No. 10 Villanova Rolls Rutgers, 12-7
April 26, 2011
VILLANOVA, Pa. - Led by the three point performances of Jack Rice, Nick Doherty and Max Hart, the 10th-ranked Villanova Wildcats (10-3, 2-2) posted a solid 12-7 victory over Rutgers (5-8, 0-4) on Tuesday evening. Eight different players posted points in the BIG EAST win.
With tonight's contest, Villanova gains their 10th win of the season which also marks their third-straight year winning at least 10 games.
A high-scoring first quarter saw Villanova get off to a quick start, with Matt Bell (Severna Park, Md.) and C.J. Small (San Diego, Calif.) netting the first two scores of the game at the 13:40 and 9:25 marks. Rutgers responded less than a minute later with goals by Kevin Hover and Michael Diehl, tying the game at 2-2.
Villanova would end the quarter with three straight goals from Hart, Bell and Rice to give VU a 5-2 lead.
A quiet and defensive-minded second quarter would see an exchange in goals from RU's Scott Klimchak and Villanova's Will Casertano, putting the scoreboard at 6-3 in favor of VU going into halftime.
Coming out of the gate to start the second half, Rice began the Villanova scoring, putting one past RU goalkeeper Rudy Butler at the 13:21 mark and giving VU a 7-3 lead.
That lead would shrink as Rutgers got consecutive scores from Scott Klimchak and Diehl to cut the deficit to two with 7:47 left in the quarter.
With 4:49 remaining, Villanova would respond with Doherty giving the Wildcats an 8-5 lead, then just 27 seconds later Hart cashed in as the Wildcats went in front, 9-5.
The final quarter would be dominated by the Wildcats as Doherty, Rice and Michael Vigilante (Massapequa, N.Y.) each tallied goals to solidify the victory. RU's Kevin Hoover posted two goals in the final 15 minutes, but it wouldn't be enough as Rutgers dropped their seventh-straight contest and fourth BIG EAST match.
The Wildcats saw perhaps their best effort at the face-off X for the season, with Thomas Croonquist (North Caldwell, N.J.) and Nolan Vihlen (Germantown, Tenn.) winning 13 of 22 attempts against the top-ranked face-off man in the country in RU's Christopher Mattes.
Defensively, Rutgers Rudy Butler captured 11 saves in the defeat while Villanova's Billy Hurley (Morristown, N.J.) made three in the win.
Villanova will return to action for their final regular-season home game of the year on Saturday, April 30th at 3 p.m. versus Providence. The day will also mark the final home game of eight graduating seniors who will be honored in a pre-game ceremony.