Ephs drop thriller against Cardinals 19-17

Riley Hoffman ’17 scored one goal against Wesleyan while anchoring the midfield last Saturday. Photo courtesy of Sports Information.
Riley Hoffman ’17 scored one goal against Wesleyan while anchoring the midfield last Saturday. Photo courtesy of Sports Information.

Michael Fahey ’17 led the way for men’s lacrosse (5-5, 2-4 in the NESCAC) on Saturday with seven goals and three assists, but his performance was not enough, as Williams fell to Wesleyan 19-17 at home.

Fahey turned in a sizzling performance for Williams, scoring three goals. The first came at 11:14, after co-captain Peter Crane ’16 forced a turnover to start a fast break. The second goal came at 1:34 in the quarter, when Fahey picked up a rebound and snuck it in the goal.

Fahey’s third goal was the most spectacular; after Jack Lauroesch ’16 fired a shot off the post with four seconds left in the quarter, Fahey got the ball and drove by his man to score with just 0.3 seconds left in the quarter to tie the score at 4-4.

In the second quarter, Williams started with a two-goal run with goals with both Lauroesch and Thomas Fowler ’17 scoring. However, Wesleyan kept things close, tying the score again with a two-goal run of their own.

The opponents traded goals for the next four points on the board. First, Fahey scored for the Ephs on a scalding attack that was all-too-quickly followed by a goal from Niall Devaney of the Cardinals. Fahey scored again for the men on a fast break after a Williams faceoff win, but this goal was again matched by one from Wesleyan. In the remainder of the quarter, Wesleyan was able to take the lead, scoring two goals to Williams’s one to secure a 10-9 lead going into the second half.

In the second half, Wesleyan took control early, scoring the first two goals of the period, one of which came after a Williams penalty. However, while Williams was a man down, Crane got a goal back, but the men ultimately conceded another one to Wesleyan as well. At 4:34 Williams had a big momentum-changing play when Khary Dennis ’16 forced a turnover on a Wesleyan clear attempt and took the ball down on a fast break, passing to Fahey, who scored. Williams won the following faceoff and James McFarland ’18 scored another for the Ephs. Although the team lost the ensuing faceoff, co-captain Ryan Hamilton ’16 forced a turnover and cleared the ball himself, dodging through four Wesleyan defenders.

With a three goal run to start the fourth quarter, the Cardinals opened up a seemingly unassailable four-goal lead. Then, Fahey fired a shot from the side of the net and missed wide, but Fowler caught the shot right by the crease and just slipped the ball into the net. Williams then won the faceoff and Riley Hoffman ’17 scored another for the Ephs.

With 6:32 left, Hamilton got a 2-minute non-releasable penalty for targeting the head but the Ephs, despite being a man down, were able to prevent the Cardinals from capitalizing on the opportunity. Fahey scored another goal in an attempt to kickstart a late comeback effort at 3:47.

Wesleyan won the following faceoff and though they weren’t able to score, they maintained possession until 1:32. Wesleyan then forced a Williams turnover on the clear attempt and got the ball back with a two-goal lead at 1:07. Wesleyan maintained possession for the remainder of the game to win 19-17.The Ephs were led by Michael Fahey, who had seven goals and three assists. Harry Stanton had five goals for the Cardinals.

The loss to Wesleyan followed a tough conference loss against nationally-ranked Tufts, who defeated the men 22-15 on April 6. In that contest, the third-ranked Jumbos took the game despite strong performances from several Ephs, including Lauroesch, who scored four goals.

“While this past week we had two tough losses to Tufts and Wesleyan, it has helped us narrow our focus on what we need to work on for the second half of the season,” co-captain Tanner Maclvor ’16 said. “We know that we have a great team and success is within our reach.  Now the team is just excited to get back out on the field and to host Hamilton this week.”

Scores from the men’s game against Hamilton on Tuesday came in too late to report. The team’s next game is this Saturday at 1 p.m., when the men will play Colby at home.

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