Penn State Bests Towson on Senior Night, 7-6
April 16, 2011
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The Penn State men's lacrosse team (6-5, 3-1 CAA) outscored the Tigers of Towson (6-5, 2-2 CAA) 5-2 in the second half to escape with a 7-6 victory on Senior Night at Penn State's Jeffrey Field. After trailing 4-2 at halftime, the Nittany Lions used a 3-1 third quarter to propel themselves to their third conference victory of the season. Junior captain Matthew Mackrides (Newtown Square, Pa.), led the Penn State offense with two goals and an assist while a handful of other Penn State players notched a goal apiece.
Towson opened the game's scoring with an unassisted tally from Thomas DeNapoli at 13:06. The score stood at 1-0 until sophomore midfielder Nick Dolik (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.) buried a shot off a Mackrides assist to even the score at 6:53. That is where the score would stand in an evenly contested first quarter, as both teams attempted to find their footing in the wet conditions.
Towson jumped ahead with two Matt Hughes goals in less than two minutes at 11:58 and 10:36 to take a 3-1 advantage. The Tigers then pushed the lead to three with an even strength tally at 2:48. Senior midfielder Colton Vosburgh (Kennett Square, Pa.) struck for the Lions just 27 seconds later at the 2:21 mark, with an unassisted tally that found its way between the legs of Towson goalie Travis Love to get the Lions within two. That is where the score stood going into halftime, with the Lions down 4-2.
After an extended halftime due to a power outage at Jeffrey Field, it was Towson opening the third quarter scoring and upping their lead back to three, as they struck at 13:05 to make the score 5-2 in favor of the Tigers. The rest of the half was all Penn State however. Freshman attackman Shane Sturgis (Downingtown, Pa.) scored his first goal of the game at the 7:32 mark to cut the lead back to a deuce, 5-3. Senior midfielder Billy Lloyd (West Chester, Pa.) struck 30 seconds later at 7:02 with an unassisted tally to cut the lead to one. After several scoring opportunities for both sides, senior defender Greg Brown (Doylestown, Pa.) forced a Towson turnover and pushed the break downfield. Brown found Mackrides streaking down the left side and the junior attackman fired a shot past Love to even the score at five.
Mackrides stuck again to open the fourth quarter, as a Danny Henneghan (Beverly Hills, Mich.) face-off win to open the quarter would lead to a great individual effort by Mackrides to take the lead for the Lions at 14:44. Towson came back to tie the contest at 8:10, it was Henneghan on the ensuing face-off win that would make the difference for Penn State. Henneghan won the ball forward, picked up the ground ball, and pushed the break downfield before rifling a shot over the stick of Love to register the game-winner for the Nittany Lions, 7-6.
Mackrides led the offense with three points on two goals and an assist. Dolik, Sturgis, Vosburgh, Henneghan, and Lloyd each had a goal apiece, and Brown had an assist. Freshman goaltender Austin Kaut (Morton, Pa.) made 13 saves on 32 shots faced for the Lions, including several key stops in the closing minutes of the fourth quarter. Henneghan won 10-of-16 face-offs for Penn State, and both teams failed to score on the extra-man. The Lions were a perfect 16-for-16 on clears, while the Tigers were 19-for-22. Penn State also held the advantage in ground balls, outperforming Towson 38-29.
Penn State is now 6-5 on the season with a 3-1 conference record while Towson moves to 2-9, 0-4 in the CAA. The Nittany Lions will close their season with two straight conference night games, traveling to Delaware on Saturday, April 23 for a 7:00pm face-off, and then heading to Hofstra to close out the 2011 regular season on Saturday, April 30 for a 7:00pm contest.
GAME SUMMARY: Penn State 7, Towson 6
GROUNDBALLS: PSU 38 TU 29
RECORDS: Penn State 6-5, 3-1 CAA; Towson 2-9, 0-4 CAA