Royals Edge Catholic in Landmark Opener on Late Goal

SCRANTON, Pa. - University of Scranton learned Friday evening that "it ain't over till it's over" in its Landmark Conference opener against Catholic University at Fitzpatrick Field.

Stymied by a Cardinal defense that held them scoreless until the 10th-minute mark of the fourth period, the Royals pulled out a dramatic 5-4 victory on an unassisted goal by senior midfielder John Gregitis (Wayne, Pa./St. Joseph's Preparatory) with 3.6 seconds remaining.

Gregitis finished with a goal and two assists, sophomoreAlec Mikrut (Belle Mead, NJ/Montgomery) had two goals, and senior Gus Sturm (Devon, Pa./Conestoga) and freshman Brian Quinn (Wantagh, NY/Wantagh) scored one apiece as the Royals won their second straight game to improve to 4-2 overall and 1-0 in the conference.

Catholic University, which fell to 4-4 overall and 0-1 in the Landmark, was led by senior Walter Hickey (Thornwood, NY/Westlake) with two goals, junior Billy Kirmsse (Moorestown, NJ/Moorestown) had a goal and an assist, and William Cowan (Greenville, Del./Salesianum) chipped in a goal.

For 50 minutes, it appeared as if the Royals might be shut out for the first time since April 25, 2009.

The Cardinals' twice killed one-minute penalties-one late in the third period and another to start the fourth quarter-without even allowing Scranton to get off a shot attempt.

Penalties, however, came back to haunt Catholic later in the fourth period, as Mikrut and Quinn each scored on man-up situations sandwiched around a goal by Sturm that erased a 3-0 deficit and tied the game at 3-3 with 4:17 left. Twenty-six seconds after Quinn's goal, Mikrut struck again, scoring with 3:51 left to give Scranton a 4-3 lead. In the final minute, Catholic tied it up on an unassisted goal by Hickey with 37 seconds left.

Royal junior Matt Finor (Churchville, Pa./Council Rock South) then won the ensuing face-off and senior Mike Deliberti (Fairfield, Conn./Fairfield Ludlowe) came up with an key ground ball to set up Gregitis' game-winning goal.

Sophomore Harrison Holak (Doylestown, Pa./Central Bucks East) made a game-high 13 saves in goal for Catholic while Scranton sophomore Nicholas McKaba (Long Valley, NJ/West Morris) stopped 10 shots.

The Royals held a 25-23 advantage in shots and won 7 of 12 face-offs, but the Cardinals dominated the ground ball battle, 39-23.

Scranton returns to action this Wednesday, March 19, against King's College in Wilkes-Barre beginning at 4:00 p.m.


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