To the Founders and Friends of Fairfield Lacrosse-The Loyola Greyhounds used a 5 goal run in the first period to spark a 5-1 lead that the Fairfield Stags could not cover on the Greyhounds way to a 13-7 final score. The game was played in Baltimore, MD on Loyola’s campus in a 54 degree sunny afternoon before a crowd of 2,100 plus fans.
The Stags’ Junior FOGO Michael Roe faced Loyola’s Brendon Donovan in the opening face off circle. Roe wins the initial face off and his wing Senior Co-Captain Midfielder Marshall Johnson getting to the ground ball. The Stags work their offense and at 13:52 Sophomore Attack Tristian Sperry make the first shot of the day that is saved by Loyola’s Goal Keeper Jack Runkel makes the save. The Greyhounds’ Joe Fletcher gets the ground ball and starts a good clear for Loyola. After a minute of working their offense, Davis Butts for Loyola takes a shot that Junior Goal Keeper Jack Murphy saves. Murphy starts the clear. Stags offense probes the Greyhounds defense and after one minute they open up. First Senior Co-Captain Midfielder Sam Snow shoots wide and the Stags back up. Sperry takes another shot and his shot goes wide. Again the Stags retain the ball. Johnson gets the ball and at 10:32 he scores unassisted to give Fairfield a 1-0 lead. Roe and Donovan square off at the X and Donovan wins with his wing Kyle Duffy getting the ground ball. The Greyhounds are patient and at 9:15 Patrick Fanshaw takes a shot that Murphy saves. A 30 second pushing penalty is called on Sophomore D Middie Bryan Barry and the Greyhounds send their extra man unit out on the field. Loyola’s Mike Sawyer takes a wide shot and they retain the ball. With the penalty almost over, Loyola’s Kevin Ryan scores a man up goal and ties the game at 1-1 with 8:44 showing on the clock. Harry Kutner gets credit for the assist on the goal. Donovan beats Roe on the second straight face off and wing Donovan gets the ground ball. He passes the ball to Scott Ratliff who runs down the field and scores unassisted with only 9 seconds coming off the clock for a 2-1 lead for Loyola to continue on its five goal run. Roe takes Donovan this time on the face off and Johnson gets the ground ball. The Stags offense works hard but the Greyhounds have a caused turnover but Loyola turns the ball over right away. Super Frosh Middie TJ Neubauer gets the ground ball and starts a good clear for Fairfield. The Stags work the ball for 30 seconds but turn the ball over back to Loyola who clears. The Greyhounds’ Nikko Pontrello takes a wide shot and they back up the shot. With 6:27 on the clock, Chris Layne scores an unassisted goal to push the lead to 3-1. Coach Copelan takes a time out to break the Loyola momentum. Donovan now beats Roe in the face off circle and Donovan gets the ground ball. Butts takes a wide shot and then Sean O’Sullivan hits a post and the Stags get the ball. With 4:40 left in the first period, Johnson takes a wide shot and Snow gets the loose ground ball. Snow takes a shot that goes wide. Loyola is closest to the ball when it goes out of bounds Their clear is good and the Greyhounds work the ball around the wheel. Justin Ward gets a pass and scores unassisted at 3:11 to give Loyola a 4-1 lead. Roe beats Donovan and he gets the ground ball. Fairfield works the ball but the Greyhounds create a caused turnover and Runkel picks up the ground ball and starts the clear. Working the ball quickly down the field, Ward again gets the ball and scores his second unassisted goal in a row for a 5-1 Loyola lead with 2:12 left in the period. Roe gets the best of Donovan and Barry playing the wing gets the loose ground ball. Fairfield takes it time on offense and Sophomore Attack Nick Guida gets a loose ground ball to keep the Stags on the attack. He passes to Sophomore Midfield Drew Federico who scores unassisted with 40 seconds left in the period to cut the Greyhounds lead to 5-2. Loyola gets the face off when the officials call a violation on Roe. The Greyhounds strike quickly with Pontrello hitting Ratliff with a pass who puts it home. Loyola leads 6-2 with 23 seconds left in the first period. Roe wins the face off beating Donovan and Roe gets the ground ball. The period ends before the Stags can get a shot with Loyola having a 6-2 lead after one period.
