April 3, 2019

PU Men’s Lax Falters Late in Loss to Brown, Digging Hole in Push to Make Ivy Tournament

By Bill Alden

After pulling out a dramatic 14-13 win over No. 9 Denver University to start the week, the Princeton University men’s lacrosse team picked up where it left off as it hosted Brown last Saturday afternoon.

Princeton jumped out to a 4-0 lead as Alexander Vardaro, Emmet Cordrey, Philip Robertson, and Michael Sowers all found the back of the net in the first 10 minutes of the contest.

But things went downhill from there for the Tigers in the critical Ivy League clash. The Bears outscored Princeton 6-1 over the rest of the half to forge ahead 6-5 at intermission.

Brown extended its lead to 8-6 early in the third quarter before senior attacker Cordrey scored two straight goals to make it 8-8. The Bears responded with a 6-1 run to pull away to a 14-10 win.

A glum Princeton head coach Matt Madalon tipped his hat to Brown. “They just did a good job, they ran a little harder for a little longer out there,” said Madalon, reflecting on a contest which saw Brown end up with a 33-22 edge in ground balls and 16-11 in face-offs.

“They did a good job hitting shots and their goalie made some saves down the stretch.”

In dropping to 3-6 overall and 0-3 Ivy, Princeton misfired at the offensive end and committed defensive lapses at critical times.

“They capitalized on opportunities and we didn’t,” said Madalon. “We hit the pipes, we hit the goalie, and made careless turnovers. Defensively, we need to do a better job in our one-on- one matchups.”

With Princeton playing at Stony Brook on April 6 and hosting Siena in April 9, the Tigers will use the pair of non-league games to sharpen up.

“I am looking to shore up some systems and shore up some personnel and start playing a hell of a lot better lacrosse,” said Madalon.

After that, Princeton will head into a three-game league stretch drive where its back is to the wall as it can’t afford another loss in order to place in the top four and make the Ivy postseason tournament.

“It has always been our M.O., the team is never not going to fight,” asserted Madalon.

“These guys will be ready to get back to work. We dug ourselves a hole and the only way to go from here is to dig yourself out of it.”