HAMDEN, Conn. – Sophomore TJ Neubauer (Glen Arm, Md.) scored a career-high six goals to propel No. 15/17 Fairfield University men’s lacrosse to a 15-10 victory over Quinnipiac University this afternoon in non-league action. With the win, the Stags improve to 10-3 overall.
Neubauer had an impressive day as he finished with six goals, an assist, seven points, six ground balls, and four caused turnovers, all of which were career bests.
Junior Tristan Sperry (Saratoga Springs, N.Y.) chipped in with three goals and an assist. Junior Colin McLinden (Madison, N.J.) added two goals and two assists, moving into third all-time at Fairfield in career assists (64). Senior Eric Warden (Glen Mills, Pa.) tallied a pair of goals while rookies Dave Fleming (San Carlos, Calif.) and Jake Knostman (Bainbridge Island, Wash.) also got in on the scoring action. Fleming, the reigning ECAC Rookie of the Week, had a goal and an assist while Knostman had a goal and four caused turnovers.
Quinnipiac (5-6) got the scoring started just over a minute into the game on a goal by Ryan Keenan. Sperry answered at the 10:26 mark while Warden put the Stags ahead with a goal at 7:39. Just six seconds later, QU faceoff man Zach Vehar tied it up after winning the faceoff, charging downfield, and putting a shot past Jack Murphy (Cohasset, Mass.). Connor Meth returned the lead to the Bobcats at 5:19 but the Stags closed the quarter with back-to-back goals for the 4-3 lead.
After Quinnipiac tied it 4-4 at the 10:05 mark in the second quarter, Sperry answered a minute later by putting home a pass from Bryan Barry (Duxbury, Mass.). Neubauer extended the lead to 6-4 with an unassisted tally at 7:15 and struck again with another unassisted goal at 1:27 to make a three-goal advantage. With just 18 seconds left in the period, Matt Diehl scored to cut it to 7-5.
Less than two minutes into the second half, Sperry scored his third goal of the day off a pass from McLinden to push the lead to 8-5. The Bobcats scored at 6:18 but McLinden got the goal back 11 seconds later. Knostman gave the Stags a 10-6 lead with two minutes remaining in the quarter, but the Bobcats answered 16 seconds later.
The Stags started the fourth quarter by scoring off the opening faceoff. With just 14 ticks off the clock, McLinden found an open Neubauer for his fourth goal of the day which extended the lead to 11-7. Quinnipiac cut into the lead once more with a pair of goals to make it 11-9 with 10:52 remaining.
With 7:37 left, Warden ripped home a pass from Fleming for the first of three unanswered goals for the Stags in a span of 1:47. Neubauer added another goal, his sixth of the afternoon, at the 3:21 mark to make it 15-9 and ultimately put the game out of reach.
Murphy made 11 saves on the day three ground balls and two caused turnovers.
Fairfield went 15-for-29 at the faceoff X. Senior Michael Roe (Lutherville, Md.) won 10 of the 19 faceoffs he took with four groundballs while Louie DiGiacomo (Norwalk, Conn.) won five.
Senior Greg Perraut (Bethesda, Md.) appeared in his 60th career game, tying the program record, and finished with two ground balls and a caused turnover.
Fairfield (10-3; 2-1 ECAC) closes out the regular season on April 26 when it hosts Ohio State at Lessing Field at 1pm.
Quinnipiac Men’s Lacrosse Edged by No. 15 Fairfield, 15-10
HAMDEN, Conn. – The Quinnipiac University men’s lacrosse team went toe-to-toe with nationally-ranked No. 15 Fairfield on Tuesday evening, but a flurry of fourth quarter goals secured a non-conference victory, 15-10, for the visiting Stags on a rainy day at the QU Lacrosse Turf Field.
Quinnipiac (5-6) was led by Matt Diehl (Towson, Md.) who recorded his second straight and third three-point outing of the season. He finished with two goals and an assist, upping his season totals to 10 goals and four assists. Ryan Keenan (Oshawa, Ontario) and Connor Meth (Basking Ridge, N.J.) each had two goals, and Tom Gilligan(Brookfield, Conn.) cashed in with a goal and an assist.
Quinnipiac and Fairfield played fairly even through the first three quarters and into the final 15 minutes. After holding a 7-5 lead at the break, the Stags rallied off four of the game’s next six goals to take an 11-7 lead with 14:46 remaining in regulation. However, Quinnipiac had an answer.
The Bobcats took advantage of its lone man-up opportunity of the game, when Henry Graves (Stamford, Conn.) slipped in his third goal of the season off a feed from Michael Sagl (West Islip, N.Y.). Then it was Meth’s turn, as the sophomore scored his second goal of the game – bring the Bobcats to within two, 11-9.
Unfortunately, that was as close as the Bobcats’ upset bid would come, as four unanswered goals stretched Fairfield’s lead to six. Nate Nibbelink (Hampstead, Md.) netted Quinnipiac’s 10th goal of the game with 1:36 seconds remaining to cap off the game’s scoring summary.
Zach Vehar (Hudson, Ohio), the reigning MAAC Rookie of the Week, was strong for a second straight game. He went 14-of-28 from the X, while scoring a goal and picking up 10 ground balls.Tom McNaney (Marcellus, N.Y.) and Evan Weldon(Westchester, Pa.) each added an assist as well.
On the other side of the ball, Jack Brust (Baltimore, Md.) got the nod in goal, making 10 saves for the Bobcats. It was his first career 10-save game. As a team, Quinnipiac caused eight turnovers – which included a career high of three for Chris Kendall (Dublin, Ohio). Carmen French (Baltimore, Md.) and Meth chipped in with two apiece.
Fairfield, who saw a lengthy winning streak come to an end this past weekend, improved to 10-3 overall. TJ Neubauer led all scorers with six goals and an assist. Tristen Sperry also completed a hat trick. Fairfield’s defense forced 12 of Quinnipiac’s 20 turnovers in the game. Jack Murphy made five saves in goal for the Stags.
Sagl’s assist in the fourth quarter extended his point streak to 30 straight games. His streak is tied for the 13th longest active streak in the nation.
Quinnipiac is back in action with a crucial MAAC game on Saturday, April 19 against Siena College. The Saints are undefeated in league play, while the Bobcats need a victory to secure a spot in the playoffs. Faceoff is set for 12 p.m. at the QU Lacrosse Turf Field.
Photo courtesy Bill Danielewski