Sports

Men’s lacrosse struggles to contain Bulldog offense in loss

Bruno falls to first-place Yale 27-15, moves to fourth place in conference standings

By
Staff Writer
Sunday, April 15, 2018

The men’s lacrosse team faced off against No. 6 Yale Saturday and looked to find its third straight Ivy League win following victories over Princeton and Penn. But a powerful offensive attack from Yale (9-2, 5-0 Ivy) proved too much for Brown (5-5, 2-2), as the Bulldogs managed to put up 27 goals to the Bears’ 15.

Yale opened scoring in the first minute of play, but the Bears responded strongly. Stephen Hudak ’18 put up back-to-back goals, which George Grell ’21 followed with another tally to give Bruno a 3-1 lead with 11:04 remaining in the first quarter.

The Bulldogs followed with a goal, which Jackson Newsome ’19 answered under a minute later, setting the game at 4-2 midway through the first. But Yale dominated the rest of the quarter and scored four straight to send the Bears into the second quarter down by two.

Brown found an offensive rhythm early in the second period. Michael Panepinto ’19 scored at the 14-minute mark, and a pair of goals from Newsome tied the game up at seven apiece.

“In the first half our offense was playing pretty well,” Hudak said. “We knew we had to get shots in on that goalie early and try to get some momentum on our shots, and I think we did that well.”

But the Bears’ offensive success was overshadowed by the Bulldogs’ offense, which went on a scoring rally late in the second quarter. Yale put away five goals before Luke McCaleb ’20 closed out scoring in the period with 50 seconds remaining, sending the game into the half 11-8 in favor of the Elis.

Yale’s offensive prowess continued in the second half. The Bulldogs won all seven faceoffs in the third quarter and took advantage, outshooting Brown 24 to 5 in the period.

The Bulldogs scored twice before Newsome responded with a goal — his fourth point of the afternoon — for the Bears, and narrowed the deficit to four.

The rest of the third was all Yale, as Bruno’s defense struggled against the Bulldogs’ solid offense, which scored six straight goals. Yale carried the rally over into the fourth quarter, and added a pair of goals early in the final frame to gain a 21-9 advantage.

But Bruno continued to fight. Newsome scored his fifth goal of the game, a career high, at the 11:53 mark. After two more goals from the Bulldogs, the Bears answered with two goals of their own, first from Jack Kniffin ’20, followed by Riley Stewart ’21.

Yale scored twice more, setting the score at 12-25 with 3:32 left in the contest. Levi McCrady ’20 responded about fifteen seconds later with his first goal of the game.

After another pair of Bulldog goals, the Bears finished out the afternoon with two scores. Tom Hale ’21 found the back of the net, logging the first point of his college career. McCrady then scored once more, setting the game to its final score of 15-27.

The game was a tale of two halves, as Brown moved the ball well and put up points early on, but struggled to find an answer to Yale’s offense in the third and fourth quarters.

“I think the game just came down to a bunch of little plays,” said Carson Song ’19. “In the first half … we were making some of those plays, and in the second half they started making more of the little plays. Looking ahead, if we can focus on attention to detail and those little fundamentals … that’s the direction and the focus and we need to reemphasize.”

After a tough game against Yale, the Bears are looking forward to the opportunity to play crosstown rival Providence College Tuesday.

“We’ll close the book on (the Yale game) relatively quickly,” Hudak said. “At this point in our season, we’ve got to worry about what we can control, and that’s just coming out and preparing for PC … It’s nice to just be able to play another game right away and keep moving forward.”

“I think the best way to think about (the loss) is that our season is ahead of us. We’re focused on our team and the things we can do and improve on more so than anything else,” Song said. “There’s obviously things to learn from that game, but I think it’s important to move on and … prepare for Providence on Tuesday.”

The next four games are all critical for the team, with matchups coming up against intrastate rivals Providence and Bryant and Ivy League foes Cornell and Dartmouth. The Bears face Providence College Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. at Stevenson-Pincince Field. Brown also remains in contention for a spot in the 2018 Ivy League tournament, which opens May 4 at Columbia.