No. 19 Simon Fraser Knocked off by Arizona

BURNABY, BC (March 1, 2013) No. 19 Simon Fraser outscored Arizona 10-8 over the final three quarters but would be unable to overcome a 6-2 first quarter deficit, falling to the visiting Laxcats by a final score of 14-12. The loss moves SFU to 4-2 on the year, with a combined 3 goals responsible for the only blemishes on the Clan's 2013 record after falling 9-8 to No. 8 Oregon earlier this season.

Sophomore midfielder Sam Clare (Ladner, BC/Vancouver College) led Fraser in points with 4 goals and 1 assist, including three of the Clan's final four goals during a 4-0 run over the games final 6:00 minutes. Senior attackman Colton Dow (Coquitlam, BC/Heritage Woods Secondary) also had a strong day on the scoresheet, recording 4 goals in the loss. Arizona came into the game recently bounced from the MCLA's Top 25 following a 9-8 overtime loss to Grand Canyon, after starting the season ranked at No. 22.

The opening quarter was all Arizona, as the Laxcats caught Simon Fraser on their heels, racing out to a quick 3-0 lead on back-to-back goals by senior attackman Luke Strode (Denver, CO/Regis Jesuit), followed by another marker from midfielder Ben Brehne (Baltimore, MD/St. Paul's School), to cap a 3-0 run early in the match-up.

Fraser freshman Alex Bohl would get the Clan on the board at 3-1, but an Arizona man advantage would kick-off another 3-0 run on consecutive goals by sophomore attack Zach Johnson (Phoenix, AZ/Sandra Day O'Connor) to extend the score to 6-1. Dow would score his first of the day on a pass from freshman Andrew Branting (Duncan, BC/Cowichan Secondary) on the man-up to reset the score to 6-2 and spot the Laxcats a 4-goal lead after 15:00 minutes.

A solo drive from X by SFU attackman Ward Spencer (Saskatoon, SK/Evan Hardy Collegiate) would start the second quarter scoring and bring the Clan to within three at 6-3. Arizona freshman midfielder Theodore Wolter (Pottstown, PA/The Hill School) would then press the score to 7-3 on the man-up, followed by a fast break goal by Clare, and Branting converting a Bohl pass, to close the gap to two at 7-5. Despite the growing push from SFU, the Laxcats would count two more goals before the break to take a four-goal lead of 9-5 heading in to the intermission.

Fraser would once again start the third quarter on the assault, with Dow and Spencer scoring unanswered to bring the Clan back to within two at 9-7. Arizona man-up opportunities would continue to stall the SFU momentum, as attackman William Stanaback (Califon, NJ/Voorhees High School) traded goals with Dow on the man advantage to move the score to 10-8. Arizona would continue to keep their distance as Brehne and Johnson added two more goals for the Laxcats to end the third quarter with UA up 12-8.

Johnson would score his game-high fifth goal to begin the final frame, followed by senior midfielder Bobby Ecker (Palos Verdes, CA) to continue the Arizona run and extend the Laxcat lead back to six with just under 10:00 minutes left to play. SFU would finally catch fire down the stretch with Clare scoring in the 54th and 55th minute, followed by Dow at 57:50 and Clare again at 58:05 to bring the Clan back to within two but the SFU comeback attempt would ultimately fall short as the final horn sounded, ending the game at 14-12.

The win improves Arizona to 2-2 on the season, as they continue their Northwest trip with a game at Washington this Sunday, March 3.

Simon Fraser will have little time to dwell on the setback, as they embark on a three game swing through Colorado March 8-13 where they will face No. 1 Colorado State on March 9, No. 5 Colorado on March 10 and No. 11 Virginia Tech, neutral site at Colorado, on March 12.


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