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St. John’s Lax drops conference opener to Providence

The Friars get their first-ever win over the Red Storm.

The focus of the Big East Conference was on Villanova's amazing run to a national championship in men's basketball, and rightly so. But the Big East's spring sports were also in action, and this weekend brought the beginning of conference play in lacrosse, with all teams hitting the fields.

St. John's traveled up to Providence to play the Friars and  fell by the score of 15-10 on a rainy Saturday afternoon.

The loss is the fifth straight for the Johnnies, and also the first time in history that they lost to Providence. They were 15-0 all-time against the Friars before Saturday's loss.

St. John's (1-9, 0-1 Big East) got off to a very good start, jumping out to a 3-0 lead with goals from Jackson O'Leary, James Bonanno, and Jason Debenedictis. Providence then went on a 6-2 run, which included four goals from Senior Will Mazzone, to take a 6-5 lead into the half.

In the second half, Providence (7-3, 1-0 Big East) took control of the game. Mazzone added two more goals to bring his season total to 27. The Red Storm never got the deficit to less than five in the fourth quarter, ultimately losing by five.

A bright spot for the Johnnies was freshman Colin Duffy. In his first career start in the St. John's uniform, he tallied four goals and added an assist for a career-high five points. His performance earned him a spot on the Big East Weekly Honor Roll. Redshirt Senior James Bonanno also added two goals and two assists for the Red Storm. For the Friars, Mazzone had six goals and two assists and Keenan Assaraf had three goals as well.

Going into the game, there was some confusion about who the main goalie is for St. John's and this game gave us no answers to that question. Junior Joseph Danaher played the entire first half and stopped nine out of 15 shots. RS Freshman Michael O'Keefe started the second half and only allowed three goals and had seven saves. Head Coach Jason Miller then pulled him and put in senior Harry Burke with about 11 minutes left in the game. He stopped four out of the six shots he faced.

The next game for St. John's is on Saturday, April 9th, at noon when the host the Marquette Golden Eagles. The game will be on shown on ESPN3.

Around the Big East

#4 Denver 17, Georgetown 4

Denver is the other National Champion that resides in the Big East Conference and they showed it. The Pioneers absolutely dominated Georgetown in D.C. They bolted out to a 5-0 lead and never looked back. Denver will face a tough test against Villanova in their next match but should be the overwhelming favorite to repeat as conference champions.

Marquette 11, #5 Villanova 3

The Golden Eagles pulled off the upset pretty easily against Villanova on Saturday. It is quite possible that the Wildcat players were like the rest of the student body and wanted to get to Saturday night as fast as possible.