nobody movie_Weil Lacrosse vs. #5 UVA – Orange Fizz – Daily Syracuse Recruiting News & Team Coverage


The worst year in Syracuse athletics is getting worse. SU lost their fifth game in a row and really showed how far it has to go to get back to a relevant level in the ACC. UVA secured a share of the regular-season conference title with the win at the Dome.

Maybe people thought things would change in the second matchup because the Oranges were back at home where they played pretty well. That wasn’t the case, however, the Cavaliers started the first quarter hot and the third quarter hot to blows from Gary Gait and company. Let’s rewind the movie about that loss.

One of the few bright spots of the day, typical of Tucker Dordevic. The attacker is close to scoring 50 goals this season, something not achieved by a SU player since 2015. We didn’t see that the Oregonian from “X” did a ton of work. The converted attacker seemed comfortable here though, with some nice combination moves and a point win from a question mark dodge.

It is all the more impressive that Dordevic has cooked up one of the best ball defenders in the ACC in Cole Kastner. It should be interesting to see if the All-American stays in offense or moves back to midfield next season.

We’re asking ourselves this question ad nauseam this week: Where’s the two-foil? Brett Kennedy (11) falls, putting a wrench in play, but he recovers well enough for Syracuse to still get the stop. Unfortunately, Nick Caccamo (28) is slow to recognize where he needs to fill the gap. As a result, UVA hits a score with great ball movement.

Book this with misunderstandings. Nick Caccamo and Max Rosa (10) work defensively behind the cage. UVA did a great job using eye candy and screens to try and force Syracuse to make quick, decisive decisions. As we know at this point in the year, this defense isn’t very good at making these decisions. Caccamo should have slipped and picked up the Dodger here because Rosa was clearly a few steps behind him.

Here’s another case of Syracuse hurting himself by trying to play too aggressively. Saam Olexo (48) has struggled defensively all season. In this case, he gets caught watching the ball and loses his man. It only takes one step to fall behind against this UVA team and that’s exactly what’s happening here. Olexo’s task catches the pass and scores with a step down.

This is an egregious lack of execution and communication. Virginia gets a quick break opportunity and it’s exactly what it looks like. No SU defenders step forward and take the first slide to stop the ball. This move is key to fast break defense. Someone has to play the ball and force the offense to move it around. No one spoke, no one knew what to do, and the Cavs are getting a transitional gift as a result. This is basic defensive stuff…

Jackson Birtwistle. Get to know the name people. The redshirt freshman led this SU team by five goals on Saturday. On that game and throughout the game, he flashed his elite catch-and-shoot ability. The attacker is distinguished by speed not only in his shot, but also in his release. The ball is in and out of his pocket in an instant, which is extremely valuable. Maybe he could attack next season with Owen Hiltz and new Joey Spallina?

That just can’t happen. If you’ve ever wondered what disorganization looks like, look no further. In the penultimate game of the season, such mistakes simply must not happen against a top 5 team in the country. When the ball is out of play, find out who has who. Ten meters from the cage can not be a wide open man.

Syracuse really struggled with UVA’s two-man offense behind goal. It just doesn’t make sense why these errors happen. The only thing that comes to mind is that Dave Pietramala, SU’s DC, handcuffs his players and forces them not to switch and mark certain players.

That shows here, because Nick Fratterigo (25) also has to run a lot more than he should. He works with Carter Rice (12), who could easily have switched and picked up the Dodger. Instead, the pair doesn’t trade and the UVA attacker uses Rice as a sight to free his hands and score.

Look, there are about ten more games we could go through this week, but let’s not waste our time. That defense has been terrible this year against offenses with an actual pulse. Yes, it was the first year under a new coaching regime and the talent cupboard is pretty empty. However, this unit got worse compared to last year and progressively worse as the season progressed. Basic things like fundamentals just aren’t understood. This side of the ball has a LONG way to go before it is respected in the ACC.

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