March 29, 2014

Hofstra Takes Key Win Over Towson Despite "Dutch Rain"

by Joe Pantorno | LaxMagazine.com | Twitter

Photo by Kevin P. Tucker

In-Game Blog Replay

 

Postgame Video: Hofstra coach Seth Tierney

The rain on Long Island started early Saturday afternoon and simply did not stop; even when a big lacrosse game had to be played that very evening.

For the Hofstra men's lacrosse team, the harsh conditions were a welcome sight as "Dutch Rain," labeled by senior attack Torin Varn, provided a winning backdrop in the Pride's 9-7 victory over Towson.

"To be honest, we love playing in the rain," Varn said with a smile. "Coach wasn't happy about a couple turnovers on the perimeter, but you can't blame it on the rain. It was raining just as much on Towson's sideline as it was on ours."

With two goals and an assist, it was clear how much Varn enjoys the wet weather, but Hofstra could take greater pride in the fact that with the win, they clinched a spot in the Colonial Athletic Association postseason.

"Huge conference win in tough conditions," Hofstra head coach Seth Tierney said. "To be 3-0 in the conference, that's something you earn. And if you get it in week six or seven of the season, that's something we haven't been able to do in the past year or two."

The past three years to be exact. Hofstra last clinched a spot in the CAA playoffs in 2011. Since then, trip ups and letdowns kept the Pride out of postseason contention with a constant thorn in their side being the very Towson team they defeated on Saturday night.

Most notably, in 2012, Towson, trailing 9-3 in the fourth quarter, scored seven unanswered goals to take down Hofstra in overtime; a result that sent Hofstra spiraling further into mediocrity.

"It feels great to get a win against Towson," Varn said. "They've had our number the past couple years. But today was a hard-fought win and I'm really proud of the guys."

Hofstra's defense did well to shut down a strong Towson attack that contained senior midfielder Thomas DeNapoli to just three points on the night (one goal, two assists).

"Towson has a lot of firepower. They can let it go," Tierney said. "We had to know the hands...Just being locked in all week long, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, guys were locked in on what we were doing defensively."

Outscoring Towson 3-1 in the third quarter, Hofstra used a pair of goals from redshirt sophomore midfielder Korey Hendrickson, who missed all of last season, to take control of the game, stymieing a late Towson comeback attempt in the fourth quarter to secure the win.

Since his return, Hendrickson has displayed an aggressive style of play with an offensive prowess that has made him valuable to Hofstra this season.

"I think everyone helped me get back into it," Hendrickson said. "They pushed me. I definitely have room to grow, any player does."

Hendrickson, like Varn and the rest of his team, likes playing in the rain, too. 

"Yeah, I love the rain," Hendrickson said. "I'm not sure why."

Explanations might be hard to come by, but Hofstra might want to play all of their games in the rain. Despite 28 total turnovers (Hofstra with 16, Towson with 12) and a combined 69 ground balls, Hofstra will take the win and the wet any day, any way they can.

Varn understands that. "We just learn to embrace it." 


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