pioneer cage. The Pioneers outshot Hofstra, 33-30 but the Pride picked up 34 ground balls to Sacred Heart's 29.

After being deadlocked at 5-5 at the half, Hofstra opened the second half with back-to-back goals by sophomores Stephen DiGiovanni and Corey Caputo to take a 7-5 lead. DiGiovanni scored an unassisted tally with 9:15 on the clock, while Caputo, a defender, converted a feed from A.J. Leary with 7:30 remaining in the quarter. After Tom Sardelli scored on a low shot almost three minutes later, Yapor tallied his second and third goals of the game in the final 1:23 of the third to give Hofstra a 9-6 lead after three quarters.

But Sacred Heart didn't give up and closed the deficit with goals by Marquis and Shane Foley in the first 4:07 of the fourth quarter to close to 9-8. But Yapor was Johnny-on-the-spot almost two minutes later, taking a pass from sophomore linemate Torin Varn and scoring his fourth with 8:57 to play to put Hofstra back up by two at 10-8. Sophomore Mike Mawdsley brought the Pioneers back to within one, off a pass from Marquis with 5:47 to play. But Sorichetti scored two minutes later, from Yapor, for the final tally of the contest.

The Pride and the Pioneers battled through the first two quarters and settled nothing as the two teams went into the locker room at halftime tied. Torin Varn opened the scoring just seven seconds into the contest as junior John Antoniades won the face-off, carried the ball into the box and found Varn camped to the left of the goal. Varn beat Sacred Heart goalie Zack Frank to give the Pride a 1-0 lead.

The lead was short-lived as Tom Sardelli tied the game 1:09 later on a running shot from 12 yards out on the left side. Hofstra answered with back-to-back goals by Sorichetti, from 15 yards out, and Jones, on a bounce shot, to take a 3-1 advantage with 7:44 to play in the first. But senior Matt Ferrino scored on a low bullet 1:12 later and graduate-student Billy Skelos scored, on a run across the crease, with 14 seconds to play in the first quarter. The Pioneers took their first lead of the half 3:27 into the second quarter when senior Chris Casey found classmate Aaron Lupo on the crease for a 4-3 lead.

The Pride answered with consecutive goals by Lance Yapor, off a rebound in front at the 5:54 mark, and Jones' second of the contest, on a high bullet from seven yards, with 3:50 to play in the half to take a 5-4 lead. But defender Andrew Newbold knotted the game at 5-5 with an end-to-end rush after a Pride turnover with 1:18 to play. The Pioneers outshot Hofstra, 21-16 in the half and picked up 21 ground balls to the Pride's 17.


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