via college press releases
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – The Palm Beach Atlantic men’s lacrosse team faced off with the Saint Leo Lions for the second time in three days this afternoon. After a late comeback came short on Tuesday, the Sailfish looked the better, more energetic side for most of the game today as they got revenge over the Lions 14-10 at the RAC.
The Lions got on the board first when they scored at the 13:18 mark in the opening quarter. After another eight minutes without either side being able to create a great scoring chance, the Lions doubled their lead 2-0. The Sailfish were able to answer as they scored two goals in quick succession when Henry Sloyan found the back of the net with 2:30 remaining in the quarter and Ben Justice score 15 seconds later to tie the game.
The stats were nearly identical in the opening half as Zack Figura and Austin Evans added goals for the ‘Fish in the second quarter. The Lions took 18 shots in the first half while the Sailfish took 17 as Sailfish goalie Gerrit Kurtycz recorded six first-half saves. PBA’s defense was solid gaining possession back for their attackers as they forced 17 Saint Leo turnovers while the Sailfish committed just 10 in the first half. Noah McKoeun held his own in the faceoff circle as he won 3-of-9 in the first half as the sides went into the locker room tied 4-4.
Figura scored his second goal of the game to kick off the second half for PBA and give the ‘Fish their first lead of the game. Saint Leo answered with their biggest run of the game scoring four goals in a three-minute stretch midway through the third quarter to take an 8-5 lead. Coach Stephen Tempone took a timeout and after the break, the Sailfish looked like a new side and completely took over the game. PBA would score four goals to close out the third quarter by Noah McKoeun, Hunter Hopman, Austin Evans, and Christopher Tucker as PBA took a 9-8 lead after the third.
The Sailfish run wasn’t done when the new quarter began as they rode the momentum to open the fourth and put the game away. Henry Sloyan lost his defender on an isolation to score his second, and Ben Justice found the back of the net to cap a 6-0 Sailfish run over 11 minutes of play. During that time, Kurtycz was great in front of goal for PBA as he made eight of his 14 saves in the second half to allow the Sailfish lead to grow. Saint Leo would cut the lead to 11-9 with eight minutes remaining, but the Sailfish wouldn’t be denied as Hunter Sheffield scored his first PBA goal followed by goals from Austin Evans and Zack Figura that gave them both a hat-trick on the afternoon. PBA ran away in the second half on their way to their first victory of the all SSC opponent season and won 14-10.
The Sailfish defenders were solid as a group as Teagan Hersh and Harrison Wood made up for the limited due to injury Alex Aken. Gunner Gebelein once again led the Sailfish in ground balls with seven and caused turnovers with five. Evans added three assists to go along with his three goals and Justice dished out two to go with his pair of goals as the PBA offense scored a season-high 14 goals.
The game marked the last scheduled home date of the season for the Sailfish. They still have one game remaining on the schedule as they go to Rollins on May 1 looking to carry over their best performance of the year and make good on a 10-5 loss to the Tars earlier in the year.
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – The Saint Leo men’s lacrosse team fell 14-10 at Palm Beach Atlantic in a non-conference game on Thursday in West Palm Beach, Fla. Tied at four at halftime, the Sailfish escaped the Lions on a six-goal second-half run.
Devin Sparks brought home a hat trick while Tyler Eames also contributed three points with a pair of goals and an assist. Saint Leo won several box score battles including shots taken, saves, faceoffs, and went 16-for-16 in clears but was not able to reel in the Sailfish.
Palm Beach Atlantic: 1-6, 0-5 SSC
Saint Leo: 3-4, 3-2 SSC
How it Happened
Saint Leo jumped ahead by two but was matched by PBA. Sparks netted his first of the evening to reclaim the lead for Saint Leo at the end of the first, 3-2. Gino Riforgiato opened the second quarter extending the lead to two, assisted by Ryan Marek. The Sailfish fought back and matched the Lions again, leveling the game at four at the halftime break.
PBA notched the first lead change in the 13th minute of the third quarter. Down 5-4, the Saint Leo offense started rocking and rolling, translating to a four-goal run, with a pair of goals coming from Eames. The offensive burst recorded the Lions’ largest lead of the night at 8-5 with 5:58 left in third.
PBA wrapped up the third quarter on a four-goal run to take back the lead, 9-8. The hosts added to their streak with two more goals in the opening minutes of the fourth quarter. Sparks put a stop to PBA’s run with his third goal of the night, assisted by Eames. With the game within two goals at 11-9, the Sailfish pieced together three consecutive goals in the last five minutes. Marek netted one last goal for the Lions, assisted by Justin Williams but there would not be enough time left on the clock to add to his efforts.
Following a series of schedule changes, Saint Leo will return to action on Sunday, April 25 at 3 p.m. on the road at Lynn. The Lions and Fighting Knights last met on April 17 in a conference game in Saint Leo, Fla. where the Fighting Knights escaped the Lions, 11-10.
For the latest news, updates, and information on the Saint Leo men’s lacrosse team, be sure to visit SaintLeoLions.com. Fans can also stay up-to-date on the latest Lions news by following Saint Leo Athletics on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.