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Wardwell solidifies himself as starter in net through 3 games with improved save percentage

first_img Published on February 24, 2015 at 12:11 am Contact Connor: [email protected] | @connorgrossman After a season of splitting much of his time in goal last season with senior Dominic Lamolinara, Bobby Wardwell has spent nearly every minute of the 2015 season in front of the net. Wardwell’s biggest opposition for time in the crease was Warren Hill, a junior transfer from Onondaga Community College, but Hill only saw 23 minutes in No. 3 Syracuse’s (3-0) 21-7 blowout victory over Siena in the season-opener.Since then Wardwell has played 116:53 of the last 120 minutes of game action. The 6-foot senior goalie allowed nine goals on 11 saves against No. 14 Army on Sunday night, and has 26 saves on the season.With his team’s first 3-0 start in four years, head coach John Desko doesn’t see a reason not to stick with the hot hand.“I think Bob’s in complete control of the defense and (he’s) playing very well,” Desko said. “I think he played well last year and we were always getting a very solid performance out of him.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textHe’s got a 57.8 save percentage to boast through three games — compared to 51.3 percent last season — and proven himself capable of limiting the damage against offenses with multiple big scoring threats. Wardwell’s biggest nemesis on the Black Knights was attack John Glesener, who was able to convert on four of his 11 shots.Wardwell said he tried to prepare for Glesener by taking lots of shots during practice from bigger outside shooters. Before Glesener’s four-goal performance, Wardwell hadn’t allowed more than three goals to any player this year. Thanks to Ben Williams’ 21-for-25 outing at the X for SU, Wardwell and the defense was given ample time to get a read on what Army’s offense was bringing at them.“I think our offense is doing a great job in keeping possession and getting a lot of goals,” Wardwell said. “That just kind of makes it easier to relax on defense knowing they’re going to be able to put the ball in the back of the net.”With SU clinging to a two-goal lead midway through the fourth quarter, the SU keeper sprinted to catch up to an errant pass that would’ve been rewarded to Army had it gone out of bounds.With the attack closing in on him in the corner, Wardwell was able to shovel the ball off to defender Sean Young to help clear it. Syracuse will face some of the country’s best offenses, and it appears that the senior will be solely tasked as the last line of defense. Despite Desko hinting before the season he might use multiple goalies, Wardwell’s play has overshadowed that thought.“Very few goals going in that shouldn’t go in,” Desko said. “And now we’re starting to get some stops on shots that should go in, I think you saw that last week and tonight. “He’s been very confident in leading the defense and we feel very good about that.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more