The second period starts and Roe wins both the face off and the ground ball. He starts the Fairfield attack and after trying to find a weak spot in the Greyhound defense, Super Soph Middie Colin McLinden takes a shot that goes high. Junior Attack Jordan Greenfield gets the ground ball and the Stags remain on offense. With 13:15 on the clock, Junior Middie Eric Warden shot flies over the cage. Loyola gets the ball and makes a successful clear. The Greyhounds’ Butts sends a shot wide with Loyola retaining the ball. At 12:09, O’Sullivan dodges and scores unassisted to make the score 7-2 in Loyola’s favor. The Greyhounds send out a new face off man to take on Roe, Blake Burkhart. Burkhart wins the first battle and his wing Ratliff gets the ground ball. Thirty seconds in the Loyola attack, Patrick Fenshaw shoots and Murphy makes the save. Johnson gets the rebound ground ball and starts the clear. Warden takes a shot at 9:40 and beats Runkel. Warden’s goal is unassisted and cuts the Loyola lead to 7-3. Burkhart again beats Roe on the face off and Josh Logan playing the wing picks up the ground ball. Ratliff scores unassisted to give Loyola a 8-3 lead with 9:12 remaining in the first half. Coach Copelan sends out Sophomore FOGO Lou DiGiacomo to take on Burkhart at the X. DiGiacomo wins his first draw with Johnson on the wing getting the ground ball. The Stags offense knows they have to score. First Snow takes a shot that is blocked and then 30 seconds later Federico’s shot is also blocked. In the subsequent play, Loyola gets possession and the officials can now assess a 30 second holding penalty on Reid Acton to give Fairfield an extra man opportunity. First Sophomore Attack Nick Guida takes a high shot and then with both teamsare at even strength. Fairfield retains the ball. Next Greenfield takes a shot that is blocked. McLinden gets to the ground ball and at 6:17 remaining in the period the officials call a 30 shot clock warning on the Stags. At the 6:00 minute mark, Greenfield’s shot goes wide and Sperry gets the ground ball. He passes to Snow who puts his shot wide. Loyola finally gets the ball back and they have a good clear. O’Sullivan takes a shot that Murphy saves after the Greyhounds had worked the ball around. The Stags’ Junior D Middie Shawn Honovich takes the ball down the field and fires a shot wide. Loyola calls time out to reset their defense at 4:59. The Stags restart and the officials call another 30 second shot warning with 3:55 on the clock. Snow goes to the cage and scores unassisted at 3:46. This cuts the lead to 8-4. Both Roe and Burkhart are in the face off circle. Roe wins and gets to the ground ball. Fairfield needs a goal and the offense is working hard to find a way to beat Runkel. Warden takes a shot but Runkel makes the save and starts the clear. Junior Long Pole Defender Toby Armour causes Loyola’s Pontello to turn the ball over at 1:43. Armour gets the ground ball and starts the clear. Coach Copelan calls his second timeout of the half with 1:24 left in the half. Fairfield restarts but the Stags turnover the ball and Loyola’s Frazier gets the ground ball and starts the clear. With 56 seconds left in the half, Loyola’s Hawkins scores unassisted to push the Loyola lead to 9-4. Roe beats Burkhart at the face off circle with Roe getting the ground ball. The Stags works the attack for 30 seconds but turn the ball over. Loyola’s coach calls his second time out with 11 seconds later. Butts sends a shot high 5 seconds remaining and Loyola’s Sawyer turns the ball over. The period ends with the Greyhounds leading 9-4.
