(Photo: Jodi Vosika/ASU Lacrosse)
A perfect 16-0 – that’s the record of the Chapman Panthers compared to a less than perfect 6-5 for the Arizona State University Sun Devils.
The Sun Devils have a whopping 40 players listed on their roster, and Chapman is not far behind with 39. This depth is going to greatly benefit both teams especially this late in the season, when they’re both tired. Based on sheer numbers they have enough manpower to incorporate fresh legs into either of their lineups.
Chapman is top heavy. They rely on two key senior attackmen Steve Koressel, who has 62 points on the season, and Dave Apruzzese, who isn’t trailing by much, totaling 61 points on the year. ASU has a more balanced offensive style with junior attackman Rhett Rodgers, who is the only player for the Sun Devils with over 30 points.
Arizona State has played a tough schedule thus far, matching up against 10 top-25 programs, and Chapman on Friday will make it 11. The Sun Devils have faired well against tough opponents so far, out scoring them in total 100-81.
Chapman has also faced 10 ranked opponents, and they have outscored them by a total of 130-73. However, Chapman has given up no more than 12 goals against a top-25 opponent.
With ASU’s much improved goal defense, Chapman is going to have a hard time scoring against the Sun Devils.
Since ASU turned their season around against San Diego State on April 3, and began starting freshman goalie Johnny Perlite they haven’t given up more than 8 goals.
As for the Sun Devils offense, they have been on a roll as of late. In their last game against USC, ASU had a shut out victory 16-0 in which three players had hat tricks.
In Chapman’s last game, they faced UCSB and won 15-8. Both ASU and Chapman have high scoring, quick offenses. So, this game will boil down to which goalie can out preform the other. And both teams have freshman starting between the pipes with neither having prior SLC tournament experience.
ASU will face Chapman on Friday at La Costa Canyon High School in Carlsbad, California at 4:30 p.m. in the final round of the SLC tournament.
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