May 5, 2013

LEC Men's Lacrosse Tournament: Warrriors defeat Owls 9-8 in championship

          KEENE, N.H. 5/5/13 – Eastern Conn. State University defended its Little East Conference men's lacrosse championship with a 9-8 upset victory over top-seed Keene State College at Owl Athletic Complex on Sunday.

          Junior Mike Devine (Cheshire, Conn.), who was named the tournament's most outstanding player, scored the tying and go-ahead goal in the fourth quarter to lead ECSU to the win.

          The second seed Warriors (10-7) capture their second consecutive Little East title and their eighth overall crown.  They will receive the LEC's automatic berth to the NCAA Division III Championship tournament.

          Keene State, which saw its eight game winning streak come to an end, completes its season with a 14-3 record.

          Senior Ian Hart (Richmond, Conn.) gave Keene State an early 2-0 lead, scoring two quick goals in a span of a minute.

          After junior Mike Jordan (Cheshire, Conn.) put the Warriors on the board, Hart scored his third goal of the quarter to give KSC a 3-1 lead.

          Senior Taylor Jette (Simsbury, Conn.) scored in the first two minutes of the second quarter to extend the Owls lead to 4-1, but Eastern came back to net the next three goals to tie the score at four-all at the half. Jordan got his second of the game and Devine and freshman Ryan Scott (Norwalk, Conn.) scored with 5:30 to go to knot the score.

          The two teams traded goals in the third quarter.  Junior Tyler Fresen (Newington, Conn.) gave the Warriors its first lead of the game 5-4 at the 11:49 mark.  KSC freshman Tyler McKelvie (Acton, Mass.) scored just over a minute later to tie the score (5-5). 

          Senior Kevin Fetchtamann (Levittown, N.Y.) gave ECSU the lead once again 6-5.  Only to see Hart tie the game at the 6:46 mark with his fourth goal of the game.

          After senior Merrick Smith (Stonington, Conn.) scored the first goal of the fourth quarter, KSC answered with the next two goals to take its last lead of the game.  McKelvie tied the game (7-7) at the 12:24 mark and senior JT Galloway (Simsbury, Conn.) scored 10 seconds later to put KSC on top 8-7.

          Devine scored the tying goal at the 6:11 mark and got the game winner one minute later.

          Keene State had a slim lead in shots 31-29 and won the battle in the face-off circle (11-8).

          Both freshman goalies turned in strong performances.  Alex Sharp (Winchester, Mass.) finished the game with eight saves for Keene State.  Blake Smaldone (Hamilton, Mass.) made 14 saves for the Warriors.

         It's the 10th time the two teams have met in the LEC finals. ECSU has come out on top six times (2003, 2004, 2006, 2009, 2012 and 2013).  KSC won four times (2005, 2007, 2010 and 2011).  It's the first time one of the teams has won the title on the opposing teams' field.