Cortland, N.Y. - May 9, 2009 - Despite 22 saves from Tom Albano and Kyle Gable's five goals and two assists, the Springfield College men's lacrosse team fell to Cortland State, 15-12, in the second round of the 2009 NCAA Division III Men's Lacrosse Tournament.
The loss ends the Pride's season as Springfield finishes the year with a 12-7 record. The Red Dragons improve to 16-2 and advance to the third round of the national tournament and will host Western New England on Wednesday.
After a goal from Mike Tota gave the hosts a 14-8 lead with 2:26 left in the third, Springfield mounted a furious rally to get back into the contest. The Pride poured in four unanswered goals in the fourth quarter to make it a 14-12 game with 30 seconds remaining. Four different players found the back of the cage for the Pride in the spurt as Kyle Louer, Jake Beebe, Mike Delia, and Gable each netted goals. Gable's man-up tally with 30 ticks left brought Springfield within two, the closest it had been since there was 6:47 left in the second quarter.
Albano was simply marvelous between the pipes as he recorded 22 saves. The senior gave the fans another great show, as he did last season in the second round of the NCAA Tournament against Cortland, when he tallied 20 saves.
In the first quarter, Gable netted a man-down goal with 4:32 left to make it a 4-2 ball game. However, Cortland's Joey Morgan buried a left-handed strike with only two seconds left in the stanza to give the hosts a 5-2 lead after the first 15 minutes of play.
The teams traded man-up strikes to start the second before Beebe ripped a Joe Macchi feed at the 8:59 mark to bring it within two once again. The Red Dragons used a goal from Jay DiStefano, only to have Macchi answer back with a great individual effort that resulted in his first goal of the game.
However, the final 6:47 of the second quarter was all Cortland, as they netted six unaswered goals to take complete control of the game. Morgan had a pair in the run for the hosts as they went into the locker room up 12-5.
SC scored the first two goals of the second half as Gable and Ryan Thibodeau tried to jumpstart the offense. Springfield's defense certainly clamped down last year's national runner-ups as they limited them to just three goals in the final 30 minutes.
Gable finished with a game-high seven points off five goals and two assists, while Beebe ended his illustrious career at Springfield with two goals and three assists. Louer added two goals as wel in the loss.
Both Tota and Moran finished with four points, while DiStefano lead the Red Dragons with five points. Tom Burke added to goals as well on the day. Matt Hipenbecker finished with eight saves in goal in the win.
A major factor in the game was the face-off circle, as Cortland won 20-of-29 draws. Chris DeLuca was simply dominant, going 15-for-22 to go along with nine ground balls. Springfield's clearing game also struggled, going just 14-for-24 in the game.