Syracuse kept two negative University at Albany streaks alive Friday at the Carrier Dome.
The Great Danes remained winless in their all-time series with the Orange, and they failed for the seventh straight time to beat a team ranked No. 1 in the nation.
Albany Academy graduate Mike Leveille scored three times to lead the Orange over the Great Danes, 10-5, before a crowd of 5,420. The Orange, who have won nine straight, are ranked No. 1 in the USILA coaches’ poll and No. 2 by Inside Lacrosse.
Syracuse (11-1) broke an early 1-1 tie with three consecutive goals. Greg Niewieroski scored from right in front following a failed clearing attempt. Leveille then found the net from the right side by going low inside the near post. Niewieroski rolled in from the right around two defenders to complete the outburst.
UAlbany (5-7) closed the gap to 4-2 when freshman Brian Caufield sent a blast into the top corner with 2:47 left in the opening period. But the Orange used a stingy defense and forced the visitors into several clearing miscues to keep them off the scoreboard for the rest of the half. Kenny Nims, who had two goals and one assist, found an empty net when defenseman Craig McDonald coughed up the ball on his side of the field. Steven Brooks and Stephen Keogh added unassisted goals in the second quarter.
The Great Danes closed within four goals on two occasions in the third period. Jordan Levine drove from the right point to connect on a tough-angle goal with 2:23 on the clock that cut the lead to 8-4. UAlbany had many opportunities to make it a tighter a
ffair, but made seven of its 24 turnovers in the stanza.
Leveille, who extended his scoring streak to 51 straight games, helped slam door with back-to-back goals. Following a 10-second clearing violation by the Great Danes, the
senior attacker converted Brooks’ feed with 17 seconds remaining in the quarter. He added his 33rd of the season in the final period by circling back to his right and sending a high blast over reserve goalkeeper Dan McKeon’s head.
“We turned the ball over too many times and gave them too many chances,” said UAlbany coach Scott Marr, whose team was facing its fifth top-10 opponent and second No. 1 squad this season. “They rode us well and came with pressure. Their defense made it hard to get shots off, and the goalie was outstanding.”
SU goalkeeper John Galloway finished with 14 saves, one off his career-best total. Brooks, a senior midfielder, had two goals and one assist. UAlbany’s Brett Queener, who also saw time on the man-up unit, stopped 10 shots and had a career-high 10 ground balls.
“They have a solid defense that works well together and slides fast to the ball,” commented Caufield, who led his team with three goals. “We didn’t play our best, but we had good looks and they didn’t fall.”
The Great Danes, who are 2-1 in America East Conference play, return to league competition when they host Vermont Sunday at 1. They close out the regular season by hosting Stony Brook next Saturday.
Albany 2 0 2 1 — 5
Syracuse 5 2 2 1 — 10
Albany scoring: Brian Caufield 3-0, Jordan Levine 1-0, Kyle Brunk 1-0, Mike Ammann 0-2, Joe Pompo 0-1, John Alpizar 0-1. Syracuse scoring: Mike Leveille 3-0, Steve Brooks 2-1, Kenny Nims 2-1, Greg Niewieroski 2-0, Stephen Keogh 1-0, Dan Hardy 0-1.
Goalkeepers: Albany, Brett Queener, 10 saves; Dan McKeon, 0 saves; Syracuse, John Galloway, 14 saves.