Spartans Control Western New England, Advance to NCAA Tournament Third Round

Photo courtesy of Ryan Griffith
Photo courtesy of Ryan Griffith

YORK, Pa. – The York College men's lacrosse team overcame a slow start and pulled away from Western New England University 15-7 in the second round of the NCAA Tournament on Wednesday evening at Kinsley Field. Jake Hvazda made it happen for the Spartans, scoring three goals and adding an assist, while 10 players in the Green and White tallied goals on the afternoon. York will advance to take on Amherst College in the third round.

NCAA Tournament Second Round

Final Score: #2 York 15, Western New England 7

Records: #2 York 18-2, Western New England 13-7

Shots: York 50, Western New England 20

Shots on Goal: York 31, Western New England 12

Saves: York 5, Western New England 16

Face offs Won: York 13, Western New England 12

Ground Balls: York 41, Western New England 30

Turnovers: York 13, Western New England 20

Caused Turnovers: York 10, Western New England 6

Man Up: York 2-for-3, Western New England 2-for-2

Penalties: York 3-for-2:00, Western New England 3-for-2:00

Clears: York 17-for-19, Western New England 17-for-20

How it Happened:

• The Golden Bears scored twice in the first minute to jump out to a 2-0 lead, the second one coming straight off a face off from Hunter Cocks. York cut the deficit in half quickly when Jake Hvazda fed Ryan Cook for the goal with 12:24 to play in the first. Just over a minute later, Gunnar Reynolds absolutely ripped a shot to tie it up from the right side. After the four quick goals to open proceedings, both teams were held scoreless for nearly eight minutes when Western New England took advantage of an extra man opportunity to go up 3-2 with 3:38 to play. Hunter Davis passed to Matt Whitcher to level the game up again before the end of the first quarter.

• Whitcher got things rolling in the second quarter, threading a pass to Hvazda, who was just outside of the crease to give the Green and White its first lead of the game at 4-3. York continued to rack up possessions despite only winning four of the 12 face offs in the first half by causing turnovers on the defensive end. At the half, Western New England turned it over 11 times, creating plenty of possessions for the Spartans. Cook, when York was moving the ball side to side, found Dillon Hannah, who sent a rocket into the top corner from long distance, extending the lead. Just 1:21 later, The Spartans were up 6-3 when Dylan Wolf wrapped around the net and bounced one through the goalie's legs. The Golden Bears cut it to 6-4 in the final minute of the half, but York had secured both the lead and the momentum heading into the break.

• It was more of the same in the third quarter after the Spartans grabbed the first two goals of the half from Davis and Reynolds to make it 8-4. Davis' goal came off a rebound in front of the net that he scooped and shot, while Reynolds' goal was another powerhouse, similar to his first. Western New England fought back, though, and scored twice in less than two minutes to make it 8-6 with less than four minutes to play in the third. That would be the closest it would get, however, as Davis, Thomas Pfeiffer and Hvazda each scored before the end of the third, making it 11-6.

Brad Casale, Hvazda, Shane Brookhart and Pfeiffer all notched goals in the fourth, to help solidify  a 15-7 victory in the second round. Casale's was especially notable as he wiggled through a slew of defenders and took a shot as he was falling to his knees.

Spartan Leaders:

Jake Hvazda: 3 goals, 1 assist, 4 shots, 3 ground balls

Hunter Davis: 2 goals, 1 assist, 4 shots, 3 ground balls

Thomas Pfeiffer: 2 goals, 1 assist, 6 shots, 4 ground balls

Golden Bear Leaders:

Mikey Wood: 2 goals, 3 shots, 1 caused turnover

Jared Ward: 2 goals, 5 shots, 2 ground balls

Goalie Comparison:

Landry Marshall (YCP): 59:20 minutes played, 6 goals against, 5 saves (W, 18-2)

Jacob Laubner (YCP): 0:40 minutes played, 1 goal against, 0 saves

Steven Kerr (WNE): 59:27 minutes played, 15 goals against, 16 saves (L, 11-6)

Sean McCusker (WNE): 0:33 minutes played, 0 goals against, 0 saves

Game Notes:

York is making its fourth appearance in the NCAA Tournament, having clinched a berth in 2014, 2016 and 2017 … the Spartans are now 5-3 all-time … it has scored 78 goals and allowed 51 … York set a new NCAA Tournament-high of 15 goals in a game … the meeting was the first between the Spartans and the Golden Bears … Jake Hvazda has now scored in each of the last five games and has at least a point in all 19 games he's played in … Thomas Pfeiffer matches the school record for points in a season with 82, set by Brendan McGrath last year.

Up Next

York will travel to Amherst College to take on the Mammoths on Saturday in the third round of the NCAA Tournament. Amherst defeated Keene St. 24-7 on Wednesday.