Fiorito Saves 20 But #3 Cornell Rallies by Tigers

ITHACA, N.Y. -- No. 3 Cornell clinched the program's 16th unbeaten Ivy season with Saturday's 9-7 victory over Princeton at Schoellkopf Field. The Big Red overcame a five-goal deficit and an outstanding effort from Tiger goalkeeper Tyler Fiorito to clinch yet another unbeaten Ivy season in the program's storied history.

The Big Red ended the regular season with an 11-2 (6-0 Ivy) mark and will serve as host of next weekend's Ivy League championship tournament at Schoellkopf Field, where it will meet the fourth-seed Yale in the semifinals on Friday, May 6 at 8:00 p.m. Princeton ended its season at 4-8 (2-4 Ivy).

Princeton came out of the gates soaring, jumping out to a 6-1 lead with less than five minutes gone in the second period, but Cornell chipped away, going on an extended 7-0 run to take the lead and holding the visitors scoreless for a span of 28 minutes all told. The Big Red needed to be especially patient against a hot goalkeeper, as Fiorito made many of his 20 saves in breathtaking fashion.

In the end, Cornell was able to take care of business on both sides of the field. The Big Red caused 11 turnovers, including three by Jason Noble and two by Mike Bronzino. Backup goalkeeper Andrew West was also solid off the bench, collecting five saves and surrendering just two scores in the final 43:36 of the contest to earn his second career win.

Offensively, Rob Pannell had two goals and an assist and Jack Dudley found the back of the net twice, with Roy Lang, David Lau and Steven Mock each having a goal and an assist in the win. The Big Red had seven different goal scorers.

The Big Red held the edge in shots (45-30) and ground balls (39-31). Cornell also held the Tigers scoreless on three man-up opportunities, while converting 2 of 4, and the Big Red took care of the ball with just 12 turnovers. Princeton held the edge in face-offs, winning 13 of 20.

Goals from four different Princeton players and six saves by Fiorito in the first quarter put Cornell in its greatest deficit of the season, before Dudley scored off a pass from Lang as time wound down to make it a 4-1 game at the first break.

Back-to-back goals from Princeton's freshman Tom Schreiber and two more brilliant saves by Fiorito in the opening moments of the second quarter pushed the Tigers' lead to 6-1 before Mock converted on the doorstep off a pass from Lau to make it a four-goal game once again.

A hard-fought goal by Pannell brought the Big Red halfway back and a man-up goal by Cody Bremner made it a 6-4 game at the half. Mock earned the assist on Bremner's goal with his first helper of the season.

Dudley scored again to make it a one-goal game, converting off a pass from JJ Gilbane, with just under 10 minutes to play in the third quarter and a man-up goal by Lau, who scooped a ground ball of a Fiorito save and beat the goalie down low, knotted the contest at 6-6 at the 5:25 mark.

Lang gave Cornell its first lead of the day when he bull-dodged past his defender and beat Fiorito up high to put the Big Red up, 7-6 with just over three minutes remaining in the quarter.

A beautiful pass by Pannell set up another goal for the Big Red as he hit Scott Austin in the middle of the Princeton defense and Austin sent a low bullet into the corner of the cage to make it 8-6 at the final break.

Luke Armour ended a long Princeton scoring drought and gave the Tigers some life, making it a one-goal game with 12:48 left to play, but that would be as close as it would get as Pannell sealed the victory with just over two minutes remaining to account for the 9-7 final.

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2011-04-30



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