The men’s lacrosse team showed why it is considered the best club lacrosse team in the country on as it easily defeated Loyola Marymount 13-4 on Saturday.
The defending national champion Gauchos (6-0 overall) scored nine unanswered goals in the second and third quarters to win their fourth consecutive road game and remain undefeated on the year. With the loss, LMU dropped to 4-2 on the year.
“It’s good to come out and go 6-0,” senior captain Will Patton said. “We’re building on each game and we’re going to get better as the season goes on.”
Santa Barbara led 2-1 at the end of the first quarter, but five consecutive goals gave the Gauchos a comfortable lead at halftime. UCSB came out firing again in the second half, scoring four quick goals to put the game away for good. UCSB scored on 13 of its 30 shots, while LMU was only able to convert four of its 20 shots.
Freshman Luke Shaw led UCSB with four goals and two assists, and senior Eric Johnson added two goals and two assists of his own. Senior captain Stefan Isaksen also scored two goals and Patton scored his team-leading 12th goal of the season. Eight different players scored overall for the Gauchos.
“Guys who usually don’t play that much got a chance to play and they all played really well,” Patton said. “We got a chance to show off our depth.”
UCSB also displayed its goaltending depth as four different goalies got playing time. All-American senior Ryan Brittain blocked seven of the eight shots he faced, and sophomore Mike Sheridan blocked all three of the shots that he faced. Freshman Clay Sheffler had six saves and senior Mike Wood blocked the only shot he saw.
“Ryan is solid pretty much every game and Sheridan had some big saves. It was nice to see Sheridan play well, since Ryan is a senior,” Patton said. “They all played really well. All our goalies would probably start for other teams in our league.”
The Gauchos have won every game they’ve played by at least seven goals, and have yet to be significantly tested. That should, however, change in the coming weeks. Stanford and USC will visit UCSB on Saturday and Sunday, respectively, with both games starting at 1 p.m. On March 12, UCSB will travel to the Home Depot Center and take on Colorado, which it defeated 8-7 in last year’s National Championship game.