It was a chilly one in Louisville,Ky as the Detroit Mercy Titans defeated the Bellarmine Knights in a tight back-and-forth contest. It was a Matthew Vangalen goal that secured the win in the final seconds for the Titans.
Detroit Mercy was led by Matthew Vangalen and Brett Erskine on the offensive end. Vangalen notched 8 points (3G,A), while Erskine tallied 6 points (5G,1A) in the win. Alex Jarzembowski was the difference in this game, winning a school record 27-33 faceoffs for the Titans. In goal, Logan Shamblin made 9 saves on the day.
Bellarmine was led by Riley Seay as he tallied 7 points (5G,2A). Ian Miller tallied 4 points (2G,2A) and Blake Roshkowski had a hat trick as well. Jordan Dondoyano made 20 saves for the Knights.
This game started off quickly with Ian Miller putting the Knights on the board first. Matthew Vangalen answered just a few minutes later for the Titans to make it a 1-1 tie. A three goal run for the Knights put them up 4-1 with 3:33 in the first. Riley Seay had two goals during that three goals run. Two goals from Titans late in the first cut it to a one goal 4-3 Bellarmine lead heading into the second.
In the second it was a very back-and-forth game of runs with a lot of transition play. Bellarmine started out with two goals early to go up 5-3. Detroit Mercy answered with two inside goals to make it a one goal game. Bellarmine ended the half with a lot of energy after getting two late goals to go up 8-5 at the half.
Detroit Mercy took over in the third as they were winning in every facet of the game. The Titans were able to use their successes on the defensive end to fuel a great offense showing.
After Bellarmine got the first goal of the third, Detroit Mercy went on a three goal run to cut the Bellarmine lead to 9-8. Brett Erskine caught fire, scoring two of the three goals for the Titans during that run. Riley Seay was able to stop the bleeding for the Knights, but the Titans answered quickly.
Another three goal run for the Titans midway through the third gave Detroit Mercy their first lead of the game, going up 11-10 with 4:09 left in the third. It was Seth Mendell that got hot during that Titans run as he scored two of the three goals. Morgan Mack tied the game at 11 for Bellarmine late in the fourth.
Fans inside Owsley B. Frazier Stadium were on the edge of their seats throughout the fourth quarter with each team striking back and one another. Brett Erskine gave the Detroit Mercy the lead back 12-11 with an early fourth quarter goal.
Bellarmine gained a ton of energy midway though the fourth with a few great defensive stops and momentum changing saves from Dondoyano. Blake Roshkowski got Knights fans up and on their feet with two huge outside rips to give Bellarmine the 13-12 lead. The Titans striked back with two goals courtesy of Seth Mendell and Brett Erskine to take back the lead 14-13 with 6:35 in the fourth.
After some huge stops from both defenses the Bellarmine offense woke up with a Riley Seay goal to tie things up at 14 all with :45 in the fourth. Detroit Mercy won the faceoff and was able to get the ball inside for a Matthew Vangalen for the game winning goal with :9 on the clock. The Titans walked away with the very close 15-14 win.
Both squads will be in action next week as Detroit Mercy travels to Air Force on March 6th and Bellarmine travels to Utah on March 9th.
We are just about three weeks away from the start of the 2019 NCAA season as February 1st marks opening day. The first game of the NCAA season will be Utah vs Vermont to kick off what should be an exciting season.
Over the next few weeks I will be giving my own personal conference by conference predictions for this upcoming 2019 season. Going in alphabetical order we move on and take a look at the MAAC.
1. Detroit Mercy
The Titans come into the 2019 season after a 2018 campaign where they went 9-7 and lost in the MAAC championship game. Detroit Mercy brings back a lot of talent from last years squad and are capable of making another run.
Detroit Mercy will be led on offense by senior attackman Matthew Vangalen, sophmore attackman Brett Erskine, and junior attackman Seth Mendell among others. On defense the Titans will see sophomore Paul Manuszak and junior Alex Akins take charge as some of the leaders on that end of the field. To anchor the defense in goal will be sophomore Logan Shamblin as he looks to improve off of an impressive freshman campaign. Taking the faceoffs for the Titans this year looks to be junior Alex Jarzembowksi.
Monmouth has had some good success in just five years of having a program. They went 7-8 last season and lost to Detroit Mercy in the MAAC semifinals. The Hawks do lose quite a bit of guys, but they also bring back a lot of talent from last year.
On offense Monmouth returns three of their top five point scorers from last season in senior attackman Griffin Figel, senior attackman Hunter Jones, and junior midfielder Zach Clemente. Those three will look to lead that offense this season. At the facoff dot it looks like sophomore Chris Clemente will be taking the majority of the draws this year. Defensively they sophomore Chris Hervada and senior LSM Gordon Phillips will be just two of the leaders on that end of the field. In goal to anchor the defense Mike Yanovitch will be the starter as he looks to improve off of a good sophomore campaign.
