Photos/Recap: Irish Edge No. 4 Syracuse to Win the ACC Title

Randy Staats (Six Nations, Ontario, Canada) led the Orange with five goals against the Irish and joined Rice on the all-tournament team. Nicky Galasso (West Islip, N.Y.) and Derek Maltz (Ashburn, Va.) added two goals and one assist apiece.

Notre Dame opened up a 3-1 lead six minutes into the game, but five straight goals gave the Orange a 6-3 advantage early in the second quarter. Staats scored back-to-back goals during the run, including a nifty one-handed tally with 13:34 to play in the first half.

Conor Doyle stopped the Orange surge, and the Irish netted four of the last five goals in the second quarter to tie the game 7-7 at the half.

In the third quarter, Notre Dame took control, outscoring the Orange 7-2 in the period. After Dylan Donahue (Camillus, N.Y.) finished a Rice pass 34 seconds into frame to open the second-half scoring, Notre Dame tallied six goals in a row to claim an 13-8 advantage with 1:56 left in the period. Kavanagh and Jim Marlatt keyed the run with two goals apiece.

Staats briefly halted Notre Dame's momentum by converting a Maltz feed, but Kavanagth struck again with 12 seconds remaining in the period to make the score 13-9 heading into the last 15 minutes.

The two sides exchanged goals during the first six minutes of final period, with Jack Near's unassisted score giving the Irish a 15-10 advantage with 9:45 to go in regulation.

Following Near's goal, it was all Syracuse. The Orange reeled off four goals, including three in the span of 3:23. Rice had two assists in the spurt and Scot Loy's (Toledo, Ohio) goal with 2:02 remaining closed the gap to 15-14.

Syracuse had two chances to tie the game in the final minute, but Billy Ward's (Baldwinsville, N.Y.) shot with 41 seconds to play hit the post and Notre Dame goalie Conor Kelly made a game-saving save on Rice with two seconds to deny the Orange a fifth consecutive conference championship.

Junior Bobby Wardwell (Clifton Park, N.Y.) received his first start of the year in goal. Wardwell made four saves in three quarters of work. He was replaced by Dominic Lamolinara (Arnold, Md.) who made two saves in the fourth quarter, including one on Westy Hopkins with just over a minute left that gave the Orange a chance down the stretch.

Syracuse dominated the final stats. The Orange held the advantage in shots (43-34), ground balls (44-36) and faceoffs (21-12). SU was also a perfect 15 for 15 in the clearing game.

Kavanagh paced the Irish with four goals and two assists to earn tournament MVP honors. Doyle contributed five points (two goals three assists) and Marlatt added four (three goals, one assist). Kelly finished with eight saves.

Much like the regular-season meeting, Chris Daddio (Purcellville, N.Y.) once again had his way with the Irish faceoff specialists. Daddio won 21 of 33 (.636) draws and picked up seven ground balls. It was Daddio's seventh career game with at least 15 faceoff wins and his fifth this season.

Syracuse closes the regular season Saturday, May 3 against Colgate at the Carrier Dome. Faceoff is slated for 4:00 p.m. on Time Warner Cable SportsChannel.

Game Notes: In addition to Rice and Staats, Donahue and Brandon Mullins (Coppell, Texas) were also named to the all-tournament team ... Maltz eclipsed the 100-point mark with his two-goal, one-assist performance. Maltz has 101 points (77 goals, 24 assists) in 58 career games ... The loss ended SU's six –game winning streak was the team's defeat in first in conference tournament play. The Orange is 5-1 in its three league tournament appearances ... Peter Macartney (Evergreen, Colo.) tied his career high with six ground balls ... All three ACC Tournament games were decided by one goal and each time the regular-season winner lost the rematch.

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