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The Beautiful Shutout

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It happened!

Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Shutouts aren't college lacrosse's unicorn, but it's pretty damn rare at the Division I level: Since 2007, there have been a total of five shutouts, including Hofstra's complete domination of Manhattan on Tuesday:

  • 2007Virginia 20, VMI 0. Virginia scored seven goals in the first six minutes of the game and held the Keydets to a total of 12 shots -- !!!!!!!!! -- in a total annihilation of VMI. Kip Turner played only 22 minutes for the 'Hoos and had to make a total of one save. The Cavaliers would go on to finish the year with a 12-4 record and a loss to Delaware in the first round of the NCAA Tournament as the event's two-seed while VMI would limp to a 2-12 record and a cumulative 111-176 goal disparity on the year.
  • 2010Albany 0, Stony Brook 15. Albany took 36 shots on Stony Brook with 15 on goal, none getting past Charlie Paar, John Bella, or Nick DiGiacomo. The Seawolves would go on to finish the year with a 13-4 record and a loss to Virginia in the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament as the event's eight-seed while Albany was able to string together a 5-11 record and a trip to the America East Tournament championship (where the Danes would again fall to Stony Brook, 7-11).
  • 2012Manhattan 0, Lehigh 13 and Manhattan 0, Johns Hopkins 11. Manhattan may be the only Division I team in the last 40 years to suffer through two shutouts in the same season. The two shutouts came less than a month apart -- the Jaspers' date with the Mountain Hawks served as Manhattan's season-opener while the Jaspers' trip to Hopkins came in early March just three days after Manhattan slipped past Providence -- and the story of each games was similar -- Manhattan could not muster any offense against two violently efficient defenses. The Jaspers took a total of eight shots against the Hawks while the team was able to trigger 14 against the Jays. That's crazy -- in two games, the Jaspers were able to generate only 22 shots, 12 of which were on goal. Lehigh would finish the season with a 14-3 record and a trip to the NCAA Tournament where the Mountain Hawks would fall to Maryland in the first round. Johns Hopkins finished its 2012 campaign with a 12-4 record and a loss to Maryland in the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament. Manhattan would close 2012 with a 5-9 record and a 1-mark in MAAC play.
  • 2015Manhattan 0, Hofstra 18. The Pride scored more goals on the Jaspers (18) than shots that Manhattan took (13). Let's do this another way: Manhattan had more turnovers (15) than shots taken (13). Or we can do this another way: Manhattan won as many faceoffs in the second half (two) as the team had in shots on goal in the second half (two). Or maybe this way: Sam Llinares had as many goals (six) as Manhattan had shots on goal over the course of the game (six).
Hofstra is now in a unique position: The four teams between 2007 and 2012 that pitched a shutout at some point in the season all made the NCAA Tournament; if the Pride are unable to earn an at-large selection to the field or win THUNDERDOME!'s automatic invitation to The Big Barbeque, Hofstra will stand as an odd outlier in the game's recent history.