Greg Wall

#12/12 UAlbany Men’s Lacrosse Edged in Final Seconds at #6/6 Syracuse 10-9

UAlbany Sports Information   02-18-2017

SYRACUSE, N.Y. – In an absolute thriller in the Carrier Dome, the #12/12 UAlbany men’s lacrosse team fell in its season opener to #6/6 Syracuse 10-9 after the game-winner was scored with 1.9 seconds left to play.

UAlbany (0-1), up three at the half to Syracuse (2-0), was down 7-6 going into the final quarter.  Goals by Sean Eccles and Bennett Drake pushed UAlbany ahead, then Syracuse went back up.  Eccles again tied it up with 3:43 left, but a Nick Mariano goal in the closing seconds gave Syracuse the win.

“It was a heck of a game, I am really proud of our team and our effort today,” said UAlbany head coach Scott Marr. “You can’t ask for a better opening game with the heart that we showed.”

“We are losing are trainer, Anthony Benyarko, who is taking a job at the University of Maryland,” added Marr. “I can’t tell you how much he has meant for our program; he has been our trainer for 11 years, and it is sad to see him go, I know our guys appreciated him and he is a wonderful human being.”

In his first-ever start between the pipes, JD Colarusso had 13 saves, including five in the first quarter, and four ground balls.  Eli Lasda forced three turnovers on the defense and the ride, plus scored a goal.

Eccles finished with two goals and an assist while Drake had two goals.  Connor Fields earned four assists on the day.

For Syracuse, Sergio Salcido had two goals and two assists while Brendan Bomberry had a goal and three assists.  Evan Molloy picked up the win with nine saves in goal.

Colarusso got a shot on him three minutes in, knocking it down with his shoulder.  UAlbany sprinted down as Kyle McClancy took it across and buried a shot into the top right corner.  Colarusso saved a third chance shot on SU’s next possession at the shoulder, leading to a UAlbany clear.  After a hard shot by Eccles drew iron, Jack Burgmaster stutter stepped around his defender and scored the line drive shot inside the left post for a 2-0 UAlbany lead with 8:16 in the 1st.

Syracuse got a goal back quickly after a clear on a catch and shoot by Tyson Bomberry.  Colarusso kept stopping Syracuse shots high and low, the fifth save leading to a clear.  In the closing seconds of the first quarter, Fields passed across the fan to Lasda, who threw a shot inside the right post from 10 meters out, giving UAlbany a 3-1 lead after one quarter.

Troy Reh quickly scored in the start of the second, grabbing the faceoff, racing to the cage and scoring on a high-low shot.  After getting a turnover the other way, UAlbany drew a man-up situation.  Fields found Drake next to the goal circle for the catch and shoot goal.  Less than a minute later, Eccles found Jakob Patterson for a ground ball shot and score from the lefty to make it 6-1 UAlbany with 10:40 left in the 2nd.

Syracuse added a pair of quick goals, one on man-up and the other on a run to the cage from Pat Carlin.  UAlbany held off Syracuse for the rest of the half, including Stone Sims holding off a couple of Orange cutters towards the cage.  UAlbany went into the locker room leading 6-3.

UAlbany picked up an early man-up chance shortly into the third quarter, ending with a shot by Justin Reh hitting the post.  Syracuse got a goal back from Matt Lane, with Colarusso saving the next pair of shots on goal, including one just after a man-down situation, then assisting on the ride by grabbing a pass well in front of the goal circle.

Late in the 3rd, Syracuse scored three goals in a span of 85 seconds, capped by defender Austin Fusco scoring on a fast break after a won faceoff.  Syracuse had a 7-6 lead after three quarters.

Colarusso saved another couple of shots to begin the fourth quarter, including a high one from Nick Mariano.  UAlbany broke its drought just under five minutes into the 4th, as Eccles lasered a shot from the hip into the top right corner.  Next possession, started by a Colarusso save again, led to Patterson drawing a double team to free Drake for the shot and score, putting UAlbany ahead 8-7 with 7:35 to play.

Syracuse got the lead back with two goals in a row from Salcido, going up 9-8 with 4:14 in the 4th.  UAlbany struck back quickly after a timeout as Eccles threw another rocket into the game, tying the game at 9-9 with 3:43 left.

UAlbany got the ball back in the closing minute, having a shot clock called on them.  Adam Osika sent a shot high, then another chance was blocked.  Syracuse cleared with 1:19 left.  UAlbany held against two high shots, but a third chance by Mariano was a goal with 1.6 seconds left, giving Syracuse the win 10-9.

UAlbany will play next Saturday, February 25th in Philadelphia against Drexel at 1 p.m.

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