What a way to kickoff the first round of the NCAA tournament than Pat Spencer and TD Ierlan helping to will their teams to victory while setting personal records, and breaking old ones as well. It was simply a fantastic day to be a lacrosse fan as ESPNU aired a quadruple-header with all four games.
After the opening day of the first round Loyola, Yale, Penn, and Virginia have all punched their tickets to the quarterfinals next weekend.
Loyola 15, Syracuse 13
After a slow start the Greyhounds started to put things together to take the 5-4 lead at the end of the first, but Syracuse got their groove back in the second quarter, taking a 9-7 lead heading into the half.
Loyola had a stellar second half as they were able to comeback, take the lead late in the game, and grow it to secure the 15-13 win. The Syracuse defense looked flat late in the game, allowing Loyola to comeback even with the Syracuse still being able to get it done, for the most part.
While Loyola had their defensive woes, goalie Jacob Stover was lights out making 16 saves to help lead the way. On the offensive end Pat Spencer had 9 points (3G,6A). Spencer’s performance bumped him to second on the all-time NCAA points list with 369. He is also now the all-time leader in assist with 226.
Syracuse was led by Nate Solomon with 4 points (2G,2A) while Jamie Trimboli and Stephen Rehfuss each had 3 points (2G,1A) as well. Drake Porter made 13 saves in cage fo the Orange as well.
Yale 19, Georgetown 16
While Yale got out to a dominating 9-3 lead at the end of the first, the Hoyas weren’t going down without a fight. Georgetown’s offense woke up and was electric with Daniel Bucaro leading the way and helping to exploit that Yale’s defense as much as they could. Yale was able to dominate possession as TD Ierlan won 31 faceoffs (one shy of the NCAA record).
The Bulldogs were able to use that to their advantage and keep their offense going with Matt Brandau continuing to find the back of the net and put the ball right past his brother Chris, in cage for Georgetown. The Bulldogs held on through a big second half effort from Georgetown and secured the win to advance.
Yale was led on offense by Matt Brandau with 5 points (4G,1A) while Matt Gaudet also had 4 goals in the win. Jack Starr made 16 saves in cage for the Bulldogs as well. TD Ierlan also won his 1,000th faceoff win and now has a career total of 1,007.
For Georgetown, Daniel Bucaro led the way with 9 points (8G,1A). Jake Carraway also had 5 points (4G,1A) in the game. Chris Brandau made 14 saves in cage for the Hoyas to help anchor that defense.
Penn 12, Army 8
The Penn Quakers got things started off very hot with a 5-0 lead heading into the second quarter. While the Black Knights defense woke up near the end of the first, it wouldn’t be until the start of the second when their offense did the same. Army tore it up near the end of the second quarter to cut the Penn lead to 7-5 at the half.
The second half started similar to the first as Penn was able to get hot while Army started slow yet again. While Simon Mathis continued to lead the Quakers, their run and gun offense really got going near the end of the third to help them take a 10-6 lead heading into the fourth. The Black Knights finally ended a nine-minute scoring drought with a two-goal run midway through the fourth, Penn was able to answer as they prevailed and secured the win, their first in the tournament since 1988.
Simon Mathias led the way for Penn with 3 goals while Adam Goldner also had 2 goals in the win. Reid Junkin made 10 saves in cage. Kyle Gallagher was the X-factor as he dominated at the faceoff dot going 22-3.
Army was led by Nate Jones with 3 goals while Sean O’Brien had 5 points (2G,3A) as well. In cage for the Black Knights AJ Barretto made 6 saves.
Virginia 19, Robert Morris 10
While Virginia led the whole way, Robert Morris continued to fight and kept hanging in there with the Cavaliers but once the Cavaliers started pulling away the rest was history. Virginia started the game very fast but the Alex Heger helped the Colonials defense make it just 4-2 lead at the end of the fist. Virginia’s offense really woke up in the second quarter as they held a 9-5 lead at the half.
The Virginia offense led by Michael Kraus, Dox Aitken, and other continued to push the throttle in the third. They were seemingly getting any and every look they wanted, and getting plenty of possessions as well. The Colonials were able to step up on both ends and create some good opportunities but the Cavaliers just kept pulling away. Virginia was able to continue their onslaught through the fourth and secure the win to move on.
Virginia was led by Mikey Herring with 6 goals while Michael Kraus had 6 points (2G,3A), and Ryan Conrad tallied5 goals as well. In cage for the Cavaliers Alex Rose made 6 saves.
For Robert Morris they were led by Tyson Gibson with 8 points (3G,5A) and Corson Kealey with 2 goals. Matt Schmidt also had 4 points (2G,2A) in the game as well. Alex Heger made 16 saves in cage for the Colonials to anchor their defense.