GENEVA, N.Y. – The top-seeded University of Denver men’s lacrosse team fell 11-10 in the final seconds of the Eastern College Athletic Conference Championship game at Boswell Field, hosted by Hobart College, on Saturday evening in Geneva, N.Y. The loss drops the Pioneers to 12-4 on the season, while Ohio State improves to 12-3 overall.
Senior Eric Law (Centennial, Colo.) and sophomore Wesley Berg (Coquitlam, B.C.) led the Pioneers with three points each, off two goals and an assist. Senior Chase Carraro (Louisville, Ky.) finished with a season-high two goals, while also winning 13-of-24 face-offs and tallying eight ground balls.
Senior Cameron Flint (Georgetown, Ontario) finished with one goal and an assist, while three others finished with one goal each.
Jesse King led the Buckeyes with six points off two goals and four assists, while Turner Evans chipped in with four goals. ECAC Championship MVP Logan Schuss finished with three points off two goals and an assist.
Both teams played solid defense for the first nine minutes of action before Ohio State jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead goals at the 5:55 mark and 5:06 mark. Denver answered just seven second later as Carraro won the face-off and streaked down the field, sniping a shot past goalie Greg Dutton.
After an Ohio State goal with 4:17 left to play, Berg cut the deficit to one goal as he scooped up a loose ball in front of the Buckeye goal for his 43rd goal of the season. The Buckeyes pushed it back to two goals with seven seconds remaining in the quarter to make it 4-2.
Senior Taylor Young (Littleton, Colo.) made it a one-goal game with 12:42 left in the second quarter, however, the Buckeyes answered with two goals over the next two minutes to stretch their lead to three goals.
Sophomore Jeremy Noble (Orangeville, Ontario) scored with 10:04 left in the second quarter off a pass from Berg to make it a two-goal game. It was Noble’s first game back after an eight-game break due to injury. Law added his first of the game (32nd of the season) with 3:43 left in the half and Berg followed with his second of the game (44th of the season) just 41 seconds later to tie the game at 6-6 heading into the locker room.
Ohio State scored 22 seconds into the third quarter, however, the Pioneers answered with a goal from sophomore Eric Adamson (Anaheim Hills, Calif.) and a “timer-on” goal from Carraro to take their first lead of the game at 8-7. The Buckeyes scored with 3:20 to tie the game and then took the 9-8 lead with 2:26 left in the third. Flint tied the game at 9-9 with 1:45 left to play, scoring his 32nd of the season.
Both teams once again played tough defense to start the fourth quarter and it wasn’t till 4:12 on the clock that the Buckeyes were able to break the stalemate and take the 10-9 lead. Law answered with his 33rd of the season off a pass from Flint to make it 10-10.
Evans made it 11-10 in the final 24 seconds as he scored for the Buckeyes. Carraro won the ensuing face-off and the Pioneers called a timeout with 14 seconds remaining to draw up a final play. Berg took the Pioneers’ final shot of the game, but Dutton, making his ninth save of the game, sealed the win and the Championship for the Buckeyes.
Denver held the advantage in shots (36-27), ground balls (30-24), saves (10-9) and face-offs (13-of-25 to 12-of-25).
The Pioneers now await the results of the NCAA Selection Show that will take place on Sunday, May 5 at 7 p.m. MT live on ESPNU and ESPN3.com.
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