Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 3/19/16
From Press Release
Leading 6-5 in the fourth quarter, the Lehigh men’s lacrosse team scored five of the game’s final six goals to erase any doubt as the Mountain Hawks earned their seventh straight win over Lafayette, 11-6.
Lehigh also defeated its archrival for the 15th time in its last 16 opportunities as the Mountain Hawks improve to 5-2 overall and 3-1 in Patriot League play. Seniors Billy Oppenheimer (Germantown Academy), Reid Weber (Germantown Academy) and freshman Tristan Rai each posted three goals and one assist to lead the offense while freshman Chris Kiernan made 11 saves in his first-career start between the pipes.
“I thought it was a typical Lehigh-Lafayette game,” said Lehigh head coach Kevin Cassese. “It was very fiercely contested on both sides. I thought Lafayette really carried the pace of play from the first whistle.
“They went up 2-0 on us and beat us to a lot of groundballs, which was disappointing to see on our end, but not surprising, because we knew they were going to bring the fight to us. I was proud with the way we answered the bell, in the fourth quarter particularly. Some seniors made some plays and some freshmen stepped up and made some plays. I thought it was a team effort down the stretch to get the lead, and retain it.”
Along with the three hat tricks, juniors Matt Raposo and Casey McAdam added Lehigh’s other goals while senior Alex Eaton dished three assists.
McAdam won 9-of-19 faceoffs in a solid performance, including 4-of-8 in the second half. In addition, his second-quarter man-down goal gave Lehigh a 5-4 lead late in the second quarter. Senior Tripp Telesco led the defense with an impressive effort of three groundballs and four caused turnovers.
Lafayette scored the first two goals, taking a 2-0 lead with 11:32 remaining in the second quarter, but the Mountain Hawks had an answer. Rai got Lehigh on the board with his team-leading 20th goal of the season then Weber, Raposo and Oppenheimer followed as Oppenheimer’s man-up goal gave the Mountain Hawks a 4-2 advantage early in the second quarter.
The Leopards scored at the 5:48 and 3:24 marks to tie the score, but McAdam’s man-down goal gave Lehigh a 5-4 lead at the half.
Lehigh scored the only goal of the third quarter as Oppenheimer tallied his second of the day at the 1:44 mark. Lafayette again pulled within one on an extra man goal early in the fourth, but the Mountain Hawks’ offense came alive with five goals the rest of the way, which included a 4-0 run to end the game. Rai scored two of the final three goals, the last coming with 1:46 remaining, for his fifth-career trick as the Mountain Hawks wrapped up their third Patriot League win of the season to match their number of league wins all of last season.
Final shots were 42-29 in favor of Lehigh while the Leopards held a 32-26 edge in groundballs. Kiernan impressed in goal, making 11 saves, including seven in the second half across Lafayette goaltender Ben Falcone, who finished with seven. Both teams were 1-for-3 on the man advantage.