Tampa Falls in DSC Semifinals to Florida Southern

TAMPA, Fla. - The University of Tampa lacrosse team lost to Florida Southern College in the Deep South Conference semifinals, 11-7. Tampa finishes the season 11-5, as Florida Southern will face Catawba College Sunday at Mars Hill in the conference finals.

The highly anticipated rematch started out with FSC dominating the first quarter. Shane Tompkins has two goals in the first helped give the Mocs a 4-0 lead after one. Mat Thompson and Wes Venturino also added one each.

Dane Sorensen scored at the 5:22 in the second period to put Florida Southern up 5-0.

The Spartans didn't get on the board until less than two minutes remaining in the half when A.J. DeSimone scored his 23rd goal of the season. Greg Griffo recorded his 16th assist.

Tampa came out in the second half looking like a new team, when Kyle Hemrick scored less than three minutes into the third.

Kevin Castle scored a man-up goal at the 7:46 mark to bring UT within two. Griffo registered another assist on the play.

However, FSC answered as Sorensen scored his second of the game, putting them back up by three.

Griffo and DeSimone each scored again, making it 6-5 in the third quarter.

Sorensen retaliated again notching his third of the game, giving the Moccasins a two goal edge after three full periods.

The fourth was all Florida Southern, as it scored four straight to open the quarter. Sorensen added his fourth goal of the game, with Thompson and Tompkins picking up their second each.

Before the final horn sounded, Jonathan Franzese and Hemrick both scored to make it 11-7, but the Spartans would eventually run out of time.

In its first year, the University of Tampa won 11 games, including going 7-1 in the Deep South Conference. Despite the loss, the future for Tampa lacrosse looks to be bright.

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Florida Southern scored the first five goals of the game en route to an 11-7 win over Tampa to advance to the Deep South Conference championship game Thursday night at Pepin Stadium. The Moccasins will face Catawba, who defeated Mars Hill 9-7, in a rematch of last year's championship game Sunday at 1:00 p.m. in Mars Hill, N.C.

"I'm really proud of this group, they went out and earned this victory tonight with hard work and dedication," said head coach Marty Ward.

The Moccasins (10-5) came out firing on all cylinders. The offense outshot Tampa 13-1 in the opening period and converted four of them into goals, while the defense forced six turnovers and blanking the Spartans. Mat Thompson got the scoring started by picking up a rebound off a Dane Sorensen shot and putting it home. Tompkins scored back-to-back goals to give the Mocs a 3-0 lead. One minute later, Wes Venturino led a Mocs fast break and scored his first goal of the season to give the Mocs a 4-0 after the first quarter.

The second quarter saw back and forth action to open play, but the period remained scoreless for the first nine minutes of the second quarter. Sorensen picked up the rebound off Thompson's shot and found the back of the cage to extend the Mocs lead to 5-0 with 5:22 remaining. Tampa took advantage of two Mocs' penalty as A.J. DeSimone scored the man-up goal to put Tampa on the board with 1:55 left in the second quarter.

The Spartans (11-5) came out firing in the third quarter scoring back-to-back goals to cut the lead to 5-3. The Moccasins responded taking advantage of a Spartans' turnover as Ricky DeMicco made a quick dish to Sorensen for the goal. Back-to-back goals by Greg Griffo and DeSimone brought the Spartans within one, which was the closest Tampa got to tying the game. Florida Southern took advantage of a Spartans' penalty as Tompkins found Sorensen for the man-up goal to give the Mocs a 7-5 lead after three quarters.

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