The Bellarmine Knights held off a second half comeback from the VMI Keydets to secure their second win of the season, first at home. While the Knight started the game hot they took a turn for the worst in the third quarter and had to stave off an impressive comeback from VMI in order to secure the 13-12 win.
VMI was led on offense by Jon Fant, John Daniel, and Ryan Perouty who each had a hat trick. Fant tallied 5 points (3G,2A), Daniel had 4 points (3G,1A), and Perouty put up 3 goals. Kyle Walsh led the Keydets defense with 4 caused turnovers and 3 ground balls. The nation’s leader in caused turnovers was swarming all over the field all game long. In cage, Benjamin Stump and Bill Osteen split time, Stump recorded 4 saves while Osteen made 3 saves.
Ian Miller and Landon Trout led the Bellarmine offense, each netting a hat trick. Miller tallied 6 points (3G,3A) and Trout had 4 points (3G,1A). On defense Jon Robbins was stellar at SSDM, making plays all over the field and really giving the Keydets offense trouble. The sophomore was just recently moved to SSDM from defense/LSM. Jordan Dondoyano made 13 saves in cage for the Knights.
After a few feeling out possessions Bellarmine got the scoring started with a Griffin Bowie goal. That goal started a three-goal run from Bellarmine in which Ian Miller and Landon Trout both found the back of the net. VMI finally found the back of the cage with a Jon Fant goal off a dodge sweeping across the top.
Landon Trout closed out the first quarter with a Man-Up goal with 14 seconds left in the first. Trout’s goal gave Bellarmine a 4-1 lead heading into the second and was the start of a four-goal run.
Bellarmine used that run to really pick up the pace early in the second. With a lot of energy on their side the Knights were able to get it done on both ends of the field. However, VMI would steal some of that energy with a John Daniel goal late in the second. Bellarmine would score two in the last-minute of the half, but it felt the Knights energy had diminished a bit as they head into the locker room.
Ian Miller started the scoring in the third to push the Bellarmine lead out to 10-2 just a few seconds into the second half. The Keydets woke up in the third as they went on a four-goal run to cut the lead to 10-6 midway through the third. The Keydets had all the energy and were winning at both ends of the field, and in transition.
The third ended with some back-and-forth play as Bellarmine held a 12-7 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
VMI continued to chip away at the lead in the fourth with John Daniel starting the scoring before Stephen Votto answered for Bellarmine, scoring their last goal of the game. The Keydets took advantage of every opportunity they were given down the stretch, capitalizing off of Bellarmine’s mistakes. The Keydets ended the game with a four-goal run but couldn’t complete the comeback.
Jon Fant made it a one-goal game with 5:01 in the fourth. While the Keydets had plenty of opportunities in the final minutes of the game the Bellarmine defense stood strong to subdue the attacking VMI offense and secure the 13-12 win.
Bellarmine will be on the road next Saturday as they will face Furman. VMI will be at home against Jacksonville next Saturday.