Jakob Phaup and the Orange Shine in 13-11 Upset Win over Virginia
Few superlatives can describe Jakob Phaup’s bounce-back performance at the face-off x this afternoon. Masterful? Dominant? Sublime? Whatever word you choose, it probably encapsulates Phaup’s performance to a tee. The junior won 24 of 27 available draws for the #11 Orange (6-4, 2-3 ACC) in their 13-11 upset victory over #5 Virginia (10-4, 2-4 ACC) in Charlottesville.
Heading into today’s game, Phaup was in the midst of his worst statistical season as a member of the Orange. Phaup’s 52.5% face-off win rate entering today’s game would rank in just the 42nd percentile among qualified face-off specialists, and dead-last in the ACC. That win rate would drop to 45.2% against ACC competition.
There’s something different about going against Petey LaSalla and the ‘Hoos for Phaup. Back in February, Phaup dominated LaSalla, winning 22 of 33 available draws en route to a dominant 20-10 win.
“They used three face-off guys and he was able to dominate against all of them,” said Head Coach John Desko. “He was just focused and on the ball. He made great decisions when he picked it up… I’m glad he came to play today.”
Phaup’s virtually flawless game at the face-off x allowed Syracuse to take full control of the game with their offense. Owen Seebold stepped into the starting lineup for the suspended Chase Scanlan and made an immediate impact.
In his first start of the season, the 6’1” Junior attack absorbed Scanlan’s workload and then some, taking a season-high 10 shots and scoring two goals.
“I’ve always tried to stay prepared,” said attack Owen Seebold. “The team as a whole played with a lot of energy that we haven’t seen these last few games. Me being prepared for this opportunity meshed with the energy. I’m glad I seized the moment.”
It will be hard to replace Scanlan’s production long-term. #22 in Orange scored 24 goals and added nine assists in nine starts this season, and leads the team in goals scored.
Like Phaup, Senior midfielder Jamie Trimboli has struggled mightily in 2021, scoring 11 goals in his prior nine games after scoring 17 goals in just five games the year before.
“Nice that [Trimboli] got those goals,” said Desko. “Nice to know going down the stretch that he’s come alive.”
The Orange are now 6-4 on the season and 2-3 in ACC play. Fittingly, both of their conference wins came against the Cavaliers. Syracuse can maintain its late-season momentum with a win against #2 Notre Dame (6-2, 2-2 ACC) in Notre Dame.
Tune into WAER for Countdown to Face-Off at 11:30, with the opening draw set for 12.