By: Marisa Ingemi
For the first time, Boston University men’s lacrosse is postseason bound. James Burr sent the Terriers to the Patriot League tournament with an overtime goal to bury Loyola, 12-11.
BU started out hot with three straight tallies, but Loyola answered by the end of the first quarter to tie it up. BU took a brief 4-3 lead before the Greyhounds tied it again, and Loyola would hold onto that lead deep into the contest.
The Greyhounds had the stall warning called on them three times in the first quarter alone as their slow paced offensive sets led to some defensive Terrier breakdowns, including two goals from Zack Sirico where he charged past BU sophomore Quentin Germain from behind the net.
Loyola went on a 6-1 run where BU’s offense stalled, and it didn’t get going again until the third quarter where Cal Dearth scored two straight to close the frame, two of his five tallies on the afternoon.
Jack Wilson and Hayden Ruiz scored early in the fourth quarters on transition chances, and eventually the game was deadlocked 10-10. Sophomore Michael Laviano, who more runs than usual from the midfield, gave BU their first lead since the first half with a tally with three and a half minutes left in the game. Alex McGovern tied the game, and that would be the final tally until overtime.
BU goalie Christian Carson-Banister made several key saves, including the final sequence of the game. Loyola’s Brian Sherlock had space to shoot and rang the post from long-distance, but it went out of bounds with the Greyhounds the closest too it, forcing a final shot in regulation that the BU ‘tender had to save.
The only shot taken in overtime turned out to be the winner, as Joe Stucky won the opening faceoff. Two timeouts later, and the Terriers had an offensive set to work with. Wilson connected with Burr from behind the net for the game winning goal.
The victory sends BU to its first ever conference tournament in the fourth year of being a Division 1 varsity program. The past two seasons, it came down to the final day of the regular season where BU fell to Holy Cross.
Dearth’s five goals matched his career high. He played attack for the most of the game alongside Wilson and Burr, who each scored twice, with attackman Ryan Hillburn seeing less action than usual.
“We tend to get a little jittery sometimes,” Dearth said. “I think that was mental mistakes but we rebounded in the second half.”
Tewaaraton candidate Pat Spencer, a sophomore with 66 points heading into the contest, was held to just a lone assist as he was shut down by BU close defender Dominick Calisto. It was the first time all season he was held to one point.
“We didn’t want his hands free,” Ryan Polley. “He’s just so dangerous even when he surveys you defense, so we didn’t shut him, but y when he got the ball we tried close the space and have a slide ready. Calisto did a wonderful job on him, you could make an argument that he’s the best cover guy in the conference; he showed that by doing a great job on Spencer.”
Stucky went 17-for-27 from the faceoff dot against Graham Savio, who broke the PL all-time career faceoff wins record during the contest when he reached 665.
“Henry Lee was incredible, he got two loose balls pushing transition,” said Polley. “Stucky, he gave us opportunities off the faceoff. We were opportunistic off the faceoffs. He was great on the clamp.”
The Terriers have an outside shot at making the national tournament as an at large, but their best bet is to win the conference. They have a chance at being the second seed, which would send them into the semifinals automatically. They also would likely host a quarterfinal game as the three or the four seed.