Denver Falls Flat in Big EAST Tournament Final, 8-3

It took nearly 28 minutes for Denver to score – and it got worse from there. Credit Georgetown and their red-hot goalkeeper Nick Marrocco. The Hoyas allowed Denver few easy looks and pushed the Denver offense to the perimeter and created uncharacteristic Pioneer turnovers all four quarters in the 8-3 Pioneer loss.

Denver (12-3, 5-1) started ice cold on the offensive end and Josh Matte had trouble in the cage containing Georgetown (12-4, 4-2). Georgetown got a pair of goals from Jake Carraway to take a 2-0 lead on Denver in the first quarter. The Hoyas Lucas Wittenberg beat Matte at 12:52 of the second quarter to make it 3-0. Carraway made it a hat trick at 9:45 to take a 4-0 lead and chase Josh Matte from goal. Eight minutes later Denver finally caught net when Colin Rutan made it 4-1 at 2:08. But, Georgetown responded with another dagger from Wittenberg to take the steam out of any Denver comeback hopes before halftime. Georgetown goalkeeper Nick Marrocco had 9 saves in the half to 2 for Alex Ready and 0-2 for Josh Matte.

The third period was a draw. A defensive breakdown led to an easy Georgetown goal at 11:02 of the third period.  Nearly ten minutes later, Colin Rutan scored on an over-the- shoulder flip at 1:30 to make the score 6-2 entering the fourth quarter. In the fourth quarter, Matt Behrens stuffed the ball into the Pioneer net to extend the advantage to 7-2. Lucas Wittenberg scored the Hoyas second hat trick at 8:42 to create an insurmountable 8-2 lead. DU’s Rutan quickly responded with his third goal to make it 8-3. DU was unable to create scoring opportunities against the Georgetown pressure. The Hoyas ran the clock to end the contest with a decisive 8-3 win.

For whatever reason, Denver was never in this game. While Denver is nearly certain to make the playoffs, a first round NCAA road contest may be in their future. Of greater concern was Denver’s inability to get the ball inside on offence and improve their shot selection and scoring. While DU had 37 shots on goal, few were high-quality. Also, goal keeping appears to be a potential question mark heading into the NCAA’s with highs and lows experienced this season by both Josh Matte and Alex Ready.

The NCAA selection show will be held Sunday night at 7:00 PM.

7 thoughts on “Denver Falls Flat in Big EAST Tournament Final, 8-3”

  1. Hat’s off to the Hoyas. Didn’t get to see the game, but frustrating for DU to lose in the BET for the third straight year. Three goals on 37 DU shots and 14 saves by an opposing goalie while DU’s goalies only saved 6 is a recipe for failure.

    That said, it’s been a long time since this DU team has lost, and it will probably cost the home game in the NCAAs.

    Lets hope DU can start a little winning streak again in the coming weeks…


  2. The Hoyas played well, no doubt. However DU also played like dogshit and frankly I’m surprised Tierney didn’t blow a gasket. Play like this again and they’ll undoubtedly lose. Hopefully can be used as a wake up call.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Team looked lost from the start, random shots, no inside movement. Like there was no gameplan for a team they’ve already faced. Very unusual. That kind of performance again ensures a 1 and done in the NCAAs.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Toed, one and done is not what we usually do, be fair. Tierney has taken us to 4-5 final fours and our quarterfinals loss to Loyola was to the best lax team I’ve seen in 10 years. This year one and done seems pretty likely.

    Puck, 37 shots yes, but the quality of shots was miserable. We couldn’t get even fair looks and just shot with no real chance of scoring most of the day. We looked very unprepared and teams have figured us out.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No inside game = fatal. This game reminded me of the Ohio State HOCKEY game. DU was pushed to the outside and no interior offense. The announcers had it right – no physical ‘go to guy’ like DU has had in the past.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. DU might get a home game after all with an RPI of #8. We’ll see, though. If they do get one, great.

    If they don’t, a strong case could be made that they didn’t deserve one.

    Either way, Tierney needs to make some adjustments.

    Liked by 2 people

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