By: Karuga Koinange, Sports Editor
Photo courtesy of towsontigers.com
Towson men’s lacrosse picked up a 15-13 victory in a high-scoring matchup against Mount St. Mary’s Saturday afternoon at Johnny Unitas Stadium.
The Tigers (1-1) looked focused to begin the game, putting constant pressure on the Mountaineers (0-2) defense and playing disciplined on both sides of the ball.
Junior attacker Brendan Sunday took over the game in the first quarter. He scored three goals in the period alone, recording his first career hat trick and leading his team to a 5-4 lead entering the second quarter.
The Tigers remained aggressive in the second quarter, playing selfless lacrosse as they moved the ball well and got several players involved.
“I thought we shared the ball well offensively,” Head Coach Shawn Nadelen said. “I thought we got some really nice looks, and some of our guys really came into their own.”
Freshman attacker Phil Wiles, junior attacker Timmy Monahan, sophomore attacker Brody McLean and redshirt junior attacker Dylan Kinnear all registered their first goals of the season in the second stanza.
Junior midfielder Jon Mazza also had an impressive quarter, picking up two assists and a goal as the Tigers took a comfortable 12-5 advantage heading into halftime.
“When the offense got the ball, they were spinning it,” Nadelen said. “It was good to see us share the ball, and to be able to get good looks and bury them.”
Mount St. Mary’s fought back hard to begin the third quarter, taking control of the pace of the game and capitalizing on scoring chances.
The road team cut the deficit to four midway through the period, but Mazza responded with a goal late in the stanza to give his team a 13-8 lead heading into the fourth.
Both teams went back and forth to start the final quarter of play. The Mountaineers scored the first two goals of the period, but the Tigers responded with three consecutive goals to take a five-point advantage.
Mount St. Mary’s sophomore attacker Brendan McCarthy got loose for an unassisted goal, cutting the deficit back down to four as the road team looked to rally in the final five minutes of play.
Freshman midfielder Luke Frankeny scored two consecutive goals for the Mountaineers to put the road team within two with two minutes left to go. On Frankeny’s second goal, the Tigers were playing with a man down as senior defenseman Sid Ewell was handed a one-minute penalty for slashing.
“I thought defensively we settled in a bit,” Nadelen said. “That’ll get a team going if you give them a few goals in that quarter. We didn’t do a great job at either end whether it was not cashing in [on offense] or not defending.”
Despite the comeback attempt, junior midfielder Alex Woodall got possession of the final ground ball and Towson ran out the clock.
“It’s always good to win the first few faceoffs,” Woodall said. “[That] gets us going and allows us to play our game. We did a good job of scouting their faceoff guy. He’s more of a scrapper than a technical guy so we just had to put the ball in the right place. I think we need to win the turnovers after the face, but other than that we just need to keep working to get better.”
Towson looks to continue its winning ways when the team hosts Georgetown Saturday, Feb. 24, at Johnny Unitas Stadium. Game time is set for noon.