Lehigh Leads from Start to Finish over HC
from press release
BETHLEHEM, Pa. – Lehigh jumped out to a
3-0 lead on Holy Cross in the first quarter and the Mountain Hawks
never looked back as they downed the Crusaders 11-5 at the Ulrich
Sports Complex on Saturday afternoon to earn their first Patriot
League win of the season. Senior Brian Bienemann led the way
for the Brown and White with four goals and an assist, while
Cameron Lao-Gosney and David DiMaria added two scores as Lehigh
improves to 4-5 overall and 1-2 in the Patriot League with the
win. Five different Crusaders scored for the visitors who
drop to 2-7 overall and 1-2 in league action.
“I think that was as close to a full 60-minute effort as we’ve gotten all year,” Lehigh head coach Kevin Cassese said afterwards. “Certainly there is room for improvement, but I thought our guys battled and really carried the momentum throughout the game.” He continued, “We are a long way from where we want to be but this shows us that we can fight for the full 60 minutes.”
Lehigh held a decided advantage in shots on the day as the Mountain Hawks unleashed 42 attempts to Holy Cross’ 17. Bienemann led the way with 15 of those shots while freshman Dante Fantoni was credited with six. Senior Evan Guerrero caused three turnovers, scooped up one ground ball and also scored his first goal of the season, while junior Will Scudder won 11-of-18 face-offs and scooped up six ground balls. DiMaria and Cameron Lao-Gosney led the Brown and White with two assists each and freshman Dan Carr stopped nine shots in goal.
“I thought our attack did a good job of controlling the pace and commanding the tempo,” Cassese commented. “Brian Bienemann did a great job today; we’ve been asking him to be more assertive and I think today was a major stepping stone for him.” He went onto add, “Our defense played well, we limited Holy Cross’ opportunities and did a good job with the ride. Anytime the ball was down on the offensive end our guys seemed to come up with it and that was great to see.”
Kenny Minor led the Crusaders with six shots on the afternoon, while Edison Parzanese and James Kennedy took three apiece. Tim Pond won four-of-eight in the X and scooped up two ground balls, while Douglas Broussard led Holy Cross with six GBs. As a team the Crusaders caused seven turnovers and Connor Sweeney made 11 saves in 60 minutes of action in goal.
Bienemann showed early that it was his day as he netted the first score of the game off an assist from DiMaria at the 10:11 mark of the opening quarter. DiMaria made it a two-goal lead for Lehigh with his score ten minutes later and Cameron Lao-Gosney’s goal with 1:45 on the clock gave the Brown and White a 3-0 advantage. Conor McKenna scored Holy Cross’ first goal of the day with 1:39 remaining in the quarter, sending the teams into the second with the Mountain Hawks up 3-1.
Kennedy opened the second quarter with his 12th score of the season to bring Holy Cross within one, but Cameron Lao-Gosney responded with an unassisted goal at the 10:04 mark to give the Mountain Hawks a two-goal lead. Parzanese answered for the visitors with a score at the 6:09 mark to again make it a one-goal affair, but Bienemann scored the final two goals of the half, including one with just 17 ticks on the clock to send the Brown and White into halftime with a 6-3 lead.
John Hannan brought Holy Cross within two with a goal 2:26 into the third, but Bienemann scored one more time for Lehigh as the home team went on top 7-4. Adam Johnston then got into the act as he scored on a gorgeous feed from DiMaria as the Mountain Hawks opened up an 8-4 lead with 5:19 remaining in the third. Kenny Minor beat Carr with a shot with five seconds to play in the quarter however, sending the teams into the final 15 minutes with Lehigh on top 8-5.
Fantoni found Guerrero for the senior’s first score of the season less than two minutes into the fourth and Lehigh was on top 9-5, while Fantoni’s goal at the 12:10 mark gave Lehigh a 10-5 advantage. DiMaria put the game out of reach with his sixth score of the season with 9:51 to play and from there Lehigh controlled possession to earn its second win in its last three games.
Lehigh hits the road for its next game when the Mountain Hawks travel to New York to take on Binghamton on Tuesday evening. The opening face-off is set for 7:00.
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