Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 3/13/15
From Press Release
Freshman Matt Johnson scored two clutch goals and sophomore Cole Fox turned away 15 shots to lead the visiting Swarthmore College men’s lacrosse team to a 13-12 triumph over Whittier on Friday at Memorial Stadium in Whittier, CA. The Garnet extended their winning streak to four straight games with the victory.
The game came down to the wire, as Whittier (2-1) erased a five-goal deficit in the fourth quarter by scoring four straight to pull within one down the stretch. Trailing 12-11 with under a minute left, Matt Symes attempted to net his fourth goal of the quarter by unleashing a shot at Fox. The sophomore, however, came up with arguably the biggest save of his career with just under a minute let and Johnson scored at the other end just 13 seconds later to make it a two-goal game.
Despite the setback, Whittier was able to find the back of the net with eight seconds left and won the ensuing faceoff to give itself an opportunity to score and force overtime. A clean pass was made by Aaron Self for what would have been a good look against Fox, but his receiver missed the ball to allow the Garnet to escape with their fourth straight win.
Whittier is coached by Brian Kelly, a Downingtown High graduate.
After a quiet first quarter offensively, Swathmore outscored the hosts 7-2 in the second frame to take control. Junior Will Black and senior Ian Lukaszewicz each found the back of the net twice to spear the offense and give the Garnet an 8-3 advantage at the recess.
The teams played an even third quarter and exchanged goals to start the fourth, which included another Lukaszewicz laser to the back of the net off a feed from Stephen Ducey to make it 11-6 with 12:07 left. But Whittier stormed back with five straight unassisted goals over a span of 6:43, setting up the wild and exciting finish. Fox ended up making three clutch saves down the stretch, as the Garnet won for the fourth straight time since recording consecutive victories over Randolph-Macon, the United States Merchant Marine Academy, St. Mary’s and New England College between March 1 and 15 during the 2008 campaign.
Whittier narrowly outshot Swarthmore 38-35 and had a slight 15-14 advantage on faceoffs. Ground balls were even at 31 apiece, and both teams recorded a man-up goal. Fox made 15 saves to improve his record to a perfect 3-0 this season for Swarthmore, while Whittier’s Alex Cramer made six stops and was charged with the loss before being replaced in the third quarter by Tyler Coleman.
Swarthmore (4-1) will look to win its fifth straight game when it opens its Centennial Conference slate at home against Ursinus on Saturday, March 21 at 3:00 p.m.