The Stony Brook men’s lacrosse team put the ball in the hands of an unlikely freshman hero during crunch time in an America East conference game against UMass Lowell at Cushing Field on Friday night.
Freshman attackman Connor Grippe tallied his fifth goal of the season against the River Hawks, sealing the victory for the Seawolves. Senior attackman Ryan Bitzer scouted the field with less than a minute to go in overtime. With a man covered on the left wing, the quarterback of the team quickly shifted his positioning and found Grippe on the perimeter of the right wing with no defender in sight.
With a man-up situation at hand due to an interference call on sophomore midfielder Clifford Kurker, Grippe took advantage of his wide-open shot and sailed the ball between the legs of sophomore goalkeeper Grant Lardieri, bouncing the ball directly into the back of the net and picking up the win for Stony Brook. The 12-11 overtime victory improves the Seawolves’ conference record to 3-2 and puts them at 7-5 overall on the season with one regular season game left to play.
Senior midfielder Alex Corpolongo led the Seawolves with five goals, bringing his season total to 32. Grippe dished the ball to Corpolongo who connected on an off-balance shot, bringing the score to 11-8 and giving the Seawolves some breathing room with 11 minutes left in regulation.
With one game remaining in the regular season, Corpolongo still needs to score five more goals to break his career-high of 36.
UMass Lowell went on a 3-0 run in the fourth quarter in under four minutes, a run that began with freshman goalkeeper Michael Bollinger’s mental error. In a man-down situation, he headed toward midfield and attempted to make a pass, but it was picked off by River Hawk freshman attackman Daniel Cozzi, who quickly scored from long distance with no goalie in the cage for the Seawolves.
River Hawk junior attackman Sean Tyrrell finished on the left side of the field with his right hand as time ticked down to 9:24 left in the fourth quarter. His teammate, junior midfielder Jon Phillips, scored an unassisted goal with 7:04 remaining on the clock, ultimately sending the game into overtime.
The River Hawks’ momentum did not flow into overtime, as the Seawolves dominated time of possession, forcing the ball to remain on the UMass Lowell side of the field for the entire fifth period.
The regular season will wrap up at home for Stony Brook next Friday night when they host Binghamton at 7 p.m.. Binghamton is currently tied with Stony Brook at 3-2 in conference play.