Stags Beat No#1 Denver, Face Ohio State
For the second time in as many seasons Sam Snow scored an overtime goal to give the Fairfield University men's lacrosse team a win over nationally ranked Denver. The senior scored 56 seconds into overtime at Peter Barton Stadium in Denver, Colo. to give the Stags a 10-9 over #1 Denver Saturday afternoon in Denver, Colo.
The victory, which improves the Stags record to 8-5 overall and 4-2 in ECAC play, is the program's first-ever over the top-ranked team in the nation. The win also secures the Stags a spot in the ECAC Championship, May 2-4 at Hobart College. Denver falls to 10-3 overall and 5-1 in league play.
Michael Roe won the opening face-off of overtime and the Stags called time out. The game-winning goal came as the Stags were looking to reset after a broken play. Snow caught the ball in the middle, faked a pass, and took an overhand shot that found the back of the net.
Eric Warden did most of the offensive heavy lifting to get the Stags into overtime at all, scoring the teams final three goals of regulation. He finished with a game-high four goals. Snow finished the game with three points, scoring twice and handing out an assist. Colin McLinden also had multiple points with a goal and two assists, while four other players had points in the contest.
Denver jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first quarter, with Colin Scott scoring seven ticks into the game and holding Fairfield scoreless in the quarter. McLinden got the Stags on the board 38 seconds into the second quarter and the two teams exchanged goals in the 6:40 of the period, resulting in a 5-2 Pioneer lead when Eric Law scored with 8:20 to play before halftime.
That would be the largest lead of the game for Denver, as Fairfield responded with a run of its own. Warden scored his first of the game with 6:05 to play in the first-half, beginning a stretch of four unanswered goals to end the quarter. Tristan Sperry scored with 5:22 remaining and Snow scored a man-up goal with 4:39 to play in the period and tying the score 5-5. Fairfield earned its first lead of the game, 6-5, when Alex Cramer put the ball in the back of the net with a second left in the period.
Denver wasted little time in tying the score in the third quarter with Wesley Berg scoring 63 seconds into the second half. Cameron Flint put the Pioneers back in front, 7-6, 2:25 later. Warden scored his second of the game with 3:50 to play in the third, 7-7.
The Pioneers broke that tie with consecutive goals in the opening minutes of the fourth quarter. Harrison Archer scored with 12:56 remaining in regulation to break the tie and Eric Adamson scored 110 seconds later to give Denver a 9-7 advantage. Again Warden answered for Fairfield, scoring with 10:19 and 5:11 to play in the period to tie the score, 9-9. Jack Murphy stopped a Chase Carraro shot at the end of regulation to send the game to overtime.
Murphy finished the game with saves, six coming in the second-half of play. He also had two ground balls and a caused turnover in the victory.
Roe finished 12-22 at the face-off X for the Stags, including five of the six that were contested in the fourth quarter and overtime. He had three ground balls in the game, while Marshall Johnson had four ground balls from the face-off wing.
Law had two goals and two assists to pace the Denver offense, while Berg and Scott added two goals apiece. Carraro was 10-20 at the face-off X for the Pioneers and had three ground balls, as Denver led in that category, 35-21. Ryan LaPlante minded the net for the first-half, allowing six goals with four saves. Jamie Faus took the loss, playing 30:56 and giving up four goals and three assist.
Denver finished with a 36-35 advantage in shots for the game, with an 11-6 edge in the fourth quarter. Both teams cleared the ball well, the Stags going 17-17, and Denver going 16-17. Fairfield was 1-2 in extra-man situations, while holding Denver 0-1. Both teams took care of the ball, with the Stags committing 12 turnovers and Denver just eight.
The Stags close out the regular season next Saturday when the play at Ohio State at 1 p.m.