LAX Faces Off Against Bellarmine Saturay
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SALT LAKE CITY – The Utah lacrosse team continues to rack up the miles as it heads to Louisville, Ky., this weekend to take on a familiar foe in Bellarmine at 10 a.m. (MT) this Saturday, Feb. 6, inside Owsley B. Frazier Stadium.
SALT LAX CITY FINDS HOME
Utah lacrosse officially has a home starting in 2021-22 after officially accepting an invitation to join the ASUN as an affiliate member on Friday, Feb. 5. The news comes after a realignment between the ASUN and SoCon, which gives home to four current independents in Utah, Cleveland State, Robert Morris and Hampton.
Utah, Cleveland State and Robert Morris will join the ASUN while Hampton joins the SoCon as part of a realignment to have two NCAA Tournament automatic qualifying (AQ) conferences. Air Force and Bellarmine, who are members of the SoCon, will move over to the ASUN while Detroit Mercy moves over from the MAAC to round out the six-member league.
The Southern Conference (SoCon) will retain its men's lacrosse championship and NCAA AQ status by playing with a realigned group of six: Hampton, High Point, Jacksonville, Mercer, Richmond and VMI.
Freshman Tyler Bradbury had a great start to the season, posting five points with three goals while dishing out a pair of assists. The Oak Park, Calif., product connected on 3-of-6 attempts for the Utes while also scooping up a ground ball in the near loss to #5 Denver last Saturday. His first goal came at the 5:13 mark in the third before scoring his second goal just 2:19 minutes later. He then helped Utah mount its charge down 9-6. Bradbury first found Drew Wasserman to bring the Utes within 9-7 before blasting one past the DU keeper to make it 9-8.
NO JEKYLL, JUST HYDE
Jordan Hyde had a great collegiate debut against #5 Denver, rifling in the first two goals of the year for Utah and helped the Utes take an early 3-1 lead at the half. The Bloomfield Hills, Mich., native broke the seal near the end of the first quarter with 3:20 to go before answering Denver's equalizer with his second score at the 10:07 mark in the second frame. The freshman finished with two points, both goals, to go with a pair of ground balls.
JOHNS STEPS UP
Sophomore Zack Johns got the call in the cage for the Utes in its opener and was dialed in. The Henderson, Nev., native made some spectacular saves throughout the game and held #5 Denver to just nine goals before finishing with 16 saves. Those 16 saves are tied for the second-highest total in a single-game as Utah enters its third season as a Division I program. Liam Donnelley owns the single-game record with 17 saves, doing it twice in the inaugural season.
LAST TIME OUT
Utah put the lacrosse world on notice last Saturday when it took a 3-1 lead over #5 Denver at halftime before taking them to the wire before falling 9-8. The Utes battled with the Pioneers in the second-half and weathered the storm for most of the third frame before Denver took a commanding 9-6 lead. However, the Utes did not back down and scored two late goals, starting with Drew Wasserman's laser with just 2:49 to go before Tyler Bradbury laced one in 56 seconds later to bring Utah within 9-8 of Denver before time ran out.
Bradbury led the offensive attack with a hat-trick and two assists for five points while Jordan Hyde recorded a pair of goals. Cole Brams, who scored in the fourth to bring the Utes within 7-6 of Denver, was solid for the Utes and won 12-of-20 faceoff attempts. Meanwhile, Sammy Cambere led Utah with four ground balls to go with his one score.
Utah will get a break next weekend from all the flying before hitting the road once again the following week. However, the Utes won't have to go very far as it heads to Colorado Springs to battle Air Force on Saturday, Feb. 20.