By: Chamberlain Bauder
BROCKPORT, N.Y. --- The SUNY Brockport men’s lacrosse team defeated SUNY Plattsburgh on Saturday 12-7 at home. Nate Askin and Ben Hay each scored hat tricks to lead their team in the goal column. Jack Peterson and Jackson Worden both returned to the lineup after injuries, Peterson slotted right back in on attack while Worden picked up second line midfield duties due to his limited reps in practice. Drew DiPalma had his first winning day at the face-off x, going 14-21 for 66%.
Cam Kuzniar had a career day in net. His 11 save performance was enough to break Brockport’s single season save record set in 2002. Kuzniar broke it with two games in hand and will have another tough match up against Geneseo on Wednesday. The save percentage was the game stat to write home about, notching a .733 save percentage on the day.
Brockport came out looking dominant despite losing the first face-off of the game. After a few possessions back and forth, and a few saves from Kuzniar, Brockport was first on the board. Jhovanny Olivares scored first utilizing a speed dodge from X to pass his short stick defender and find an angle to shoot in the bottom near post corner right on the crease. Things went back and forth again for another five minutes, neither team able to find a way through the opposing defense.
Plattsburgh started to implement a 10 man ride as the game continued to open up. This is when the goalie comes out of their crease to actively defend against the last attacker. An effective move when trying to cause turnovers due to pressure, it allows double teams, however it also can leave an empty net for transition shooters to score.
As the quarter continued the Cardinals went on the man up after Olivares was called for a slash on the ride. With just over six minutes to go in the quarter Blake Palozzi broke through a double team and found himself staring down an empty net while on the restraining line. He sent in the longshot and just like that Brockport doubled their lead while a man down. Plattsburgh responded with their first goal a minute later, John Eiseman found an outside shot that snuck past Kuzniar, going high-to-high.
Before the quarter could end Brockport doubled down. Nate Askin scored from the right wing with just over two minutes left in the quarter, receiving a pass from Ryan McCarthy. Askin painted the left corner with a right-handed shot. Only 45 seconds later, Askin took one into the hole himself, switched onto his left hand, and painted the right upper corner. The Sophomore stunned the Cardinals and closed out the opening quarter with Brockport leading 4-1.
Brockport continued the offensive domination in the second quarter. Not only did they score first, but they also went on a three-goal run in the opening three minutes of the game. The first goal came from a major miscue from the Cardinals goalie Dan Clements. He brought the ball out of his own net on the clear and lost possession at his own restraining line. Ben Hay scooped up the ground ball and put in an easy empty netter. Jesse Wooley scored the next Brockport goal. It was also an empty netter scored while Clements was covering a defender on the 10-man ride. McCarthy scored a minute later, driving from X. Once he had his shoulders square on net he faked high and went low to score Brockport’s seventh goal.
Brockport notched one more goal in the quarter after a two goal run from Plattsburgh. Carson Colucci finished team goal where every offensive player received the ball before Colucci scored wide open in the low left wing. As the game rolled in to the second half Brockport’s offense started to slow down. However, they were still able to keep the cushion of at least four goals through the entire game. In the third quarter each team scored a single goal. First was Plattsburgh as Michael Swift beat Kuzniar near post. Brockport’s goal came from the impressive X play of Wooley. He sent a pass from X to Hay on the crease. All he had to do was pick a corner and the bottom right brought Brockport’s ninth goal of the day.
The Golden Eagles scored their last three goals of the game in the opening five minutes of the fourth quarter. First was Askin finishing his hat trick. He scored Brockport’s fourth empty net goal of the day as Clements was once again caught out on the 10-man ride. The next goal came seconds later, immediately off the face-off win, DiPalma drove into the offensive zone and found Wooley wide open on the crease with his back to the goal. Without turning around, Wooley sent in a shot low-to-high and beat Clements easily. Brockport’s last goal came from the offensive IQ of graduate student and captain Jack Peterson. He found Hay on the inside to complete the Junior’s hat trick.
The Golden Eagles gave up three more goals to close out the game, only the first was scored against starters. Brockport rested most of their starters to prepare for the closing out of conference play. They will play top ranked Geneseo on Wednesday before coming home to take on New Paltz for senior day on Saturday. With the win Brockport keep their playoff hopes alive, moving to 2-3 in conference play. As for the Cardinals, they were eliminated from playoff contention with their loss to Brockport.