After suffering a heartbreaking one goal defeat last weekend in a top ten battle against Johns Hopkins, the #9 Rutgers men’s lacrosse team bounced back in a big way on Sunday. They were dominate on both ends and ambushed #17 Michigan (7-4; 0-2) by jumping out to a commanding 12-0 lead, holding the visitors scoreless all the way into the second half. Their largest lead was 16-3 in the fourth quarter, after Kieran Mullins completed a tremendous performance in scoring 8 goals on the day. It was the second consecutive time he produced that many scores against UM, equaling his output versus them last season. While Michigan scored the final 5 goals in the game, Rutgers still won easily, securing an impressive 16-8 victory, their first Big Ten win of the season.
Mullins equaled the scoring output of the entire Wolverines squad and produced the 8 goals on just 11 shots. He added one assist and was backed by senior Connor Vercruysse, who scored a career high 4 goals and had one assist, Big Ten points leader Jules Heningburg scored 1 goal and dished out 5 assists, while Christian Mazzone added two goals. Goalie Max Edelmann made 14 saves on the afternoon.
Here are several highlights from the contest, which aired live on ESPNU.
A gritty & aggressive @bigten matchup has @RUmlax leading @UMichLacrosse 2-0 after the first quarter. Mullins, Gallagher each with 1G. #NCAAMLAX pic.twitter.com/TMlu2Xx4ne— US Lacrosse Magazine (@USLacrosseMag) April 8, 2018
Just a clinic on transition offense for @RUmlax so far today pic.twitter.com/DEzagT71X7— Dan Aburn (@Dan_Aburn) April 8, 2018
Diving, no look, near-pipe backhand? @RUmlax is feeling it - they lead 8-0 at the half. pic.twitter.com/8MM8TXGFUF— Inside Lacrosse (@Inside_Lacrosse) April 8, 2018
"This is just too easy now for the Knights." @RUmlax keeps cruising, now leading @UMichLacrosse 12-0 with 12:04 left in the third quarter. #NCAAMLAX pic.twitter.com/Hv0ZLqplAf— US Lacrosse Magazine (@USLacrosseMag) April 8, 2018
Wow. @RUmlax's Jules Heningburg's got moves. @NCAALAX @Tewaaraton pic.twitter.com/hRCmFGF3re— US Lacrosse Magazine (@USLacrosseMag) April 8, 2018
It was Senior Day for the program and they celebrated in style by making a statement with such a complete performance in front of a home crowd of over 3,000 fans at High Point Solutions Stadium.
Great day honoring this special class of 14 @RutgersU seniors! #RUMLax Senior Day Photo Gallery: https://t.co/EHPdSbIAqW pic.twitter.com/An7I2Ovtfz— Rutgers Men's LAX (@RUmlax) April 8, 2018
#9 Rutgers is now 8-3 on the season and 1-1 in conference play. They need to win at least two of their final three Big Ten regular season games to likely make the conference tournament and keep their NCAA Tournament hopes alive. Their next game will be another top ten matchup, as the Scarlet Knights will travel south to take on #2 Maryland (8-1; 1-0) next Sunday at 7 p.m. The contest will be aired live on the Big Ten Network. After that, Rutgers will face #15 Penn State (7-3; 1-0) at home and finish the regular season at Ohio State (5-6; 0-2).