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FAIRFIELD, Conn.; March 6, 2003 The No. 19 Penn State men??s lacrosse team fell 10-6 to the Fairfield Stags Saturday to fall to 1-2 overall. Fairfield now starts the season 3-0.
Fairfield jumped out to a 6-0 lead and never looked back. Fairfield senior Peter Vlahakis dominated on face-offs, while the Nittany Lions held the slight advantage in shots, 37-33 and groundballs 40-38. Freshman goalie Michael Kruger put in an outstanding performance between the pipes, making 18 saves while Penn State's Josh LaGrow (Skaneateles, N.Y.) stopped six.
Senior Matt Baglio opened the scoring for Fairfield, connecting off a pass from classmate Troy Bamann at the 7:44 mark. The score would remain at 1-0 until the Stags put up four unanswered goals in the final four minutes of the first period to take the 5-0 lead as senior Rory McCarthy registered a goal off a pass from Baglio and assisted on goals by senior Tom Werney and freshman Mike Brocklet. Werney added another goal during the run, with the assist credited to sophomore Josh Thornton.
Three-minutes into the second half, senior Garrett Bamann found his brother Troy Bamann who tallied his lone goal of the day to give Fairfield a commanding 6-0 lead.
The Nittany Lions got on the board with 10:22 remaining in the half as John Eremus (Rosemont, Pa.) scored off a pass from Patrick Heim (Wayne, Pa.). Just over one minute later, Werney answered with what would prove to be the game-winner, but Eremus and Heim connected again to close out the scoring in the half, cutting the Fairfield lead to 7-2 at intermission.
Fairfield didn't let down coming out of the break as freshman Greg Downing scored 49 seconds into the third period and then again at the 13:14 mark to give Fairfield their biggest lead of the game, 9-2.
Penn State would outscore the Stags, 4-1 over the final 22 minutes, with McCarthy scoring Fairfield's last goal of the day, but it was too little, too late as the Stags held on for the 10-6 victory.Down the stretch, PSU got goals from Gil Pearsall (Carthage, N.Y.) and Greg Hale (Pittsford, N.Y.), both off feeds from Nate Whitaker (Great Falls, Va.) in the third period. Senior Edmond Perry (Port Washington, N.Y.) scored an unassisted goal in the fourth period followed by another unassisted score from Pearsall to close-out the Penn State scoring.
Penn State??s next game is Wednesday, March 10, vs. Providence. The game will be held at Johns Hopkins and begins at 7:30 p.m.