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March 23, 2014

Shorthanded Men's Lacrosse Battles No. 12 Chestnut Hill to OT in ECC Clash

DOBBS FERRY, N.Y. (Mar. 23, 2014) – A shorthanded Mercy College men's lacrosse team renewed its annual rivalry with No. 12 Chestnut Hill College in an exhilarating overtime East Coast Conference matchup on Sunday afternoon.   

A rash of injuries and illnesses left the Mavericks severely shorthanded in the midfield, but Mercy still posted a dominant first quarter and rallied to send the game into overtime in another classic battle between the bitter foes.

Chestnut Hill improves to .500 at 3-3 overall and 2-1 in the ECC while Mercy drops to 6-3 (0-3).

The Mavericks surged to a 3-0 lead in the first quarter as freshman Nick Wilcox (Hamburg, N.Y. / Hamburg) kicked things off with a drive to the crease for the score at the 10:10 mark.  Graduate student Kevin Glueckert (Bethpage, N.Y. / Univ. at Albany) immediately picked up his second faceoff of what would be a perfect 8-for-8 in the half and dished the ball right to onrushing freshman Ross Schnitzer (Scarsdale, N.Y. / Loyola Univ. Md.), who powered it home for the 2-0 lead.  Freshman Daniel Speicher (Seaford, N.Y. / Seaford) then build on his four-point effort earlier in the week with a tally from sophomore Kyle Stockton (Medford, N.Y. / Patchogue-Medford) with just eight seconds left in the quarter.

Chestnut Hill would take control over the next two quarters, however.  The Griffins scored five unanswered goals, including two on man-up opportunities, while shutting down the Mavericks' offense to tie the game at halftime and take a 5-3 lead heading into the fourth quarter.

Stockton gave Mercy some hope with a man-up strike on an assist from Wilcox just 10 seconds into the penalty, but Chestnut Hill began to burn the clock as the final whistle approached.  The Griffins held the ball for over three full minutes from the 7:08 mark to 3:52 and only briefly gave it away twice over the following two minutes as penalties kept the Mavericks from being able to establish possession. 

Mercy was finally able to get control of the ball on a blocked shot with 1:22 remaining in the game and drove downfield looking for the last-chance equalizer.  Head Coach Jordan Levine took a timeout with 48 seconds left to draw up a play, and the Mavericks executed it to perfection just 16 seconds later as junior Jesse Wood (Binghamton, N.Y. / Seton Catholic Central) took the ball behind the cage and deftly flipped it over to junior Zack Haun (West Seneca, N.Y. / West Seneca East Senior), who slotted it home from point-blank range to tie the game at 5-5.  Glueckert won the ensuing faceoff and was able to get off two shots, forcing one save, before regulation ended.

The Mavericks were hit with a penalty 49 seconds into the overtime period, but the defense held strong to keep Chestnut Hill from getting off any more than a desperate last-second attempt that went well wide of the frame.  The Mavericks were able to force what would have been a turnover halfway through the penalty, but an errant pass destined for the sideline hit the official and stayed in play, allowing the Griffins to keep the ball.  That bit of misfortune would come back to haunt Mercy soon, as Chestnut Hill found the winner just six seconds after the man-up chance expired.

Glueckert won an impressive 12-of-14 faceoffs and picked up six ground balls while Wood grabbed a game-high seven ground balls.  Sophomore A.J. Pellati (West Islip, N.Y. / West Islip) stopped 10 of 16 shots in the cage.

Levine and the Mavericks will take the week of Spring Break to rest and heal before hosting Post University on April 2.