BU MLAX downed by Cornell

By wbng sports

February 26, 2013 Updated Feb 26, 2013 at 10:08 PM EDT

Ithaca, NY (WBNG Binghamton)

Binghamton (0-2) lost to fifth ranked Cornell 11-6 late Tuesday afternoon from Schoellkopf Field. The Big Red had seven different scorers, led by senior all-american Rob Pannell’s three goals and one assist. Sophomore attack Tucker Nelson tallied three goals in the losing effort for Binghamton.

Despite a 19-save performance from junior goalie Max Schefler, Cornell made their presence felt on the offensive side of the ball. The Big Red outshot BU 58-43 and were dominant on the faceoff winning 18-of-21 attempts.

“I thought our guys played extremely hard all game and I’m proud of the way we competed as a whole,” head coach Scott Nelson said. “We had difficulty controlling the faceoff tonight, which made it tough on us. Credit their defense, they didn’t give us many good looks; especially in the first half.”

In the opening frame, Cornell jumped out to a three-goal advantage in large part to the play of Pannell. The senior had a part in all three goals, including an assist to fellow all-american and defender Jason Noble for the score with just over three minutes remaining in the first quarter. After an interference penalty on Cornell, Binghamton finally got on the board. With under twenty seconds left, sophomore midfielder J.T. Hauck found the aforementioned Nelson on the left flank. Nelson fired a shot over the goalies left shoulder and into the upper right corner of the netting.

Down 3-1 heading into the second, Binghamton found themselves retreating on defense again after Cornell’s fifth straight faceoff win. The Big Red scored just 54 seconds into the quarter, boosting their lead to three. The Big Red went on to score two more goals in the second and frustrated the Bearcat offense. Against a tenacious defense, the Bearcats found little room to maneuver and had a host of contested and blocked shots. Cornell went on to keep the 6-1 lead into half, led by nine saves from senior goalie A.J. Fiore.

Three minutes into the second half, junior midfielder Michael Antinozzi cut into the Big Red’s lead. Antinozzi received a pass from fellow midfielder Tyler Perrelle on the man-up, scoring his fourth goal of the season. After a Cornell goal, the Bearcats did damage on the man-up once again. This time, great ball movement from the right side of the field to the left found Nelson heaving a shot past Fiore to put Binghamton down 7-3 with under seven minutes left in the third.

The four-goal deficit would be the closest BU would get on the game as the hosts started to pull away. The Ivy League favorites scored four unanswered goals that bridged between the third and fourth quarters to take an 11-3 lead; their largest of the game. BU scored three goals late in the fourth, but the deficit was too much in the end.

“This was a very good experience for us playing a top-5 nationally ranked team,” Nelson explained. “A lot of our freshmen got a good amount of time out there tonight. I was impressed with their play and believe we have a lot of good young talent that will contribute.”

Alongside T. Nelson and Antinozzi, juniors Brandon Planck and Kelly Dongian scored their first goals of the season. Three players tallied five ground balls; including Schefler, Alex Doerflein and Matt Springer. The Bearcats lost the ground ball battle on the evening 44-27.

Binghamton hosts Hobart in their season opener this Saturday at the Bearcats Sports Complex turf field. The game begins at 1 p.m. as BU looks to avenge a 15-10 loss to the Statesmen a season ago.

(Courtesy: BU Athletics)

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