FORT MILL, S.C. – The Jacksonville University men’s lacrosse team (5-4) found itself in a shootout with Robert Morris (4-5) at the Crown Lacrosse Classic in Fort Mill, S.C. on Saturday afternoon ultimately dropping a heartbreaker, 16-15.
The Dolphins held a lead at the close of each of the first three quarters but were stifled for just two goals in the fourth as Robert Morris stormed back with four to claim the victory. Matt Stagnitta and Evan Tyler paced the effort on offense, each contributing five points. Stagnitta canned four goals and handed out an assist while Tyler contributed three goals and a pair of assists. Jeremy Winston scored three times while Nathan Kapp, Troy Hettinger, Jack Dolan, Tucker Garrity and Immanuel Brown all scored once. Tom Heed dished out two assists.
The Dolphins were snakebit by turnovers in this one, giving away 14 while causing just one. Robert Morris ended the game with nine total. Kapp did his part in the circle, winning 21 of 32 faceoffs and picking up nine ground balls but he had several turnovers of his own. Jordan Young picked up five ground balls and Zack Deaken grabbed four. Jason Yoquinto made 12 more saves in goal.
“Today is obviously a heartbreaker loss against a very talented RMU team,” head coach John Galloway said. “Ultimately, the turnover bug continued to bite us, and we just couldn’t find that last answer to tie the game up. Offensively, Matt Stagnitta and Evan Tyler led the way. I thought Jason had another big day and goal, but we are asking too much of him. To grow as a team this spring, we have to be willing to become great at the small and boring details. When we learn to take care of that, we could be a tough team to beat.”
Jacksonville was first on the board, jumping out to a two-goal lead with scores from Stagnitta and Dolan. The lead grew to 4-1 before Robert Morris got the last word in the first, leaving JU with a 4-2 lead after one.
The second quarter produced all of the fireworks with a total of 12 combined goals. RMU got three of the first four followed by three straight following a Stagnitta run stopper at the 10:41 mark. The two sides split the last four goals in the second quarter. Tucker Garrity and Troy Hettinger collected the tallies down the stretch.
The Dolphins scored the first five goals of the third quarter to move ahead 13-10 but RMU chipped away and tied the game with 11:01 to go in the game as part of a five-score run that put JU in a 15-13 hole. Tyler and Winston scored the knot this one at 15 with just short of four minutes to play but an RMU goal with 3:36 to go proved to be the decider.
Jacksonville had a chance with the ball coming out of a timeout with less than a minute to play, but a costly turnover proved to be the final nail.
Jacksonville returns home to resume SoCon play next weekend opposite Air Force. The game will start at 12 p.m. and will air on CBS Sports Network later that day at 5:30 p.m.