February 19, 2011

Bucknell Opens with Rout of Canisius

from press release

LEWISBURG, Pa. – The Bucknell men’s lacrosse team was dominant in all phases of the game in a 17-2 rout of Canisius in the 2011 season opener Saturday at frigid Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium. Nick Gantsoudes (Redding, Conn./Avon Old Farms) scored a career-high five goals to lead the offense, Jake Clarke (Cos Cob, Conn./Greenwich) was strong as usual on faceoffs, and goalie Kyle Feeney (Greenwich, Conn./Greenwich) stopped nine of 10 shots on goal to backstop a terrific performance by the defense.

With near-gale force winds sending the wind chill temperature into the teens, the Bison warmed things up with an eight-goal second period to blow open a 2-1 game. They led 10-1 at the half and 14-1 after three quarters before emptying the bench.

Gantsoudes, a junior midfielder, had never scored more than one goal in a game in his career. But on Saturday he had his hat trick by the 10-minute mark of the second quarter, and he scored once more in the third and fourth periods for a five-goal day. Charlie Streep (New Canaan, Conn./Loomis-Chaffee) scored the first goal of the season 4:56 into the game, and he finished with three goals and two assists.

Freshman Todd Heritage (Cheshire, Conn./Cheshire) started at attack and scored three times in his collegiate debut. Other multi-point scorers were Ryan Klipstein (Califon, N.J./Rutgers Prep) with a goal and two assists, Billy Eisenreich (Chatham, N.J./Chatham) with a goal and an assist, and Jordan Nies (Basking Ridge, N.J./Ridge) also with a goal and an assist.

Nies led a productive offensive day for the short-stick defensive middies. His assist went to Streep on an electrifying fastbreak goal, and then Nies scored himself late in the third quarter when he bullied his way through a defender and scored with a diving shot while drawing a slashing penalty. Another d-middie entering the scoring column was junior Andrew VanValkenburg (Garden City, N.Y./Lawrenceville), who scored his first career goal late in the second quarter on a transition play that was set up by a huge hit by Clarke at midfield.

Also earning his first career point was sophomore attackman Ronjohn Dadd (Ijamsville, Md./Urbana), who assisted on a pretty wraparound goal by Heritage in the fourth quarter.

Clarke went 9-for-14 at the faceoff X with seven ground balls, while Ryan Gutowski (Owings Mills, Md./Calvert Hall) went 5-for-9. Clarke also helped shut down Canisius’ All-America midfielder Adam Jones. The MAAC Preseason Player of the Year was only able to attempt two shots and finished with just an assist on the Golden Griffins’ fourth-quarter goal. He did extend his points streak to 30 straight games, the fourth-longest streak in the nation.  

Feeney played the first three quarters in goal and was very sharp. He made nine saves while allowing only one goal, a shot by Mike Rautenstrauch that redirected in off the back of a Biosn defenseman to make it a 2-1 game with 6:43 left in the first quarter. The Golden Griffins did not score again until Jimmy Haney’s goal with 9:51 left in the fourth.

Josh Briskman (Weston, Conn./Weston) replaced Feeney in the fourth quarter and made two point-blank saves while allowing just the one goal.

Bucknell’s starting close defense trio of John Collett (Randolph, N.J./Delbarton), Alex Lyons (Owings Mills, Md./Boys’ Latin) and Jason Neithamer (Alexandria, Va./St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes) kept the ball out of harm’s way all day, and the trio combined for seven ground balls and five caused turnovers.

Bucknell outshot Canisius 42-16 and won the ground ball battle 36-22. Canisius had 24 turnovers to 20 for the Bison. 

The 15-goal margin of victory was Bucknell’s largest since a 21-5 win over Lafayette in 1996. The 17 goals scored and the two goals allowed are both program records for a season opener.

The Bison return home next Saturday to face Villanova at noon.


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