Penn State Men's Lacrosse Season Ended by #16 UMass in Overtime, 10-9
May 4, 2011
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The Penn State men's lacrosse team saw its season end in heartbreaking fashion at Jeffrey Field. The team gave up the game-winning goal to the Minutemen's Anthony Biscardi as the rain was falling just over 1:30 into the overtime period. The goal gave Massachusetts (10-4, 4-2 CAA) a 10-9 final advantage and ended Jeff Tambroni's first season as the head coach of Penn State (7-7, 4-2 CAA). Freshman goalie Austin Kaut (Morton, Pa.) was stellar for the second time this season against the Minutemen, registering 20 saves (Kaut recorded a record 25 saves in the teams' regular season contest in Amherst on March 19th.) However, Anthony Biscardi's tally 1:37 into the overtime period beat Kaut to send UMass on to Saturday's CAA championship game against the University of Delaware.
In a game that saw stellar performances from both goalies, Penn State's Tom LaCrosse (Canandaigua, NY) finally broke the tie after over ten minutes of scoreless play, registering an unassisted tally at the 4:35 mark. Kyle VanThof (Penfield, NY) struck under a minute later for the Lions, putting Penn State up 2-0 at the 3:48 mark. UMass would finally get on the board with an unassisted goal at 2:23 to close out the first-quarter scoring.
The second quarter was all Penn State, as Nick Dolik (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.) continued the unassisted scoring trend with a solo tally at 12:50. Freshman attackman Shane Sturgis (Downingtown, Pa.) finished the first half scoring, beating Massachusetts goalie Tim McCormack on an individual effort from X to send the Lions into halftime ahead 4-1.
To say that the Minutemen came out firing in the third quarter would be an understatement. Massachusetts scored the first three goals of the quarter before sophomore face-off man Danny Henneghan (Beverly Hills, Mich.) would win the ensuing face-off forward to himself and rip a shot past McCormack on the fast break for an unassisted tally to put Penn State back on top, 5-4. After another UMass tally and several stunning saves at both ends of the field, LaCrosse notched his second unassisted goal of the game at the 3:13 mark to put the Lions back on top 6-5. The Minutemen would close the quarter with three straight goals however, closing out the third quarter with an 8-6 advantage over the Lions.
Penn State opened the fourth quarter scoring with a Jack Forster (Jenkintown, Pa.) tally on a Billy Gribbin (Rockville, Md.) assist. To cut the UMass lead to one. But it was Art Kell scoring his third goal of the game under a minute later to push the Massachusetts lead back to a deuce. VanThof scored his second goal of the game for the Lions at 8:54 to cut the lead back to one, and it was Matthew Mackrides (Newtown Square, Pa.) finding Forster to tie the game with 6:37 remaining. It looked like the turkey was on the table for Penn State, as Massachusetts took two penalties with just 1:46 remaining in the game. One of the penalties was an unsportsmanlike conduct call on the goalie McCormack, forcing freshman goalie Reed Goodhue to come on and close out the game for UMass against a potent Penn State man-up unit. After several excellent chances by the Nittany Lions, Goodhue registered the save of a lifetime, stuffing the Penn State captain Mackrides from two yards off the crease with just :43 seconds to play. The Minutemen would hold on through the rest of regulation, forcing the CAA semifinal into overtime.
Henneghan won the faceoff to start the overtime period, and after a sustained Penn State possession, Sturgis took a shot that nearly beat McCormack. The UMass goalie was up to the task however, stopping the freshman and sending the ball down the field. The junior midfielder Biscardi dodged to the middle for the Minutemen, and fired a bounce shot that just beat the freshman Kaut over his left shoulder to send Massachusetts to the CAA title game and put an end to the Nittany Lions' season.
LaCrosse, Forster, and VanThof led the Penn State offense with two goals apiece, while Sturgis, Dolik, and Henneghan each contributed one. Gribbin and Mackrides each chipped in an assist for the Lion offense. Henneghan won eleven of 22 face-offs for the Nittany Lions, while he and Freshman long-stick Steven Bogert (Carlsbad, Calif.) tied for the team lead with five ground balls apiece. Penn State was 1-3 on the man-up, while Massachusetts was 2-3. Kaut registered 20 saves for the Lions, while McCormack had 14 for the Minutement, and Penn State had 19 turnovers to only twelve for Massachusetts.
Penn State finishes its season with a 7-7 record, 4-2 in CAA conference play. Massachussets moves to 10-4, also 4-2 in the conference while moving on to host the Blue Hens of Delaware (10-6, 4-2 CAA) on Saturday in the CAA Championship game.
GAME SUMMARY: Penn State 9, Massachusetts 10
GROUNDBALLS: PSU 32 UM 33
RECORDS: Penn State 7-7, 4-2 CAA; Massachusetts 10-4, 4-2 CAA