WOOSTER, Ohio – The College of Wooster men's lacrosse team stayed in the ballpark for the first period, while in the end, the Fighting Scots couldn't keep pace with No. 13 Denison University's firepower in a 23-9 setback on Wednesday evening at John P. Papp Stadium.
Wooster (5-9, 3-2 North Coast Athletic Conference) was within two of NCAC co-leading Denison (11-2, 5-0 NCAC) after one period of play, and key to that was first-year Joe Citera's play on faceoffs. Citera, who tallied three groundballs in the period, won 5-of-9 over the opening 15 minutes.
Wednesday's contest featured a showcase of two of this week's United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association Team of the Week honorees in sophomore Shaun Peirce and Denison's Peter Pittroff, and neither disappointed. Peirce found the back of the net a team-high five times on the night, and now has 18 goals over his last three games. In fact, by night's end, Peirce upped his season haul to 43 – the seventh-most in program history – and coupled with alumnus Sam Kuhn's 41 last year, Wooster's now has a 40-goal scorer in back-to-back seasons for the first time since a three-year stretch from 1990-92, during which five Scots were at or past the 40-goal mark.
Pittroff on the other hand, dished out nine assists on the night, with his total tying for the fourth-most within Div. III this spring. The Big Red's junior attacker found his groove in the third period with three straight helpers, the final of which went to Brooks Davy, who distanced himself from all players with a game-high eight scores.
Citera's 14 faceoff wins and six groundballs represented Wooster's other big highlight of the night. The rookie upped his season groundball haul to 73, the fifth-most on the program's single-season chart.
Waxter's four goals backed up the big nights logged by Davy and Pittroff.
Wooster did have its fair share of chances, as the Scots logged 31 shots on the night, but the Big Red did lead that stat with 43, which was identical to the number of groundballs scooped up by Denison.
Richie Bartozzi, Matt Bomes, and Steven Villacorta logged six groundballs apiece for the Big Red.
Next, Wooster's at Oberlin College (4-9, 1-5 NCAC) for a 4 p.m. contest on Saturday.