He looked that way with good reason as the Dolphins entered the Senior Day contest down seven players who normally see plenty of action and he wasn’t sure what to expect.
The Dolphins (6-7, 3-3) showed him some pull together as Quint Miller scored three times and had an assist and goal keeper Pete DeLuca had 10 saves to win a trip to the MAAC tournament beginning in two weeks. The win also tied the school record for wins in a season for the three-year old program.
JU was playing without freshman ace Ari Waffle, the team's leading goal scorer with 23, who has missed the last two games with illness, and six other players suspended this week for violating team rules.
“I know this win is good and I’m really proud of our young men and the way they came together,’’ Van Arsdale said as his eyes searched the grown grasping for words to match the situation. “The way they handled some self-inflicted adversity and came out focused all week and got job done. They really pulled together. I’m very, very proud of them.’’
The Dolphins came out hot early and took a 3-0 first quarter lead when David Goldman, who had two goals, Rob Wertz and Dan Jones all scored.
Goldman and Miller, twice, scored in the second quarter, which was interrupted 51 minutes by a lightning delay, for a 6-3 halftime lead. Much of the early success was brought on by junior middie Dan McNulty who won eight to f 10 first half face-offs for the Dolphins.
A four-goal outburst in the third quarter virtually iced the game as Wertz, Jimmy Trentini, Jones and senior DJ Zymkowitz, playing his last home game, found the net.
The Dolphins held the Jaspers (5-8, 1-4) scoreless in the fourth as DeLuca and backup Alex DiScala combined for six saves and Miller and Max Gurowski ended the scoring. DiScala and Gurowski also were playing their final home game.
“DeLuca came up big and Danny McNulty on the face-offs was a key for us earl to get us going and the other guys pulled together,’’ Van Arsdale said. “And, Tyler Black was a man possessed. I thought he was the best player on the field today. He was everywhere and just a dominant force which is hard to do as a long stick middie.’’ Black had four ground balls and a caused turnover.
Now, the Dolphins will prepare for the tournament in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., most likely against league-leading Siena.
“Going to the MAAC championship and still being alive in that and still having a chance,’’ Van Arsdale said, “who knows, you go and win that and you’re playing in the NCAA tournament. There are not a lot of teams coming down in the next two weeks saying the still have an avenue to get there and we’re one of them.’’
He’s convinced the team deserves it after the season it has had.
“They work hard and they’ve gone through a lot this year and a lot of change,’’ he said. “And they are really starting to get it and I am really happy for them that they have some of that success.’’