No. 15 Villanova Defeats Providence 15-7, Heading to BIG EAST Semi-Finals
Connor Kirst
April 29, 2017

Providence, R.I. -

Strong defense and a great offensive performance from Jack Curran, Jake Froccaro, Christian Cuccinello, and Connor Kirst lifted the Wildcats over the Friars 15-7 in the season finale. 

With the win the Wildcats finish conference play with a 4-1 record and will be the No. 2 seed in the BIG EAST Tournament and will play Providence, the 3 seed on Thursday, May 4th.  Game time is set for 7 P.M. in Providence, Rhode Island and will be the second game of the semi-finals, Denver and Marquette will faceoff first.

Cuccinello got the Wildcats momentum going netting two goals in the first quarter.  Also finding the back of the net during the first 15 minutes was Connor Kirst. The freshman’s goal was assisted by Devin McNamara.  This would be McNamara’s 100th career point, he is one of four active players to have accomplished this feat.

Villanova kept the goals coming scoring six in the second quarter. Jake Froccaro and Curran netted two a piece while Kirst and Cuccinello added one more to their totals for the day.  When Froccaro scored his second goal he also earned his 100th career point at Villanova.  Providence was able to get on the board twice during the quarter to make the score 9-2 at halftime. 

The Friars and Wildcats went back-and-forth in the third. The Friars netted the first at the 14:02 mark and then both teams went scoreless for over 12 minutes until Jake Froccaro ripped one into the back of the goal on a pass from Cuccinello.  Seconds later Providence add a goal but the Wildcats scored the final of the quarter with just 13 seconds to go.  It was Curran who would net his third on a pass from Cuccinello.  Villanova led 11-4 heading into the final quarter. 


 

 

Keenan Assaraf got Providence on the board first in the fourth but Connor Kirst was able to net his third just minutes later setting a new career high.  Curran got one more into the back of the net to finish with four on the day on a pass from Cuccinello.  The junior attackman would finished with a team high seven points on three goals and four assists.  Timmy Hardy and Kieran Byrnes scored the final two goals for the Wildcats to make the final 15-7. 

Senior defenseman Danny Sweeney had a team high five ground balls and a caused turnover, moving him to 9th all-time in program history in caused turnovers.  Nick Tortoriello had two ground balls while Connor Kirst collected six and went 5-for-10 from the faceoff X.  Nick Testa picked up his seventh win of the season.  The sophomore goalkeeper had 10 saves on the day. 

Villanova and Providence will faceoff again this Thursday, May 4th in the BIG EAST semi-finals hosted at Providence.  Game time is set for 7 P.M. and can be seen on CBS Sports Network.    

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