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Men's Lacrosse Comes up Short in Heartbreaking Loss to SUNY Geneseo

he Maritime College men's lacrosse team battled non-conference opponent SUNY Geneseo all afternoon on Saturday, Feb. 23, but ultimately fell short in the final seconds as they lost 14-13. The Knights scored the game-winning goal with four seconds left in regulation to fend off the fourth quarter comeback by the Privateers. Maritime got off to a slow start in the opening frame as Geneseo converted on two quick goals to take a 2-0 advantage less than three minutes into the game. However, the Privateers rattled off five unanswered goals in response to take control with a 5-2 lead with 5:45 left in the first half. With the half closing out, the Knights stole the momentum heading into the locker room by netting a shot with six seconds left to make it a 5-4 Maritime advantage. However, Danny Connell (Seaford, N.Y./Seaford) found reigning ECAC and Skyline Conference Rookie of the Year, Matt DeMeo(Sayville, N.Y./Sayville) in the first minute of the second half to regain a two-score lead for the Privateers. A few minutes later, Mike Leake (Rockville Centre, N.Y./South Side) scored the second goal of the half off a great pass from Mike Gomes (Dix Hills, N.Y./Commack) to maintain the two-goal advantage at 7-5. Unfortunately, it was Geneseo's turn to respond as they converted on four unanswered goals to regain the lead at 9-7 with 1:45 left in the quarter. With the momentum clearly favoring the Knights, it was Gomes who scored in the final minute for Maritime off of a Geneseo turnover to make it a one goal game heading into the fourth quarter. The fourth quarter didn't get off to the start the Privateers were hoping for as the Knights netted two quick goals to take their largest lead of the game at 11-8 with just under 10 minutes left to play. Once again, Maritime fought back as Collin Flannery(Shoreham, N.Y./Shoreham-Wading River) found DeMeo in a man-up situation to bring the score to 11-9 with eight minutes left. Leake then evened it up for the Privateers as he put away back-to-back goals to tie up the game with 4:57 remaining. Both teams traded goals until Connell slipped the ball past Geneseo's goalie to give Maritime a 13-12 lead with 2:30 left to play. The Privateers won the following face-off, but a great defensive stand by the Knights gave them the opportunity to tie the game with 1:08 remaining. Unfortunately, the crucial face-off to follow went to Geneseo and the Knights came up with a difficult shot in front of the net with four seconds left to win the game. "I'm very proud of the way our guys battled out there today," said interim head coach Justin Manjares. "Geneseo is a very good team and there were multiple times that game could have slipped away from us and we continued to find a way to battle back. Obviously a heart-breaking loss to start the season, but we can take away a lot of positives from this and improve from it down the line." Connell, Leake, and DeMeo all tallied a hat trick for Maritime with three goals each, while Connell and Bryan Keegan (Lake Grove, N.Y./Sachem North) led the team with two assists each. Kevin Buser (/) won 13 face-offs for the Privateers and picked up a team high five ground balls. Justin Weigold (Huntington, N.Y./Huntington) scooped up nine saves in the loss. Maritime heads to Drew University next Wednesday, Feb. 27 at 7 p.m.before going to Virginia on spring break to take on Ferrum and Hampton University

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