Cortland, NY (WBNG Binghamton)
The nationally third-ranked Cortland men's lacrosse team broke open a close game with seven consecutive goals over a nine minute, 47 second span in the third quarter and went on to defeat 14th-ranked RIT, 15-7, Wednesday afternoon in the NCAA Div. III Quarterfinals at the SUNY Cortland Stadium Complex. The Red Dragons improved to 17-2 with their 16th win in a row and host fifth-ranked Tufts, an 11-9 winner versus Middlebury, in the national semifinals, Sunday, May 23, at a time to be determined. The Tigers' concluded their season at 14-6.
Junior Chris DeLuca (Sayville) led Cortland with five goals and 10 ground balls. Junior Jay DiStefano (Huntington/Harborfields) became the fifth Cortland player to surpass 100 career points this season with two goals and one assist. Senior Brandon Misiaszek (New Hartford) scored twice, while sophomore Mike Tota (Webster/Webster Schroeder) added a goal and two assists.
Senior Brian Krol (Niskayuna), juniors Pat Hayes (Mastic/Eastport South Manor) and Neal Hopps (Akwesasne/Massena) and sophomore Greg Wright (Irondequoit) each recorded a goal and an assist. Sophomore Jack Kennedy (Camillus/West Genesee) scored once and junior Zack Mulvaney (Deferiet/Carthage) contributed two assists. Freshman goalie Mike Kaminski (Sayville) made six saves in running his record to 17-2 on the season.
Senior Sean Gillies (Oakville, ON/Albany Academy) led the Tigers with three goals and an assist. Senior David Burke (Fairport) had a goal and an assist, while juniors Iric Bressler (Stafford, VA/North Stafford), Adam Vlassis (Syracuse/East Syracuse-Minoa) and Jordan MacIntosh (Oakville, ON/Holy Trinity) netted one goal apiece. Five different players each chipped in with an assist. Junior goalie Robert Tonnessen (Ridgefield, CT) registered 10 saves.
The game remainied close throughout the first half with the largest lead being two goals. Bressler gave RIT its only lead of the game with an unassisted effort at 13:03 of the first quarter. Cortland went up, 3-1, at the end of the first quarter as DiStefano, Krol and DeLuca each scored. The teams then traded the next six goals in the game and Cortland led 6-4 at the half.
DeLuca tallied his third of the game at 13:35 of the third quarter and Misiaszek pushed the Red Dragons' lead to 8-4 at the 7:37 mark. Gillies closed the scoring in the quarter at 2:33, and the Tigers trailed 8-5 heading into the final 15 minutes of play. Gillies pulled RIT to within 8-6 just six seconds into the fourth after the Tigers won the faceoff. The next seven goals, however, belonged to the Red Dragons as DeLuca started the run with back-to-back goals just over a minute apart. By the time the scoring binge ended, Cortland led 15-6 with only 3:11 remaining in the game. Burke concluded the scoring for RIT with a man-up goal at 40 seconds.
Cortland out shot RIT, 46-29, and held a 41-28 advantage in ground balls. Faceoffs were nearly even in the game with Cortland winning 14-of-26. The Red Dragons converted 3-of-4 man-up chances, and the Tigers were 1-for-2.