Denver Clobbers Villanova 22-6

The game was moved up to Friday afternoon to avoid a winter storm in the Philadelphia area on Saturday. For the Villanova Wildcats (8-3, 1-1), the storm hit early and often as the only suspense was whether the Pioneers (8-2, 2-0) would score 20 points in the first half – they netted 18. For a team that could only score a single goal in the first half in recent games against Towson and Georgetown, the Pioneers absolutely unloaded on the Villanova Wildcats. 

Trevor Baptiste had one of the greatest games in faceoff history with school-record 27 of 30 face-off wins, 17 ground balls, 1 goal and 1 assist. During the game, he displayed all his talents by gaining control at the X every way imaginable. Certainly, this performance has to make him a Tewaarton favorite, even if he was already the odds-on-favorite heading into this game.

Ethan Walker caught fire as well with 8 goals and 1 assist to single-handedly outscore the entire Villanova squad. Denver scored 22 goals on 43 shots for the game against the Wildcats and could have scored more but took the air out of the ball in the second half.  Denver cut-down on the turnovers with only 6 heading into the fourth quarter and finished with 10.

The goalkeeping for Denver was split between Josh Matte and Alex Ready until David Windsor entered the game to mop up for the final five minutes.

Villanova was ranked 7th in the nation prior to the rout.

10 thoughts on “Denver Clobbers Villanova 22-6”

  1. Well, maybe DU should play all of its games in Philadelphia! That was the most DU goals in a single game since 2003, and one of the best Pioneer lax performances of the Tierney era (2009-present).

    Cool to know that Pioneers can destroy a top-10 team, on the road, in the biggest game of the season to date. This should be a confidence booster for a team that had answered the bell and put together a really complete performance in all facets of the game. Congrats to Trevor for the school record face-off performance and for Ethan Walker’s 8 goals, six of which were in the first half…

    The Pioneers finally get a top 10 win this year, which should help their RPI and make the Pio’s seat on the NCAA bubble a bit less warm for now, but honestly the pressure is just beginning. The Pioneers don’t yet have the NCAA resume they usually have since UNC, Ohio State and Towson aren’t so great this year, so they need to keep winning in Big East play.

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  2. Swami, I don’t know all the details on how selections are made for the lacrosse tournament. I assume it’s not too different from hockey. But I think it’s just a but alarmist (don’t you?) to be saying that the #3 ranked team in the country with an 8-2 record is on the “bubble” for the tourney. (#4 last week, but probably moving up.) Of course DU needs to keep winning games. But it sounds a bit paranoid to be talking about the #3 team like they are the #17 team.

    BTW…8 goals for Walker, and 27 out of 30 faceoffs for Baptiste. Wow, on both counts.

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    1. Heading into the game, I think Denver’s RPI was 16. If they lost, they do not play any top 10 teams the rest of the way. With auto bids, they may have had to win the BE tournament to get in…

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  3. Anonymous, I agree. With last night’s win Denver’s RPI ranking moves up to 10th, according to LaxPower. That can change with this evening’s and tomorrow’s results.
    People don’t like how Denver played and lacked scoring until last night, but they won the games. Isn’t that what really matters? Wins. Not by how much or how many goals are scored. Wins.

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  4. Jerseyb—when I wrote my comment above, I didn’t know that Denver’s RPI was that low. So I guess I can see better where Swami is coming from. But it still seems weird to be talking about a favorite to make championship weekend as a team that will be fighting just to make the tournament.

    I agree that wins are the key. But to play devil’s advocate, I think it’s reasonable to expect a team with the best face off player in history to be scoring more goals and winning by bigger margins. They beat Towson by just 1, despite winning 21 of 24 faceoffs, They beat Georgetown by just 1, despite winning 12 of 15 faceoffs. I do think that indicates a problem. But then you have yesterday’s result, so who knows?

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  5. Despite the good natured gushing on the LetsGoDU twitter feed, doesn’t it make you just a little sick that the team that we beat 5 times out of 5 this year….five times out of five…won the national title? Ugh, that Ohio State game.

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  6. As 5B West said, DU was #16 in RPI before the Villanova game. Had the season ended then, and had DU not won the Big East Tourney AQ, DU would have likely been out of the NCAA tournament altogether. The problem DU faces is the the out of conference wins this year that would normally be top 10 wins are not top 10 wins this year (OSU, Towson UNC), so while ranking is good and record is good, the RPI just wasn’t good, putting our team in bracketology danger. Now that DU’s win over Villanova is a top 10 win, we need to hope Villanova keeps winning, except when they play DU. DU has lost in the Big East Tourney for the last two seasons, and got into the NCAAs as a strong at large team. This year, we don’t yet know if the Big East will be a 1, 2 or 3 bid league…

    And as for UMD winning the hockey NCAAs with 5 losses to DU this year, remember that Notre Dame didn’t beat DU either, so DU was 7-0-1 against the top two Frozen Four finalists. That DU loss to OSU in the regional is going to chafe for a long time…

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    1. Great question. The defense has gelled faster than the offense this year, which is rare for a DU team. The Nova game would tell you that DU has the capability for great offense AND defense, but that’s a pretty small sample size of one game. I think this DU team is a bit bipolar, not unlike the DU hockey team was this year. You just don’t know what team will show up. Welcome to college sports…..

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