The Golden Eagles had an almost cinderella ending to last season when they upset everyone and won the MAAC. They would then lose to Robert Morris in the NCAA Tournament play-in game. The Griffins do lose a lot of star’s but still return a lot of talent on both ends of the field.
Defensively the Griffins will be led by junior LSM Reece Eddy, senior Logan Monroe, and others. In goal to anchor the defense the Griffins have a question mark as they graduated Liam Ganzhorn. It looks like junior Cody Hass will be the starter in goal this season. On the offensive end of the field junior attackman Mathieu Boissonneault and junior midfielder Carter Stefaniak will look to be the leaders this season. Sophomore Tanner Heinchon looks to be the guy to take the majority of the faceoffs this season for the Griffins.
The Bobcats have been through a lot over the past few months as the players were suspended as the program was investigated. The end result was a head coaching change as Mason Poli will be the interim head coach in 2019. It will be interesting to see what Quinnipiac can do after all that happened this fall.
While there has been a lot of turmoil they still return a great deal of talent that can get the job done and play at a very high level. On offense the Bobcats will look to senior midfielder Foster Cuomo, sophomore attackman Jake Tomsik, senior attackman Mike fletcher and others. At the faceoff dot it looks like junior Kevin Blank will be the main guy but sophomore Ryan Kayne could also be taking quite a few as well. On the defensive side of the field the Bobcats graduate quite a bit. Senior’s Bryce Nalls and Ryan Trzcinski will be two guys looking to lead on the defensive end of the field. In goal it will be junior Joe Zukauskas getting that starting spot again this season.
The Red Foxes come into the 2019 season after a disapointing 2018 campaign where they went 3-12. Marist looks to turn things around here in 2019 and get back to the MAAC tournament.
Marist returns four of their top five point scorers from last season in junior attackman Joe Tierney, sophomore attackman Jason Intermesoli, sophomore attackman Jake Weinmann, and junior midfielder Michael Smith. That core of the offense looks to be much improved and lead this season on that end of the field. On defense Marist return senior James Sarrocco, redshirt-junior LSM Sam Ahlgrim, and others that look to lead that defense. In goal it appears that senior David Meyer will be the starter aftering being the backup last season. Junior Petyton Smith will be back taking faceoffs for the red Foxes again this season.
After a 2018 where they went 3-9 and an offseason that saw Liam Gleason take the reigns of the program as the new head coach the Saints look to be much improved coming into the 2019 season.
Siena returns does graduate a lot but they also bring back some talent as well. The Saints return three of their top five scorers from as year ago in senior attackman Mike Reilly, senior attackman Kennan Cook, and sophomore attackman Nick Casner. On defense the Saints will look to junior Jack Drillock and others to help lead on that side of the ball. In goal sophomore Anthony Tebbano will look to improve off of a good freshman campaign as the starter. Taking faceoffs it appears sophomore Jason Zou will be their main guy this season.
Manhattan comes into the 2019 season after a 2018 campaign where they went 4-10. The Jaspers look for improvements in 2019 as they will have a more experienced team this season with a lot of returning players.
The Jaspers wil return all of their top five point scorers to lead their offense. Senior attackman Parker Giarratanan, junior midfielder Luke Hanson, and junior attackman Brandon Grinnell will be three of the leaders on that offense this season. At the faceoff dot senior Joseph Bressingham looks to be the man taking the majority of the draws this season. On defende the Jaspers will be led by junior Rob Johnson and others. In goal sophomore Brendan Krebs looks to be the starter this year.
8. St. Bonaventure
Coach Randy Mearns and the Bonnie come into their first season as a DI program. There has been a lot of hype and talk around the Bonnies as they look to get off to a good start. They will go through plenty of growing pains this year with all the youth that they have but I expect them to win at least a few games. In their fall scrimmage against esentially what is the Israeli developmental team a few guys that stuck out were Austin Blumbergs, Michael Caulfield, and really their whole defense played well and looked very well put together. They have 30 plus freshman but the Bonnies may surprise a few this season.
For more analysis of St. Bonaventure check out my full analysis of their fall scrimmage against Israel here.
A- Matt Vangalen, Detroit Mercy A- Foster Cuomo, Quinnipiac A- Parker Giarratana, Manhattan A- Jake Tomsik, Quinnipiac M- Carter Stefaniak, Canisius M- Zach Clemente, Monmouth M- Matt Frost, Quinnipiac FO- Alex Jarzembowski, Detroit Mercy SSDM- Nick Pepe, Siena LSM- Gordon Phillips, Monmouth D- Chris Hervada, Monmouth D- Alex Akins, Detroit D- James Sarrocco, Marist G- Noah Lode, Monmouth