Ithaca Holds on for Victory over Hartwick

ONEONTA, NY Visiting Ithaca built an 8-3 lead in the third quarter and held on for a 10-8 win in Empire 8 men's lacrosse action on Saturday at Wright Stadium. Trailing by five, the Hawks clawed their way back into the game and twice cut the deficit to two goals but could not get any closer. Ithaca improves to 5-9 overall and 3-3 in the Empire 8 with the victory. The Hawks slip to 4-8 and 1-6 in conference play.

Hartwick's Dave Aitchison (Farmingdale, NY/N. Massapequa) led his team once again with four goals and an assist. Joe Shields (Loundonville, NY/Shaker) and Harry Hughes (Holtsville, NY/Sachem East) each netted two goals apiece and Matt Landry (Duxbury, MA/Duxbury) contributed an assist.

Ithaca received two goals apiece from Ryan Lowe, Tom Mongelli, and Nick Heckman. Jay Lucas added a pair of assists.

IC jumped out to a two-goal lead as Lowe and Heckman tallied in the first two minutes of the first quarter. Despite dominating in shots in the quarter, 17-7, the Hawks were unable to get onto the scoreboard until Shields found the net with seven seconds to go.

Nick Neuman gave the Bombers some breathing room four minutes into the second quarter, but Aitchsion and Hughes came right back for Hartwick with goals in a 2:30 span to bring the Hawks even, 3-3. James Callahan closed out the half with a goal to give the visitors the edge at the half and the lead for good.

The Bombers took command in the third period scoring four unanswered goals in the first nine minutes. Mongelli netted two to lead IC in the run. Down 8-3, the Hawks stormed back with Aitchison scoring twice and Hughes adding a score all within 1:12 of each other making it an 8-6 game. Brian DiBetta scored from Lucas with 17 seconds left in the quarter the get one back for the Bombers.

Ithaca tallied four minutes into the fourth to build its advantage to four, but Aitchison scored a minute later, and Shields added his second of the day for a 10-8 game with 4:22 left on the clock. The Hawks killed off three penalties in the next two and a half minutes and had a few chances to cut the deficit to a single goal in the final 90 seconds of action. Aitchison and Shields both had efforts turned away by Bomber goalie David Gal and the Bombers were able to run out the remainder of the clock to earn the victory.

For the game, Hartwick outshot the Bombers 47-34. The Bombers held the edge in ground balls 32-27and won 18 of 20 face-offs. Gal ended the game with 17 saves. Hartwick's Ryan Twardowski (Emmaus, PA/S. Lehigh) stopped nine.

Hartwick defenders Kevin Miller (Wantagh, NY/Wantagh) and Alex Skvarch (Syracuse, NY/Marcellus) combined for 10 ground balls and seven caused turnovers on the day. Brandon Wilk (Hillsborough, NJ/Hillsborough) and Mike Morrison (Holbrook, NY/Sachem East) each registered four ground balls for the Hawks.

Nick Munn and Neuman combined for 16 ground balls to pace the Bombers. Neuman also won all 18 of IC's draws.

Hartwick wraps up its home schedule on Tuesday night when it battles cross-town rival Oneonta State at 7:00 p.m. The Hawks then travel to Alfred for its season finale on May 1.


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