(Photo Courtesy of Yale Athletics)
One of the greatest series in the past decade has been the series between Penn and Yale during the 2019 season. The two squads met in regular-season Ivy League competition, the Ivy League Tournament, and the NCAA Tournament. And none of the three meetings disappointed.
Penn took down Yale in a triple-overtime thriller in the regular season and beat the Bulldogs in regulation in the Ivy League championship game. But in the NCAA Tournament, Yale bested Penn in overtime to cap off, arguably, the best game of the tournament and maybe even the best game of the season.
You can find the full game on YouTube.
This game was, without a doubt, a back-and-forth, gritty, and physical battle from the opening faceoff through the game-winning overtime goal. The game featured 37 combined goals, 13 ties, and six lead changes.
Yale went ahead 7-5 in the first quarter, leaning heavily on TD Ierlan’s success at the faceoff dot. But when Penn’ Kyle Gallagher got the best of the battle at the dot in the second quarter, helping the Quakers spark a 6-3 run in the quarter take the lead, 11-10 at the half.
While the second half was even tighter than the first, Yale went on a three-goal run in the fourth quarter to go-ahead 17-15 with 7:07 in regulation. However, a two-goal run by Penn in the final minute of the game helped tie things up at 18 and force overtime. Simon Mathias drove from behind the cage and was able to get his hands free and score the game-tying and overtime forcing goal with a shot around the Yale defenseman with just 4.4 seconds left on the clock.
Ierlan won the faceoff to give Yale the first possession of overtime. Reed Junkin stopped the Matt Gaudet shot on the Bulldogs’ first possession of overtime and the Quakers pushed the ball up the field in a hurry, however, a Quaker stepped offsides to scoop up the ground ball off an errant pass, giving the ball back to Yale, who called a timeout.
Jack Tight scored the game-winner coming out of that timeout. Tight stubbled to the ground as he swept across the top, got back up and slipped through two Penn defenders, and put one right past Junkin to send the Bulldogs to Championship Weekend.
Game Within The Game
The game within the game was undoubtedly at the faceoff dot, where TD Ierlan and Kyle Gallagher went at each other all game long. Ierlan started the game hot, going 10-for-13 in the first quarter. Gallagher owned the second quarter, going 8-for-10. The two were nearly dead even in the second half.
Ierlan went 22-for-40 (55%) the entire game and Gallagher went 19-for-40 (48%).
Yale: While Jack Tight scored the game-winner, it was Jackson Morrill that took control of the Bulldog offense and played out of his mind in this contest. The attackman stole the show, recording seven points (4G/3A) in the victory.
Penn: In addition to scoring the overtime forcing goal, Simon Mathias did a little bit of everything for Penn, as he took the reigns of the offense, as usual. Mathias ended the game with five points (3G/2A). He also scooped up one ground ball.
Play Of The Game
Jack Tigh’s game-winner in overtime.
— Lacrosse Bucket (@LacrosseBucket) June 27, 2020