Jake Froccaro didn't know he was in for anything unique - anything history making - before he stepped onto the Reese Stadium turf Saturday for Princeton's game against Yale.
"No, not at all," Froccaro said. "Yale's a very strong Ivy League opponent, and I was just hoping to contribute as much as I could to help my team win a game. Sometimes you are shooting the ball well and you start playing with a little more confidence. I was fortunate enough to have success shooting. I just grew more and more confident as the game went on."
Whether he knew it or not before the game began, Froccaro would have one of the greatest individual performances in the history of Ivy League lacrosse, and in Division I lacrosse, for that matter.
Froccaro, a sophomore midfielder who was the Ivy Rookie of the Year last year, scored 10 goals in Princeton's 16-15 loss to the Bulldogs. Among other things, it earned Froccaro Ivy League Player of the Week honors.
It was a performance that has rarely been matched in lacrosse history.
For starters, Froccaro's previous career high was three goals, which he had done four times, most recently in Princeton's previous game, against Villanova Tuesday night. Against Yale he eclipsed that by more than three times over, beating it in the first half and then again in the second half. Froccaro scored one goal in the first quarter and five in the second, giving him six at the half, and then scored two more in the third and fourth quarters, giving him four in the second half and 10 for the game.
The 10-goal outburst tied a 63-year-old Princeton single-game record, set back in 1951, when William Griffith also scored 10 goals, against Rutgers.
It was also the fifth time since the formation of the Ivy League in 1956 that a player had reached double figures and the first time a player had done so in an Ivy vs. Ivy game. The other four to reach double figures were current Harvard Director of Athletics Bob Scalise, who scored 11 for Brown against UConn in 1971; Oliver Marti of Brown, who scored 11 against New Hampshire in 1993; Jon Reese of Yale, who scored 10 against Army in 1990; and Chris Danler of Cornell, who scored 10 against Army in 1995.
Froccaro became the first Division I player to score at least 10 goals in a game since Stony Brook's Jordan McBride did so against Delaware in 2008.
McBride and Froccaro are the only two players in the last 15 years to reach double figures in a Division I game. Froccaro is now one of 15 players to score at least 10 goals in a Division I game since 1971. Of those 14 games, only seven - including Froccaro's - came against teams that are currently playing Division I lacrosse.
Froccaro scored his 10 goals on 18 shots. At one point he scored five straight goals, taking Princeton from down 6-3 in the second quarter to up 8-6 in the third.