Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 2/20/16
From Press Release
No. 20/19 Penn State men’s lacrosse (3-0) held off No. 18/15 Cornell (0-1) for a thrilling 8-7 victory on the road at Schoellkopf Field Saturday afternoon.
“Coming into this game we knew it was going to be more of a six-on-six, – more of a slugfest so to speak,” head coach Jeff Tambroni said. “We knew it was going to be more make-it take-it for them and we knew we were going to have to start more of our possessions in the defensive end and get a stop and get it back in the offensive end.”
Six Nittany Lions tallied at least one goal in the win, led by two goals apiece from senior TJ Sanders and redshirt junior Matt Florence. Sophomore Ryan Keenan, senior James Chakey (Haverford School), freshman Kevin Fox and junior Mike Sutton (St. Augustine Prep) rounded out the scoring effort with once goal apiece.
Freshman Grant Ament (Haverford School) led the team with two assists, while junior Nick Aponte, Sanders and Keenan added one each. Four Nittany Lions picked up at least two groundballs, led by three from sophomore goalie Will Schreiner (Avon Grove). Senior Peter Triolo, freshman Kevin Fox, and Sutton all had two each. Chakey also led the team with a pair of caused turnovers.
Schreiner totaled seven saves, registering three in the fourth quarter alone.
Cornell jumped out to a fast start, scoring two quick goals, including one just five seconds of the game to take over an early lead.
Sutton responded for the Nittany Lions with an unassisted goal to put Penn State on the board, 2-1. Florence followed with his first goal of the afternoon off an assist from Ament to tie the score with 1:30 remaining in the first quarter.
Penn State and Cornell kept it close in the second quarter until the Big Ren broke open the tied score with a goal to pull ahead 3-2 as time expired in the first half.
The Nittany Lions came out of the intermission firing, using a 5-0 scoring streak to take control. Chakey opened the stretch, followed by back-to-back goals from Sanders to give Penn State a two-point lead, 5-3. Fox and Keenan followed with a pair of goals to widen the advantage to four, 7-3 with 2:41 left in the third quarter.
The Big Red came storming back with four consecutive goals, scoring the last two 38 seconds apart to knot the score, 7-7 with 5:13 left in the game. Florence came through in the clutch with his second goal of the afternoon to send the Nittany Lions ahead for good, 8-7.
Next up, Penn State returns home from the road to host RV/20 Villanova Saturday, Feb. 27 at 1 p.m.
NOTES: The Nittany Lions earned their first win over a ranked opponent this season, improving to 1-0 on the year against ranked teams … Penn State also improves to 1-0 in road games this year … The Nittany Lion victory evens the all-time series between Penn State and Cornell to 20-20 … Both Matt Florence and TJ Sanders have scored at least two goals in all three games this season … Penn State is 3-0 on the year for the first time since opening the 2002 season with three straight wins.