Syracuse lacrosse crushes Binghamton in 13-5 win

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ More than 24 hours before Syracuse took the field against Binghamton, John Desko couldn’t help but crack a joke about his team’s next opponent.“If (Binghamton) wins, I’m sure we’re going to be on the cover of their media guide next year,” the veteran SU head coach quipped.Desko’s team was fresh off a season-turning win against then-No. 11 North Carolina. The Bearcats were sputtering in a six-game road losing streak. It was a tale of polar opposite seasons, and the Orange delivered a punchline as good as Desko could’ve imagined when he spoke on Tuesday afternoon.It took 66 seconds for Syracuse (8-4, 2-2 Atlantic Coast) to post a lead it wouldn’t relinquish, and 36 minutes for Binghamton (4-8, 2-2 America East) to get as much as a single goal in a 13-5 drubbing on Wednesday evening that serves nothing more than a tune-up for SU before its ACC tournament matchup with the Tar Heels next weekend.“After four games in 14 days, and three games in nine days,” Desko said, “I think we did what we wanted to do.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textSyracuse rounded out one its most complete games of the season, stretching out a 9-0 lead by halftime. Seven different players accounted for the early offensive blitz, emblematic of an offense that’s spread itself deep with six double-digit goal-scorers. It was Nick Mariano, the team’s leading offensive weapon, who unfurled the first goal of the game and shortly afterward snaked through George Deignan and Joe Licata on defense to notch his 27th goal of the season.That shot pushed the Orange’s lead out to 4-0, and Mariano never let go of steering the offense as he scored twice more to account for a game-high four goals. In a youthful Syracuse offense, the Massachusetts transfer has installed himself in the offense as good as anyone.“I don’t have to do a lot of dodging,” Mariano said of his ability to assimilate into SU’s system. “A lot of the guys are doing the dodging for me. They’re getting their slides, and whenever they get their slides I just try to finish the ball for them.“That’s them giving it back to me.”What he’s taken is not only a team-high 78 shots, including a team-high 12 on Wednesday, but he’s snatched the goal-scoring reins from Dylan Donahue. The senior attack has made good on a preseason blueprint that spelled out a more passive role as the offense’s distributor.He notched two goals and only one helper against the Bearcats, but still has more than double the assists of any other player on the team.“The offense is just a work in progress at all times,” Donahue said. “I’m just trying to be whatever my team needs me to be.”The offense was able to run status quo thanks to a 15-for-20 performance at the X, but never seemed to squeeze as much time per possession as Binghamton. The Bearcats held Syracuse at bay in the early going by stretching out several possessions dotted with fruitless shooting attempts.But SU took a different route, wasting little time on its offensive chances, including a Ben Williams goal scored on the run after he won the faceoff nearly uncontested. It was a flashback from a season ago, when he came up firing 13 times after winning at the X, while only doing so five times entering Wednesday.“When (Williams is) able to get the ball out in front and he has those opportunities,” Desko said, “many teams won’t rotate their close defense over. They’re going to see if the faceoff guy can make that shot.”And he did. So did Mariano, four times, and Donahue twice more. Five others rounded out the scoring ambush. Syracuse pushed and punched the lead in a game it’s head coach could only joke about losing.Now they’ll try and deliver the ultimate punchline next weekend as a young team that most said couldn’t replicate their No. 1 status from a year ago: A second straight conference championship.Said Donahue: “We’re starting to figure out who we are.” Comments Published on April 20, 2016 at 9:10 pm Contact Connor: [email protected] | @connorgrossmanlast_img

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