MLAX : Wardwell has positive moments in 2nd career start; Cornell midfielder Lang pesters Syracuse

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ ITHACA – Bobby Wardwell knows there is definite room for improvement.The freshman goaltender showed flashes of brilliance in net, holding Cornell scoreless in the second quarter, but there were also some moments he wishes he could have back.‘I feel pretty comfortable, like I said, I was still pretty nervous, but I thought I settled in a little bit in the second quarter,’ Wardwell said. ‘I just need to come out and play a full 60 minutes.’In Wardwell’s second career start, he made 12 saves in an up-and-down performance between the pipes. The effort was highlighted by five vital saves in the second quarter that allowed the Orange to carry a 3-3 tie into the break. But he struggled in the second half, yielding nine goals on 15 shots.His performance was confounded by SU’s lack of possession throughout the game. The Big Red hounded the Syracuse goaltender from the opening whistle, ripping 46 shots throughout the game while also having a 39-23 groundball pick-up margin.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text‘I know I got a little tired, and I’m sure the defense got a little tired,’ Wardwell said. ‘I don’t know how long they possessed the ball for in the second and first half, but they were on offense a lot, so I think the just wore us down one by one.’In the second quarter, Wardwell responded flawlessly to the flurry of Big Red chances. He made two huge saves on the doorstep on shots by Matt Donovan and Roy Lang, and then he made two big saves on outside shots.Late in the game, Cornell broke the barrier and the shots began to fall.Wardwell struggled in the clearing game, committing a costly turnover that resulted in a goal to put the Big Red up by four late in the third quarter.SU head coach John Desko said he still saw definite room for growth from the freshman.‘I think Bob did a good job,’ Desko said. ‘I thought he forced it a couple times in clearing situations to give them some easy goals, but I thought he saw the ball pretty well, made some good saves.’Lang dominates on both ends of fieldDesko marveled at Roy Lang on film. He saw a player who carried the load for Cornell on offense and defense while also playing the wing on faceoffs and in man-down situations.On Monday, Desko spoke glowingly about the Cornell midfielder, singling out ‘No. 48’ as a key matchup for his team heading into its game against the Big Red.On Tuesday, Desko acknowledged Lang again, this time after he burned the Orange for three goals.‘We had so much focus on Lang in transition going from defense to offense, and for him to get those early goals are disappointing,’ Desko said. ‘And we found ourselves playing catch up the rest of the way.’Lang keyed a blowout 12-6 victory for Cornell, scoring three goals while also controlling possession for the Big Red with his physical 6-foot-3, 205-pound frame. He got the Big Red on the board first in the opening frame and then added the first two goals of the second half to break the game open for his team. Soon, the rest of the Cornell attack came to life, and the Orange’s defense couldn’t contain it.Lang made his presence felt almost immediately, beating SU defender Joe Fazio on a drive toward the net and absorbing a hit from Matt Harris as he sent a shot high into the back of the net.After remaining relatively quiet the rest of the half, he scored again after controlling a faceoff just 20 seconds into the third quarter. Less than three minutes later, Lang blistered a shot into the goal that left SU defender Brian Megill standing with his hands on his hips as he watched the replay.Defensively, he also drilled SU midfielder Drew Jenkins along the crease as he waited to receive a pass from Tommy Palasek with the Orange trailing 6-3 in the third quarter.His all-around performance left an impression on Desko that matched the one he noticed on film leading up to the game.‘We were focused on Lang in transition going from defense to offense. I think offense, they’re pretty balanced, they share the ball pretty well,’ Desko said. ‘… They dodged us a couple times in the zone and that hurt us. But we had to slow them just because they had so many offensive possessions for so long a time.’[email protected]  Commentscenter_img Published on April 11, 2012 at 12:00 pmlast_img

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