Spartans Knock off No. 9 Mars Hill for Seventh Win

TAMPA, Fla. - The University of Tampa lacrosse team defeated No. 9 Mars Hill College 7-6. Tampa goes to 4-0 in conference, taking sole possession of first place, and 7-3 overall. Mars Hill drops to 5-1 and 8-1 overall.

It was a game full of streaks. The Spartans took an early 1-0 lead on Greg Griffo's eighth goal of the season.

Less than two minutes later, at 11:36, Ryan Becker made it 2-0 UT with his third of the season. A.J. DeSimone extended the lead to three goals for Tampa from the assist by Jeff Clements.

After the first period, the Spartans led 3-0, took 13 shots and collected 12 ground balls.

The second quarter was a Mars Hill. Jimmy McBride cut into Tampa's lead with an unassisted goal 4:30 into the second.

A little over four minutes later, T.J. Cowx scored from a pass by Taylor Thilo to make it 3-2 UT. Tampa was able to get off 11 shots but on five on goal, which were all saved.

Goaltender Joseph Fiorucci made nine saves on 15 shots by Mars Hill in the first half.

Kyle Hemrick started the scoring for Tampa in the third making it 4-2. Griffo recorded his 12th assist of the season on the goal, which is a team high.

At 3:54, James McAuliffe scored to put UT back up by three goals. With 14 seconds left in the third, freshman Jonathan Franzese scored his 14th goal of the season.

Going into the final period of play the Spartans led the Lions 6-2. UT had 31 shots to MHC's 20.

Mars Hill scored three straight goals to start the fourth period to come to within one goal, 6-5.

However, DeSimone, the Spartans leading scorer scores with 28 seconds left in the game which proved to be the game winning goal. It was his 19th goal and 21st point of the season. Hemrick recorded the assist on the goal.

The Lions added one more with eight seconds left but would fall short, 7-6.

Fiorucci made 18 huge saves, and four in the last quarter to keep the Spartans undefeated in conference play.

Tampa plays St. Leo next on Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. at home.

2012-03-17



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