Last spring, Loyola's Trae Rodgers suffered what he called "a freak accident" during the preseason, one that nearly forced the premature end to a year spent as a reserve lacrosse goalie.
Rodgers' mother, Marcie, said the injury -- a stress fracture to his spine -- may have been the result of roughhousing with his younger sister, Taylor, and was compounded by a snowboarding accident.
Yesterday, however, the 5-foot-6, 120-pound junior was the backbone of the third-ranked Dons (6-1, 4-1) 11-8 victory over eighth-ranked McDonogh.
Rodgers made six of his 18 saves during man-down situations and assisted on one critical goal. McDonogh (5-3, 3-3) had a 16-4 advantage in faceoffs, led by midfielder Andrew Bond (one goal), but was 0-for-8 during extra-man situations.
Mike Alfone had two goals and an assist, Brian Miller contributed with one goal and two assists and Devon Weatherly two assists for the Dons, who converted their first four goals on six shots en route to an 5-1 first-period lead.