Big Third Quarter Lifts Spartans over Wesley in CAC Playoffs
DOVER, DE - The York College men's lacrosse team captured a 12-9 Capital Athletic Conference tournament first-round victory over Wesley College Monday afternoon in Dover, Del. The Spartans improve to 9-6 on the season while the Wolverines fall to 8-7.
York, which was awarded the fifth seed on a tiebreaker between themselves, Wesley, and Mary Washington, fell behind the Wolverines 1-0 only 2:07 into the first-round tilt. The Spartans would not trail for long however, as senior long-stick midfielder Mike Stokes (Ellicott City, Md./Mt. Hebron) put his squad on the board only 53 seconds later on an assist from Nick Carlson (Fallston, Md./Fallston). The green and white would take the lead with 4:38 remaining in the opening frame on a Chris Norman (Annapolis, Md./Broadneck) tally.
Josh Gamble (Easton, Md./Easton) continued his torrid pace in the scoring category as he put the Spartans up by two merely 41 seconds into the second quarter. A feed from Steve Mersinger (Westminster, Md./Westminster) helped Gamble put away York's third goal of the game.
With the score holding at 3-1 in favor of the visitors, the sides would trade the next six scores, spilling over to the third quarter. Kyle Henninger's (Millers, Md./Hereford) 22nd goal of the season with 14:30 left in the third was the last of the six and gave the Spartans the 6-4 lead.
The third quarter proved to be quite the offensive frame for the Spartans as they would tally five times over the 15 minutes, including Henninger's notch. Gamble would quickly follow Henninger, as the freshman scored his second of the game just 38 seconds later on an assist from the senior. Henninger would record another assist with 11:53 remaining in the stanza on a Chris Chappelle (Stevensville, Md./Chesapeake) goal. Chappelle's 12th goal of his senior campaign gave York an 8-4 advantage.
Wesley's Luke Moeller cut the lead to 8-5 on a man-up goal with 11:09 left in the third. York's Norman and John Gaeta (Bel Air, Md./Archbishop Curley) proceeded to sandwich scores around a Shane Lynch tally to close out the very offensive third period. At the end of 45 minutes of CAC action, York led 10-6.
The fourth frame ended much like its predecessor, as Carlson put the Spartans on the board again, their eleventh goal of the game, with 11:05 to play.
Wesley valiantly battled back with a pair of goals to drop the Spartan lead to 11-8 with 9:26 showing on the game clock. Moeller registered his second of the contest before Brad Smith scored Wesley's eighth.
Gamble then drove home the final nail with only 4:25 left to play. Gamble's hat trick gives the Easton, Md. native 14 goals on the season.
Wesley's Smith finished the game's scoring as he notched his third of the contest with 3:18 to play. The York defense would hold strong for the remainder and take home the 12-9 victory.
Gamble's trio of scores paced the Spartan offense on the day, while seven other Spartans recorded at least one score. Steve Roy (Feasterville, Pa./Archbishop Wood) and Norman each tallied twice, while Henninger posted a goal and a pair of assists. Mersinger chipped in with an assist and once again led the Spartans in ground balls with seven while he also caused three turnovers. Rob Marine (Bel Air, Md./Bel Air) also posted a strong game for the green and white recording an assist and three caused turnovers. Ryan McNicholas (Fallston, Md./Fallston) added five ground balls to York's total.
Wesley's Smith paced the Wolverine offense with three goals, while Moeller and Dan Skeels each score twice. Nick Pisacano registered a goal and two assists as Kirk Waldie also chipped in with a pair of helpers while causing a game-high five turnovers. Skeels was the contest's high man in ground balls with eight.
Matt Keeler (Morton, Pa./Ridley) nabs the win in goal for the green and white registering 15 saves in his 60 minutes of work. Jim McCleaft takes the loss as he made seven stops.
The Spartans move on to the semi-final round of the CAC tournament. York is scheduled to travel to Salisbury, Md. to take on the Sea Gulls Thursday, April 17, at 4:00 pm.
Mike Stokes photo courtesy of Steve Doemland