Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 4/2/16
From Press Release
The Lehigh men’s lacrosse team jumped out to a 5-2 halftime lead and withstood a third-quarter Boston University surge as senior Chris Appell scored the go-ahead goal with 2:28 remaining to give the Mountain Hawks a thrilling 8-7 win over the No. 20 Terriers on a rainy Saturday afternoon. With the win, Lehigh improves to 6-4 overall and 4-2 in Patriot League play while the Terriers fall to 8-3 and 3-2 in the league.
“Today shows the courage our players have and the belief our players have in each other,” said Lehigh head coach Kevin Cassese. “That’s what it comes down to. We had some guys who were playing with significant injuries today, guys who stepped up and said you know what, it’s go time; we’ve got to get out there and play. It’s been a tough go the last few games because we haven’t really been whole. We didn’t get to practice whole either this week.”
Senior Reid Weber (Germantown Academy) led the offense with three goals for his 17th-career hat trick while five others scored one goal apiece. Junior Ian Strain (Episcopal Academy) also dished two assists. The defense was stellar for most of the afternoon, holding the Terriers to just a single goal in the first, second and fourth quarters. Senior Tripp Telesco had three groundballs and three caused turnovers while senior midfielder Ray Mastroianni had four groundballs and two caused turnovers. Senior Casey Eidenshink (La Salle) had three groundballs and a caused turnover in a return from injury.
“It wasn’t pretty by any stretch,” said Cassese. “In fact, it was ridiculously ugly. For us, at Lehigh, sometimes that’s the way we have to win and we’re fine with that.”
The Terriers opened the game with a goal just under four minutes into the game, but Lehigh answered with the next three goals, from freshman Tristan Rai, along with seniors Alex Eaton and Billy Oppenheimer, to take a 3-1 lead after one quarter of play.
Boston University scored just over five minutes into the second quarter, but the Mountain Hawks responded with goals from Weber and a score from sophomore John Mehok (Bishop Shanahan) with just 13 seconds on the clock, to take a 5-2 lead at the half.
The Terriers came out of halftime on fire, scoring just 16 seconds into the stanza, the first of four straight goals to take a 6-5 lead. However, Weber scored a crucial goal with just six seconds left in the third quarter then again less than two minutes into the fourth, to give Lehigh a 7-6 advantage. Boston University evened the score, but Appell scored his first goal of the season in transition with just 2:28 remaining. Lehigh held off Boston University over the final minutes to wrap up the thrilling 8-7 victory.
Ryan Hilburn (Malvern Prep) had two goals and an assist and Greg Wozniak (Holy Ghost Prep) led the BU defense with two groundballs and three caused turnovers.
Final shots were 30-19 in favor of the Terriers while Boston University held a 30-26 edge in groundballs and the Terriers won 14-of-19 faceoffs. Sophomore Matt Ernst returned from injury and won 5-of-16 faceoffs, including 2-of-4 in the fourth quarter. Freshman Chris Kiernan was strong in goal, making nine saves across Christian Carson-Banister, who made five.
“I thought our defense was spectacular today,” said Cassese. “They did a great job. They had a lull in the third quarter, but over the other three quarters, I thought they were spectacular and I thought that was the difference in the game.”