Donovan rejoins Roe in the face off circle to start the second half with Roe getting another win and his wing Johnson picks up the ground ball. The Stags works the ball for a minute when Neubauer takes a wide shot. Loyola’s Pat Laconi is called for a 30 second holding penalty and the Stags’ EMO unit makes it second appearance of the day at 13:51 of the third period. The EMO unit work the ball and at 13:38 Greenfield scores a man up goal with Snow getting an assist. Loyola now has a 9-5 lead. Roe and Donovan continue their face off battle with Roe winning both the face off and ground ball. The Stags work the offense for the next 40 seconds and then turn the ball over. Loyola clears and Ratliff scores his fourth goal of the day with Pat Laconi getting an assist at 12:44. Loyola increases their lead to 10-5. Roe and Donovan come out the midfield but the officials call a violation on Donovan. The Stags pick up the ball and start their offense. Forty seconds into the offensive effort, Loyola has a caused turnover and Hawkins picks up the ground ball and starts the clear. In no rush, Loyola’s offense takes it time and a minute later with 10:53 remaining in the third period, Loyola’s Sawyer gets a goal with an assist from Ward. The Greyhounds now have a 11-5 lead. Burkhard now comes back to face Roe at the X and the officials call a violation on Burkhard. The Stags work the ball downfield quickly and Warden scores unassisted to cut the Loyola to 11-6 with 10:18 left on the clock. Roe beats Burkhard at the X and Roe gets the ground ball. For the next seven minute both team trade the ball and take shots that do not go in. At 3:49, the Greyhounds’ Hawkins gets a 30 second pushing penalty. The Fairfield extra man unit works to cut the Loyola lead. The extra man opportunity ends and 2 seconds later Freshman Attack Mikey Gulasey shoots and hits the post! Loyola wins the race to the ball and clear the ball. The Greyhounds take 90 seconds off the clock and Sawyer scores unassisted with 1:29 remaining in the third period to up the Loyola lead to 12-6. Roe once again beats Donovan at the X and Roe again wins the ground ball. Stags clear and try to score for the next minute but with 33 seconds left in the period, Loyola has a caused turnover. Fletcher gets the ground ball for the Greyhounds and Fletcher passes to Hawkins who works his way to the cage and score unassisted with 18 seconds remaining on the clock. Loyola now leads 13-6. Roe beats Donovan at the face off circle and Johnson gets the ground ball. Johnson goes the cage immediately and his shot with 8 seconds is saved by Runkel. He makes a clear and Loyola’s Sawyer puts a shot on net as the clock expires with Murphy making that same. Loyola now leads 13-6.
Roe and Burkhart battle to start the fourth quarter and Burkhart wins with Ratliff now on the wing getting the ground ball. The fourth quarter sees only one illegal procedure penalty for 30 seconds by Federico at 10:24. Neither team can score until Sperry gets a goal unassisted at 1:56 left in the game to make the final score 13-7.
Loyola outshot the Stags by a 38 to 33 margin. Fairfield had 9 saves in goal and Loyola had seven saves. The Stags won the ground ball game getting to 34 gbs while the Greyhounds snagged 20. While Fairfield only committed 13 turnovers, Loyola has just 8 turnovers. The Stags won the face off battle taking 17 of 24 face offs and Loyola only won 7 of 24 face offs. Loyola was 20 of 20 in its clears and Fairfield has an excellent 18 of 19 successful clears. Both teams had one extra man goal with Fairfield have 3 chances and was man up twice.
Stars of the game: Eric Warden lead the Stags in scoring with 2 goals and one ground ball. Marshall Johnson was credited with 7 ground balls. Michael Roe was 15 of 22 in the face off circle returning to his 2012 form and he had 9 ground balls. Jordan Greenfield had one goal and two ground balls. On defense Toby Armour and Dan Niebler each had one caused turnover. Leading the Greyhounds was Scott Ratliff with four goals and three ground balls. Josh Hawkins had two goals and two ground balls. Mike Sawyer and Justin Ward each had two goals. Joe Fletcher was credited with three ground balls.
The Stags return to action on Saturday April 13th at home against ECAC opponent Air Force . The game will be played on Lessing Field and starts after the women’s game versus Canisius. Saturday will also be Senior Day and all the seniors will be honored in a ceremony before the game.