Stingly Defense Leads Cortland Over Union
from press release
CORTLAND, N.Y. – The nationally second-ranked Cortland men's lacrosse team held 14th-ranked Union to just one goal in each quarter and defeated the Dutchmen, 9-4, in the NCAA Div. III Men's Lacrosse Quarterfinals Wednesday afternoon at the SUNY Cortland Stadium Complex. The Red Dragons, who set a school record with their 20th win against no losses, advanced to the national semifinals for the sixth time in the last seven years and will host fourth-ranked Tufts, a 15-13 winner versus RIT in the quarterfinals, Sunday, May 20 at a time to be determined. The Dutchmen ended their season at 13-5.
Seven different players scored at least one goal for Cortland, led by sophomore Joe Slavik (Binghamton/Seton Catholic) who tallied two goals and one assist and senior Greg Wright (Irondequoit/West Irondequoit) with a pair of goals. Senior Mike Tota (Webster/Webster Schroeder) contributed one goal and one assist, and seniors Zack Mulvaney (Deferiet/Carthage) and Eric Richards (Skaneateles) and juniors Tom Casey (Yorktown) and Taylor Mendoza (Greensboro, NC/Western Guilford) each netted a goal. Freshman Mike Cantelli (Holmdel, NJ) picked up an assist.
Junior goalie Mike Kaminski (Sayville) turned aside 10 shots in 59 minutes, six seconds before giving way to sophomore Scott Tota (Webster/Webster Schroeder), who did not face a shot in the final 32 seconds. Junior Nick Jarvis (Syracuse/Onondaga Central) won 9-of-16 faceoffs. Sophomore Doug Meehan (Sayville) collected a game-high five ground balls, Mike Tota had four and sophomore Brian Winterfeldt (Merrick/Calhoun) also scooped up four ground balls.
Seniors Ted McKenna (Westford, MA/Philips Exeter Academy) and Nick Alfonzetti (Brewster) and juniors Peter Greisinger (Winchester, MA) and Nolan Connors (Niskayuna) scored one goal apiece for Union, while sophomore Rob Santangelo (Rye) chipped in with an assist. Senior goalie Sean Aaron (Great Falls, VA/Philips Academy) registered 16 saves in 59:28, and freshman Stefan Basile (Fayetteville/Fayetteville-Manlius) played the final 32 seconds between the pipes.
The game featured a deliberate pace throughout as each team worked the ball in search of quality scoring chances. Tota gave Cortland a 1-0 lead at 7:49 off Slavik's feed with a man-up goal, and Mendoza made it 2-0 at 4:24. Greisinger put the Dutchmen on the scoreboard just over a minute later and the Red Dragons led 2-1 after the opening 15 minutes of play. Cortland took control of the game in the second quarter, rattling off four consecutive goals for a 6-1 lead. Slavik sandwiched a pair of goals around a Wright score and Casey found the top corner of the net with a bounce shot at 3:05. The Dutchmen, however, took some momentum into halftime when Connors collected a loose ball on the right side of the cage and tucked in a shot at the horn to make it 6-2 at the break.
Union came out quick in the third quarter, pulling to within 6-3 on Alfonzetti's unassisted goal at 14:07. That goal would prove to be the only score of the third quarter as Aaron registered six of his saves in the game on eight Cortland shots. In the fourth, Wright and Mulvaney recorded quick scores at 14:13 and 12:02, and the Red Dragons led, 8-3. McKenna answered with his goal at 10:49 to make it 8-4, but Cortland kept the Dutchmen from scoring again and Richards completed the scoring with an unassisted effort at 7:20 for the 9-4 final.
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