Army Boots Syracuse in Double-OT Stunner
from staff reports
SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- Army sophomore midfielder Devon Lynch took a feed from junior attackman Jeremy Boltus and scored the double-overtime game-winning goal as the Black Knights shocked two-time defending national Champion Syracuse, 9-8, Sunday night in the first round of the NCAA tournament at the Carrier Dome.
Lynch made a cut to get open in front of the Orange cage and stuck the Boltus feed in the top right corner of the goal with five seconds left on the second-overtime clock for the game-winner as the Black Knights (11-5) outscored Syracuse 5-2 in the second half, including three unanswered goals to finish the contest.
It was Army's first NCAA Tournament victory since upsetting Maryland, 15-11, in 1993 as well as its first win over Syracuse in three tournament meetings. SU defeated the Black Knights, 8-7, in 1984 and 12-3 in 1996.
Junior midfielder Derek Sipperly won 11 of 16 faceoffs on the evening as the Black Knights built a 36-32 advantage in ground balls against the same team that compiled a 38-20 edge in ground balls during a 12-7 defeat at the Carrier Dome on Feb. 28.
Boltus, Lynch and freshman attackman Garrett Thul were each credited with two goals and an assist, while junior midfielder Rob McCallion was credited with a goal and two assists. Junior goalkeeper Tom Palesky made 13 saves to preserve the win.
Making its 30th NCAA Tournament appearance, Syracuse had only lost one other playoff game in the friendly confines of the Carrier Dome, falling to North Carolina, 19-13, in the 1991 semifinals.
Army owns a 4-15 record in 16 all-time appearances in the NCAA Tournament, while Syracuse owns a 61-19 ledger in 30 NCAA Tournament showings.
Army will take on Cornell in the NCAA quarterfinals next Sunday at either noon or 2:30 p.m. at Stony Brook. Cornell needed three overtimes to defeat Loyola, 11-10, in yesterday's other first-round action. The Black Knights will look to avenge a tough 12-11 overtime road defeat earlier this season on March 6.
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