Lehigh Upsets No. 9 Villanova in Double Overtime

Fantoni and Cameron Lao-Gosney scored goals in the first two minutes of the final quarter as Lehigh went on top 14-10 with 12:56 to play, but that proved to be the Mountain Hawks final scoring in regulation as Villanova slowly chipped away at the Lehigh lead. Webber's goal with 1:43 tied things at 14, but neither team was able to score for the remainder of regulation and so they headed for overtime.

After a scoreless first overtime session the teams headed for a second where Fantoni capped off a terrific performance with his goal at the 1:24 mark. The entire Lehigh sideline emptied out onto the field and rushed towards Fantoni as the Mountain Hawks celebrated their biggest win under Cassese. "To be honest I hadn't even thought about that," Cassese said. "But that's not important to me; it's all about these guys and the effort they showed tonight. I'm just extremely happy for every player on the roster."

Cassese offered his thoughts on Lehigh's play on Senior Night. "That was the message tonight, to play for our seniors. They started it off the right way, leading by example. Taylor Castagna gets an early goal and then later in the game John Henry McNierney picks up a huge ground ball so terrific effort from those guys. And then the young guys step up late and help us get this one. I'm impressed by this team as a whole; they battled and battled and were rewarded with a win."

Lehigh returns to action on Saturday evening as the Mountain Hawks travel to Easton to take on their archrivals, the Lafayette Leopards. Game time is set for 7:00 from inside Lafayette's Fisher Stadium.

* * * *

BETHLEHEM, Pa. Another fourth quarter comeback propelled No. 9 Villanova (8-4, 2-1 Big East) into overtime versus the Lehigh Mountain Hawks (7-7, 1-4 Patriot League), but it wasn't enough for the victory as the Wildcats fell in a double overtime heartbreaker, 15-14, at the Ulrich Sports Complex in Bethlehem, Pa. on Tuesday evening.

The back-and-forth contest featured six tied scores and three lead changes throughout the six period affair. It also marks the first time the Wildcats have played overtime in 2010.

The first quarter provided a glimpse of what was to come with a combined nine goals being tallied in the first fifteen minutes. Senior Paul Webber (Manhasset, N.Y.) gave Villanova a solid start with two goals in the first three minutes of play off assists from sophomore Matt Bell (Severna Park, Md.) and senior Mark Scioscia (East Hampton, N.Y.).

Freshman Jack Rice (Baltimore, Md.) and sophomore C.J. Small (San Diego, Calif.) capped the VU first quarter scoring from Kevin Cunningham (Garden City, N.Y.) and Mike Brennan (Manhasset, N.Y.) feeds.

Lehigh captured scores from Noah Molnar, Taylor Castagna, Adam Johnston and Richard Bradley to give the Mountain Hawks a slight 5-4 lead going into the second period.

A Villanova Jack Rice goal at the 13:22 mark tied the game at 6-all before Lehigh's Dante Fantoni netted two goals for the Hawks in the second quarter. VU then proceeded to go on a three goal scoring streak with tallies from Brennan, Rice and a Michael Vigilante (Massapequa, N.Y.) goal.

Prior to intermission, the Wildcats held Lehigh scoreless the last 12:54 minutes of the half while scoring three straight to go up 8-7 at the half.

Lehigh posted four goals in the third quarter to Villanova's two and provided six unanswered scores leading into the fourth period to give the Hawks a 14-10 advantage with 12:56 left to play in regulation. Villanova then answered with four straight goals, two from Scioscia and help from Cunningham and Webber.

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2010-04-21



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