#10 Warriors Suffer First Defeat to Defending NAIA Champions
WALESKA, Ga. (March 8, 2023) – Facing its toughest test of the season so far, the Webber International University men’s lacrosse team traveled to Georgia for a battle with the defending NAIA Champions, No. 1 Reinhardt University. It was a tightly contested game, but a late goal by the Eagles handed the Warriors their first defeat of the season.
The Eagles (7-1 overall) outnumbered the Warriors (7-1) 43-32 in total shots and had a slight advantage on face-offs, 18-14.
Webber recorded the first two goals of the game thanks to Chase Jackson who scored the first goal and assisted another to Cade McCarron a minute later. Despite taking an early 2-0 lead, Reinhardt responded by scoring four in a row over a five-minute span.
Goals from Christian Tapia and Dillon Ziemba tied the game up at 4-4 with just over two minutes left in the quarter. The Eagles then scored twice more to end the first, regaining their lead at 6-4.
The Warriors netted the first goal of the new quarter after just 30 seconds to pull back within one. However, the Eagles once again caught fire and scored three –straight to extend their lead to four. Reinhardt found itself with the advantage as it held a 10-7 lead at halftime.
Webber outscored the Eagles for the first time in the third quarter, 3-2, with goals from Jeremiah Loo, Blake Nelson and Jackson. It would be Jackson’s third goal of the game, which cut the deficit to just two heading into the final quarter.
The momentum remained in favor of the Warriors as a man-up goal from Loo followed by another score from Nick Sheaffer leveled the game at 12. Reinhardt responded with back-to-back goals, but Webber did not back down. Another Jackson solo-goal was followed by Houston Finlayson’s first of the game to tie things up yet again. The game continued locked at 14-14 until the Eagles scored with one minute remaining. The Warriors were unable to score in the final minute to force overtime.
Jackson led the way offensively as he tallied four goals and three assists for seven points. He also tied with several others for the most ground balls with three. McCarron totaled four points after picking up two goals and two assists. Loo added two goals and an assist while Sheaffer ended with two goals and a ground ball.
Hunter Scott was 14-of-31 on face offs and tied with Jackson with three ground balls. Alex Cordero spent over 54 minutes in the cage, tallying a season-high 10 saves.
The Warriors remain in Georgia as they will now take on Lawrence Tech University on Thursday, March 9th at Hillgrove High School at 1 p.m.