(Photo: Alexis Ramanjulu/WCSN)
The losing streak is finally in the rear-view mirror for the No. 12 Arizona State Sun Devils.
ASU defeated No. 19 San Diego State 10-2 on Sunday at Arizona State’s West campus. It was the first win for the Sun Devils since knocking off the USC Trojans on Feb. 14.
“I think that we were able to play lacrosse based on what they’d gave us, so our kids were smart,” ASU head coach Todd MacRobbie said. “San Diego State was playing a zone (defense) most of the time so our kids took it to advantage and they played their lacrosse.”
Senior midfielder Henry Archie said he thought the energy from the team was a big factor in the Sun Devil win.
“We had a lot of consistent energy,” Archie said. “Today, we just continued with it and allowed it to roll and it was definitely a team effort today. I was happy about it.”
ASU halted the losing streak at four games.
“It means a lot to get that proverbial skunk out of the boat,” junior attackman Rhett Rodgers said. “We were on a streak, we wanted to break it, we broke it, definitively. We’re just going to move on, get back to practicing hard and get ready for UNLV.”
ASU would score on the first possession of the game as Rodgers netted a goal past SDSU senior goalie Troy Carlson. The Sun Devils would take a 2-1 lead after 15 minutes of play.
The game really broke open in the second quarter, when the Sun Devils tallied four goals in the frame.
“They took quality shots and didn’t try to get the next shot,” MacRobbie said.
Two of those goals in the second came from Rodgers, completing his hat trick.
“I think it’s great for Rhett, but I think what benefitted Rhett was the fact that they ran zone,” MacRobbie said. “Rhett’s a big shooter from the outside and, when a team runs zone, they’re willing to give up the outside shot, and to give up the outside shot to Rhett is a dangerous situation.”
Rodgers said changing his stick from Friday night’s game to the SDSU game made a difference.
“I switched up my stick and got a new pocket and it’s been working out nicely,” Rodgers said. “They went zone and that’s kind of my specialty. Our offense was clicking, we played like a team, [and] we were getting consistent shots instead of one-on-one goals.”
After taking a 6-1 lead into halftime, the Sun Devils continued to roll, outscoring the Aztecs 4-1 in the final 30 minutes of action.
Freshman Johnny Perlite started for the Sun Devils between the pipes and had an impressive day, only allowing two goals to the visitors.
“That’s a freshman coming off the bench the other day and then playing a full game against kids that can play and [he] saw some good shots and I think he did really well,” MacRobbie said.
ASU now prepares to host the UNLV Rebels on Saturday, April 9. It will be the final game for the Sun Devils in Glendale during the regular season and the final in front of the home fans for the seniors on the team.
“[It’s] sort of an odd feeling I should say,” Archie said. “It’s been definitely one of the pleasures of my life to be out here on this field with these guys in front of these fans for the past four years of my college career. I want to continue to show them something good and continue to show them a long playoff run because I think the world just saw what ASU can do and now it’s a matter of time for us to sustain it.”