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Saturday, April 19, 2008 - page 3

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defense rules on men’s lax senior night

On a night to honor nine special seniors, the defense of the Muhlenberg men’s lacrosse team sent the Montclair State goal scorers into early retirement.

The Mules held the Red Hawks without a goal for the last three quarters – a shutout
Luke Lamarca
LaMarca won all four of his faceoffs against Montclair and is winning 57.8 percent of his faces on the season.
string of 48:10 – and came from behind for their sixth consecutive win, 8-4.

The victory was the school-record eighth of the season for Muhlenberg, which had blanked a team for three straight quarters just once before (in a 2004 game against Moravian) since resuming its program in 2003.

After a pregame ceremony in which the nine Mule seniors were introduced to the large crowd along with their parents, Montclair (9-4) tried to spoil the party, scoring a goal just 2:07 into the game, then adding another one 18 seconds later. A third goal at the 9:24 mark made it 3-0.

“The main thing right at the beginning was that we weren’t communicating,” said junior John DeLuca. “If you don’t communicate well your defense will break down.”

The Red Hawks made the score 4-1 on a man-up goal with 3:11 left in the first quarter, and there
Tim Martin
Muhlenberg’s active leader in career ground balls, Martin added five to his total against the Red Hawks.
were no more breakdowns after that. After taking 14 shots in the opening period, Montclair managed just 10 in the next two. The visitors took 10 shots in the four quarter, but six of those were in the last two minutes when the outcome was not in doubt.

The lockdown was led by starting longsticks DeLuca and sophomores Matthew Schroeder and Ivan Brown and also included strong efforts from defensive middies like seniors Tim Dwyre, Tim Martin and Josh Mosberg.

Still, Muhlenberg (8-4) did not take over the game until late in the third quarter, as the offense took a while to get in gear. Shut out in the second quarter, the Mules broke their own scoring drought when senior Kyle Farris converted a pass from senior Mickey Norton for a man-up goal with 8:07 left in the third.

About two-and-a-half minutes later, Farris tied the game with another goal, his school-record 30th of the season. Doug Cornwell set the previous mark of 29 in 1974.

Sophomore Sean Delany gave Muhlenberg its first lead with an unassisted goal from a tough angle to the right side of the cage with 3:06 left in the third.

DeLuca ended a burst down the field by beating the Hawk goalie with a ground shot early in the fourth, and goals by juniors Nick Fletcher and Andrew Lolley 25 seconds apart completed the game-ending 6-0 run. Lolley’s goal was his third of the game.

The victory completed a memorable night for the nine seniors: Dwyre, Farris, Martin, Mosberg, Norton, faceoff specialist Luke LaMarca, starting midfielder Mike Brown and defensemen Carlo Morrongiello and Luke Silverman.

“The seniors have been great leaders and really transformed our program,” said DeLuca. “When they first got here it was an up-and-coming team, and now if we win our next conference game we’ll be in the playoffs in the toughest conference in Division III.

“It’s an unbelievable accomplishment to grow a program like that in four years, and it’s a tribute to our seniors.”
Click here for box score.

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