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Syracuse Flexes its Muscle

Coach Desko was able to give his starting unit a rest late in the 4th Quarter
Coach Desko was able to give his starting unit a rest late in the 4th Quarter

Coming off a tough overtime victory over Georgetown on Saturday and playing on only two days rest, the Syracuse Orange showed why they are the number one team in the country.

The Orange took down the number 14 ranked Great Danes of Albany last night 18-13 and showed a tremendous amount of offensive depth.  13 players recorded a point for the Orange and 11 players scored for Coach Desko.  Attackmen Tim Desko and Tom Palasek combined for eight goals and 10 points.

“It makes you more difficult to scout and means everybody is learning the offense,” Desko said. “I was happy with that part.”

-Coach John Desko on his offense which saw 11 different people score for the Orange

Coming off strong victory over Ohio State this weekend, Scott Marr’s squad looked like a team on the brink of finally showing the country their abilities.  Before beating the Buckeyes, Albany took down Deleware and Umass in back to back weeks.  Strong goalie play by freshman Edmund Cathers and a balanced offense had given the Great Danes confidence going into last nights game.

Unfortunetly for the Danes, they entire first midfield line sat out due to injuries.

For yet another week, SU’s John Lade held the opposing team’s top attackman to only two goals (one of which came when the reserves were in).  The defense forced 19 Albany turnovers, including causing the Danes to fail seven times on their clear attempts. 

Desko’s four goals now put him tied for fourth in the country with 15, three more than his entire total in 2010.  Palasek got the monkey off his back and scored his first goal as a member of the Orange.  He went on to score three more goals and adding an assist. 

Syracuse also went 50 percent on the man up, something that had been a bit of a weak spot for the Orange in the previous four games.

I keep going back to a point I made when Palasek transferred.  Many people didn’t know how this would affect the team.  Would it be a positive or a negative?  Would it help the attack unit or hurt it?

I think we are all now seeing it is only helping not only the attack but the entire team.  Palasek is a smart player.  In the previous four games, he was just fine with running on the second midfield line and working his way into a rotation on the attack unit.

Now this Syracuse attack looks like it did in 2009, where the trio of Kenny Nims, Stephen Keogh and Chris Daniello would rotate with Desko and soon rotate with Cody Jamieson.  If you can put your ego’s aside and make that work, it shows how deep this offense unit can be and this is story line to look for the rest of the season.

As Jamieson’s emergence was near in’09, Daniello worked his butt off and became the player and leader he was in 2010 (leading the team in points with 52).  This is what I expected to happen out of the entire 2011 attack unit, especially a kid like Desko.  Not only has Palasek’s arrival pushed Desko to become the player he is in ’11, but it has made Palasek realize his role on this team and show what he can add to the number one team in the country.

The Orange may have beat a banged up team, but they beat the Great Danes in every category.  Faceoffs, (Jeremy Thompson went 11-15), groundballs, shots, and clears (two of which led to goals by Joel White and Tim Harder, both defensive midfielders).