March 13, 2012

McArdle's Four Second-Half Goals Propel St. John's

from press release

STONY BROOK, N.Y. -- On a night where seemingly neither team could separate, St. John's (3-2, 0-1) would emerge victorious at Stony Brook (1-4, 0-0), 11-9, in a game that featured eight ties.

The Red Storm had dropped contests to the Seawolves the past two seasons and struggled to create chances offensively in both games. The last trip out to Kenneth P. Lavalle Stadium was a difficult one for St. John's as the team returned home following a 21-6 defeat to Stony Brook. The 2012 edition of the series followed a much different tune as St. John's was able to score 11 goals all in six-on-six play.

Sophomore attackman Kieran McArdle reached the 20-point plateau on the season with four goals, all in the second half, and an assist against the Seawolves. Kevin Cernuto and senior midfielders Harry Kutner and Terence Leach all finished with two goals apiece. Junior Jordan Rothman gained key possessions in a closely contested game for the Red Storm going 14-of-23 from the faceoff X and picking up five groundballs.

Jeff Lowman played solidly between the pipes once again recording 12 saves against a barrage of shots in front of net. Long stick midfielder Dillon Ayers battled every step of the way scooping up five groundballs and causing a turnover. The defensive midfield unit of Brandon Ayers, Connor Mullen and Matt Hurst registered nine groundballs and facilitated a clearing game that went 16-of-19 for the game.

After being held scoreless for the first three quarters of last year's game against Stony Brook, the Red Storm got the opening stop and Cernuto attacked from behind cage on the other end to open the scoring. Lowman would make a couple of point blank saves early on discouraging the Stony Brook attack. Cernuto would create for himself once again with an unassisted effort to settle the score at 2-1 after the first.

After Nick Watson evened the score for Stony Brook, good ball movement freed up Kutner as Joseph Leonard set up a left-handed rip into goal. Leach broke the third tie of the night after McArdle found him cutting into the middle of the Stony Brook zone unguarded. Russ Bonanno and Jeff Tundo added goals for the Seawolves before the half to give the home team a 5-4 halftime advantage.

A long Stony Brook possession was capped off by another Lowman save in front of net that eventually led to a Kutner goal from a long way out that beat the goalie to the short side. After Stony Brook went ahead 6-5, McArdle began asserting himself on the offensive end, as he scored four unassisted goals. His first second half score came on a dodge in front of center crease that allowed him to convert from short range. After Bonanno gave Stony Brook a 7-6 lead, McArdle scored with just five seconds left in the third quarter and St. John's wouldn't trail again on the night.

The Red Storm got a man-up opportunity to start the fourth and Leach would send one into the upper netting off a feed from Kutner just after the penalty expired. After a Tundo goal tied the game at eight, Charlie Holenstein found his comfort zone and unloaded a blistering shot from straight on net to give St. John's the lead for good. McArdle followed with an opportunistic goal as he scooped up a ground ball in front of net and slipped it past the Stony Brook goalie. When the Seawolves closed the gap to one, McArdle came calling once again as he challenged a Stony Brook defender and bullied his way into another goal in front of net to push it to the 11-9 final.

St. John's is now 2-3 all-time against Stony Brook and 1-2 under head coach Jason Miller. The Red Storm is now 3-1 in non-conference play, the most victories out of conference for St. John's since the 2009 season.


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