No. 2 NYIT rally falls short as Bears fall to No. 1 Mercyhurst 12-9
Jake has 3 goals for NYIT
Erie, Pa. -The No. 2 NYIT Bears rallied from an 8-2 third quarter deficit to pull within one goal on two occasions, but it wasn't enough as the No. 1 Mercyhurst Lakers held on for a 12-9 victory Saturday at Tullio Field in East Coast Conference men's lacrosse action. The Bears lose for the first time this year and fall to 9-1 on the season and 4-1 in the ECC. Mercyhurst improves to 10-1 overall and 4-0 in the ECC.
Mercyhurst jumped out to a 3-0 lead early in the first, getting two scores from Scott Janssen, but the Bears responded with back to back goals from freshmen Matt Sullivan (West Islip, N.Y.) and Austin Carino (Huntington, N.Y.) just :30 seconds apart at 8:01 and 7:31 to pull to within 3-2, but Adam Mulherin added a goal late in the first to give the Lakers a 4-2 lead after one period.
Mercyhurst held NYIT scoreless in the second period as Thon scored early and Janssen added two goals for a 7-2 Laker halftime lead.
Mike Bartlett scored to put the Lakers on top 8-2 early in the third period, but NYIT took over for an extended time, scoring five consecutive goals spanning the third and fourth quarter. After Bartlett's goal, sophomore Matt Messina (Sayville, N.Y.) and graduate student Paul Flowers (London, England) each netted scores. Sophomore Jake Delillo (Yorktown, N.Y.) posted three consecutive goals, one to end the third and two to start the fourth, to close NYIT to within one at 8-7.
With momentum squarely in the Bears favor, Janssen scored his final goal of the game to put the Lakers ahead 9-7. But NYIT sophomore Kevin Hennessy (West Babylon, N.Y.) scored 18 seconds later to cut the deficit to 9-8 with 6:52 remaining.
With time running down, NYIT had to force the action and Mercyhurst made the Bears pay. Bryon Lindner scored his only goal of the game with 3:17 to play and Thon added his final goal 43 seconds later. Messina netted his second goal of the day to bring the Bears within 11-9 with 2:05 left, but Bartlett put the contest away on the final goal of the game with 25 seconds left.
Both teams finished with 30 shots for the contest, but NYIT held a 31-22 ground balls advantage and won 20-of-25 face-offs.
The Bears will wrap up the 2007 schedule at ECC rival Molloy College on Saturday, May 4 at 4 p.m.