Saturday, March 21, 2015

University of Albany MLAX Pounds Hartford 24-6 for 2-0 Start in America East Play, Fourth-Straight Win - UAlbany Sports 2015

ALBANY, N.Y. – Scoring 13 of the game’s first 14 goals, the UAlbany men’s lacrosse team crushed Hartford 24-6 at home for the fourth-straight win and a 2-0 start to conference play. UAlbany (5-1, 2-0 AE) outscored Hartford (3-4, 1-1 AE) by at least five goals in the first, second and fourth quarters and did not allow more than two goals in any period. Combined with Tuesday’s victory over Canisius, UAlbany has outscored its foes 50-12 in its last two games. “We are starting to play with a lot of confidence,” said coach Scott Marr, whose UAlbany team has won its last 12 America East games. “I am pleased with the effort on both sides of the ball, and we played a complete game today.” With the win, UAlbany stands in first place in the America East, a half-game ahead of Binghamton at 1-0. Connor Fields set a new career-high in points with seven off five goals and two assists, adding another career-high with seven ground balls. “We were working the ball well, and we knew we were facing a good team, and we executed,” said Fields. “We are starting to get used to each other, and our chemistry is coming together.” Seth Oakes also earned a career-high with six points off four goals and two assists. Lyle Thompson finished with three goals, an assist and four ground balls. Bennett Drake scored a hat trick and Justin Reh had three assists. Blaze Riorden earned the win in goal, saving nine in 13 shots on goal in the first three quarters. Defensemen Eric Cantor and AJ Kluck each caused three turnovers. In all, 16 UAlbany players scored points and 24 Great Danes scooped at least one ground ball. For Hartford, Justin Huggins scored two goals and grabbed two ground balls. Rion Davison had a goal and an assist. The loss went to goalkeeper Ryan Vanderford, who had eight saves and 14 goals allowed in the first half. UAlbany struck first in the opening minutes with a shovel shot from Thompson. Minutes later, Oakes got the ball after a quick clear and scored a low shot. Kyle McClancy followed with a goal, scoring with John Maloney drawing a double team to open him up. After a missed shot, Matthew Bertrams got a second chance from Oakes and scored. Next possession, Fields stole Vanderford’s pass, found Thompson for the catch and shoot goal. 30 seconds later on a man-up situation, Oakes scored another for the 6-0 run. Huggins scored to put Hartford on the board with 1:45 left, leading UAlbany to lead 6-1 after the first period. UAlbany continued the attack into the second period, seeing Fields to pass to Bertrams for the rocket shot and score in the opening minutes. UAlbany rolled off three goals in a span of 92 seconds: Oakes scored on a man-up situation from Maloney, Fields fired a quick shot after being given space then scored another on a ground ball throw inbetween the keeper’s feet. With 8:12 left in the 2nd following two missed shots, McClancy got a third chance, running from around the cage and firing for the goal. Minutes later, Thompson drew a double team and passes to a charging Fields for the shot and score, then Thompson netted one of his own 37 seconds later on a shot just below the crossbar off a pass from Derrick Eccles. Hartford added two in the closing minutes of the half, with Tim Cox getting one back off the faceoff with one second left on the clock, giving UAlbany a 14-3 lead at the break. After nearly four minutes of no scoring in the third, Davison scored off a failed UAlbany clear. Each side was not able to score in the following four-and-a-half minutes. After Hartford got a man-up situation, Riorden made a save and cleared. Hartford knocked the ball loose, with Cody Kilcoyne emerging from the scrum with the ball. He passed to Oakes, who found Fields for the goal man-down. Two minutes later, Oakes found the net again right next to the circle from Reh. Before the end of the period, Drake scored a man-up goal with two seconds left to make it 17-4 after three quarters. UAlbany played many of its reserves starting in the fourth quarter, including JD Colarusso in goal. In the first five minutes, Fields and Tom Nuckel scored goals to extend the lead to 15. Kevin O’Shea scored on a low shot to stop the run for the Great Danes. Drake countered that score with a catch and shoot score from Ky Tarbell. A minute later, Chris Underwood led the UAlbany clear effort, finding Jake Cullen for the goal. After winning the next faceoff, UAlbany went to Tyler Aycock for a blazing shot and score inside the post. After Trevor O’Brien scored for Hartford, Justin Zelen and Drake each scored man-up goals, both assisted by Reh, to set the eventual final score at 24-6. UAlbany will hit the road on Wednesday to take on Harvard, ranked in the top-16 in both the coaches and media poll, on Wednesday, March 25th at 7 p.m.

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