Goucher Holds off Royals to Earn No. 1 Seed in Landmark

TOWSON, Md. - Goucher used a nearly perfect start and an equally strong finish to earn a 13-8 victory over Scranton this afternoon that guarantees the Gophers being the No. 1 seed for the upcoming Landmark Conference postseason tournament.

Matt Lynch (Ivyland, Pa./LaSalle College) and Kyle Boncaro (Geneva, N.Y./Geneva) tallied two goals apiece and Zachary Fratella (Wilmington, Del./Brandywine) added a goal and an assist as the Gophers, who are tied with Gettysburg at No. 13 in this week's Division III national rankings by the USILA, enjoyed a 5-0 lead heading into the final minute of the first quarter. With just :19 showing on the clock, however, Daniel Slade scored for Scranton and the score was 5-1 in Goucher's favor after 15 minutes.

Twice the Gophers (14-1, 5-0 Landmark) extended their advantage to six goals in the second period, the second time when Boncaro scored with just 12 seconds remaining before halftime. But it took the Royals (8-5, 2-3 Landmark) only nine seconds to respond with another goal by Slade that made the score 9-4 at the break.

Scranton outscored Goucher, 3-0, in the third quarter, closing to within 9-5 on an unassisted goal by Dillon McInerney, 9-6 on an unassisted goal by Kyle Frank and 9-7 on an unassisted goal by Slade with 34 seconds remaining in the period. It was only the second time all season the Gophers were held scoreless for an entire quarter, the other being the fourth period of an 8-6 triumph over Washington (Md.) back on Feb. 25.

The game got even closer when the Royals cashed in on an extra-man opportunity early in the final quarter as a man-up goal by Anthony Lombardo made the score 9-8. Just 34 seconds later, however, an unassisted goal by Lynch restored Goucher's lead to two and the Gophers would tack on three more unanswered goals the rest of the way.

Lynch finished with five goals and a pair of assists, one of which represented the 200th point of his career. The senior midfielder is the fourth player in the history of Goucher's men's lacrosse program to attain that milestone, the third to do it in 2012.

By scoring four times in today's victory, Boncaro tied the single-season record for most points. With 47 goals and 22 assists, the senior attackman has 69 points, which matches Phil Anthony's total from 2002.

Slade accounted for half of Scranton's eight goals.

Connor Mishaw (Wilmington, Del./Brandywine) went the distance in goal for Goucher and made 10 saves.

* * * *

TOWSON, Md.-An early deficit turned out to be too big of a mountain to climb for University of Scranton in a rematch of the 2011 Landmark Conference championship game against #13-ranked Goucher College Saturday afternoon.

The Royals shaved a six-goal Gopher lead down to one early in the fourth period before Goucher pulled away for a 13-8 victory.

The win was the 10th straight for the Gophers, who locked up the number one seed in the upcoming Landmark Conference tournament with a 5-0 league mark while improving to 13-1 overall. The loss drops Scranton to 8-5 overall and 2-3 in the conference with one league game remaining, next Saturday, April 28, against Catholic University at Fitzpatrick Field beginning at 2:30 p.m.

Senior attacker Daniel Slade (Doylestown, Pa./Central Bucks East) led the Royals with four goals, including two during a 5-0 rally that trimmed a 9-3 Gopher lead late in the second quarter down to 9-8 with 12:15 left in the fourth period. Scranton also received two goals and an assist from senior attacker Kyle Frank (Glen Arm, Md./Boys' Latin) and a goal apiece from junior midfielder Dillon McInerney (Hawthorne, NJ/Bergen Catholic) and freshman attacker Anthony Lombardo (Mendham, NJ/Mendham).

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