February 25, 2012

Men's Lacrosse Tallies 15-14 Overtime Win Versus Hartford

WEST HARTFORD, Conn. – Junior captain James Kennedy (Summit, N.J.) scored a career-best six goals and posted two assists for a career-best eight points, including netting the game-winner in overtime as the Holy Cross men's lacrosse team defeated defending America East champion and 2011 NCAA Tournament participant Hartford, 15-14, on Saturday afternoon in non-conference action. With the win, the Crusaders improve to 1-1 overall, while the Hawks fall to 0-2 overall.

Kennedy now has two career game-winning goals as he scored with three seconds left in the fourth quarter to give the Crusaders their first ever win versus Colgate in the 9-8 victory on March 13, 2010. Junior John Hannan (Manhasset, N.Y.) was also outstanding with a career-best five goals. Junior Matt Ward (Massapequa, N.Y.) led the Crusaders with eight ground balls, while senior captain A.J. Guarente (Gaithersburg, Md.) picked up seven ground balls.

The Hawks were led by Aidan Genik who posted three goals and two assists for five points. Carter Bender tallied three goals and one assist for four points.

After the Hawks took an early 2-0 lead, Kennedy made it a 2-1 contest. After Bender found the back of the net off a pass from Genik, Hannan scored two straight goals to tie the game at 3-3. Kennedy assisted on Hannan's first goal and senior Matt Boylan (Kings Park, N.Y.) posted an assist on his second. After the Hawks moved out to a 5-3 advantage, Kennedy tallied the last goal of the first quarter to cut the Hawks' lead to 5-4. With the Crusaders now trailing 6-4, Kennedy found the back of the net for his seventh career hat-trick and then Ward scored his first collegiate goal to tie the contest at 6-6. Senior Brent Ferraro (Islip, N.Y.) assisted on Ward's goal. But the Hawks took the lead again by netting two straight goals. But the Crusaders then responded by scoring the final three goals of the half to take their first lead of the game at 9-8. Freshman Clay Haarmann (Mendham, N.J.) scored his first collegiate goal, Kennedy netted his fourth of the game and Hannan posted his fourth career hat-trick. Kennedy assisted on Hannan's goal.

Hannan increased the Crusaders' lead to 10-8 when he scored the first goal of the third quarter off a pass from Boylan. After Martin Bowes netted a man-up goal for the Hawks, senior Andrew Morici (Manhasset, N.Y.) gave HC an 11-9 lead. With the score now 11-10, Kennedy netted the first goal of the fourth quarter to increase the lead to 12-10. With the Crusaders now leading 12-11, Hannan and senior Colin McGeehin (Newtown Square, Pa.) made it a 14-11 contest with 7:39 left. Morici assisted on Hannan's goal. The Hawks responded by scoring three straight including a goal by Ryan Compitello with just 15 seconds left to force the game to overtime. Kennedy gave the Crusaders the 15-14 win with a man-up goal with 3:32 left in overtime.  

Sophomore goalie Will Cummings (Summit, N.J.) posted 12 saves to earn his first collegiate win and improves to 1-1 on the season, while Scott Bement tallied 11 saves for the Hawks and is now 0-2. The Hawks outshot the Crusaders 43-36, while Hartford picked up 38 ground balls and Holy Cross posted 37. The Crusaders won 18 of 32 face-offs as Guarente won 17 of 30. Holy Cross went 1-2 on extra-man opportunities and Hartford went 1-3. The Crusaders went 16-19 on clear-attempts and the Hawks went 16-16.

The Crusaders return to action on Tuesday, Feb. 28, when they play their home-opener at Holy Cross Field versus No. 14 Harvard at 4:00 p.m. Go here to follow a live blog of the game.