#14 St. Anselm Men’s Lacrosse Drops Heartbreaker in OT to #5 Pace, 12-11

PLEASANTVILLE, N.Y. – The No.5-seeded Saint Anselm College men’s lacrosse team suffered a gut-wrenching 12-11 setback in overtime to No. 4-seeded Pace University on Tuesday afternoon in a Northeast-10 Conference Championship First Round matchup at Pace Stadium in Pleasantville, N.Y.

The #14-ranked Hawks fall to 8-6 overall, while the #5 Setters improve to 12-2 and advance to take on top-seeded Adelphi University on Friday night at 7 p.m.

Anthony Busconi registered a hat-trick and added an assist for a four-point day to lead the Hawks. Matt Johnson found the back of the net twice, while James Olsen had a goal and an assist. Brennan Quackenbush, Ryan Hesseltine, Xavier Quinn, Mark Vitello and Patrick Sweeney also added goals in the setback.

Busconi added a team-high six groundballs for the Hawks, with Quackenbush scooping up five of his own. Derrick LaBranche grabbed four groundballs and caused three turnovers, with Olsen also adding four groundballs of his own.

Lucas DeAngelo recorded his ninth 10+ save outing of the season, stopping 13 shots and grabbing three groundballs.

Pace was led by four goals and an assist from Bradley Paterson, with Joshua Kreitler netting four goals of his own. Liam Brennan added a goal and two assists, while Daniel Keenan scored the game-winning goal and handed out one assist. Steven Weindler led the Pace defense with 14 groundballs, while Robert Beshlian made 15 saves in the win.

The Setters controlled the game’s opening quarter as they scored four times in the first period to take a 4-0 advantage into the second frame. Bradley Paterson made it a 5-0 lead for the home team as he opened the second quarter with a goal.

Saint Anselm finally got on the board as Matt Johnson found the back of the net to pull the Hawks to 5-1 and Patrick Sweeney made it two-straight goals for the Hawks as they trimmed the lead to 5-2 with 9:04 to play in the half. After Pace scored to make it a 6-2 game, the Hawks scored the final two goals of the quarter off the sticks of Busconi and Olsen as the Hawks entered the half down 6-4.

Busconi opened the third quarter with a goal, and after Xavier Quinn knotted the game at 6-6 with a tally, Brennan Quackenbush won the ensuing face-off and fired a shot on net that gave Saint Anselm its first lead of the game at 7-6 with 6:34 to play.

Pace answered with back-to-back goals from Paterson and Kreitler, but the Hawks got two-straight goals from Hesseltine and Vitello to put Saint Anselm back in front, 9-8 and only 16 seconds to play. The Setters won the final face-off of the period, and Kreitler ended up tying the game with only two seconds remaining to make it a 9-9 score headed to the fourth period.

The fourth quarter started much the same as Busconi scored with 11:05 to play to give the Hawks a 10-9 advantage. Pace responded less than a minute later as Kreitler netted his fourth of the game to tie it up at 10-10. Busconi set up Matt Johnson with 9:21 to play and the senior made it an 11-10 lead for the visitors.

With 7:34 remaining, Saint Anselm was called for penalty that led to a man up goal from Paterson to tie the game at 11-11. Both teams had chances down the stretch, but neither could find the go ahead goal.

In the final second of the fourth quarter, the Hawks were called for a penalty, giving Pace a man-up opportunity to start the overtime period. The Setters capitalized only 52 seconds into the extra frame as Keenan sniped a shot from 15 yards out to lead Pace to the 12-11 victory.

The Hawks held a 47-41 advantage in shots in the game, while Pace grabbed 39 groundballs to 34 for the Hawks. Saint Anselm won the turnover battle (15-16), while both teams were effective on clears with Saint Anselm going 23-of-25 and Pace going 14-of-15. The Setters won 18-of-26 face-offs on the night, and went 3-for-7 on the man-advantage compared to a 0-for-4 showing from Saint Anselm.