Hofmeister Sparks VMI in Double OT Win Over Richmond

LEXINGTON, Va. -- If you're going to play your final game, you may as well make it big. And VMI senior Mickey Hofmeister did just that, scoring five times, including the game-winner in double overtime against Richmond Saturday afternoon in Atlantic Sun Conference lacrosse action.

The Williamsburg, Va. native drove to the goal from behind, slipping between his defender and the crease before potting the game-winner, giving VMI its first win over a Division I opponent from the Commonwealth of Virginia since 1996.

Prior to the game, the program honored the Class of 2014, Hofmeister, Rory Dillon and Eric Alter. The team played with heavy hearts after the loss of Alter earlier in the week. The seniors and their families were joined in a moment of silence by the team near midfield.

Hofmeister led the day with five of VMI's seven goals, capping his career at VMI with a 14-game point scoring streak. The game-winner was the 30th of the season, marking Hofmeister as the first Keydet with 30 goals since Drew Leonard in 2011.

Joining Hofmeister on the scoreboard were junior Mike DeBlasio and freshman Dale Mattice, who had the first goal of the game. Mattice also logged the lone assist for the Keydets.

Richmond's scoring efforts were paced by Mitchell Goldberg, who finished with three goals. Brad Burnham, Jackson Cabot and J.P. Forester tallied one goal apiece. Alex Hatem and Jean-Luc Chetner registered one assist each.

Goaltending was strong on both ends as VMI (2-12, 1-4 A-Sun) got 13 saves from junior Evan Windisch while the Spiders' keeper Benny Pugh stopped 14 Keydet efforts. Windisch made one save in the first overtime period to extend the game.

Faceoffs were key to the Keydets first double overtime win since topping Marist College 16-15 in 2005. Freshman Mitch Wilson took all 18 draws for the Keydets, winning 12 of those and picking up seven groundballs. Richmond (4-10, 2-3 A-Sun) trotted out three players to take on Wilson, but managed just six wins all afternoon. Peter Moran won three of those draws on 11 chances while longstick midfielder Brenden Hynes won two of his five efforts.

Each team took two shots in extra time with the Spiders' pair coming in the first overtime while VMI took two in the second. DeBlasio took the Keydets' first chance in transition, getting a dish from defenseman Tyler Prasnicki, but the chance was just high. VMI's second shot in overtime proved to be the winner from Hofmeister's stick.

Overall, VMI ripped of 36 shots while Richmond took 35. The Spiders' shooters came alive in the second half, combining for 22 shots in the third and fourth quarters. But Windisch was up to the task, making 10 saves over the final 35 minutes.

Prasnicki was a force to be reckoned with on defense, forcing the Spiders into season-high seven turnovers while picking up nine groundballs. As a team, the Keydets caused 17 turnovers with another four by Dillon and two from sophomore Ian Marinacci.

Behind Prasnicki's nine groundballs, VMI out-gained Richmond 37-28 in grounders, including 11 in the third period. Of the 37 groundballs, VMI picked up 22 in the second half and overtime. Windisch and freshman defenseman Tom Brown collected four apiece.

The Keydets never trailed in the game as Mattice scored the first goal of the game just 40 seconds in, driving through the heart of the Spider defense. Richmond leveled the game three minutes later as Cabot potted his goal. The remainder of the first period was scoreless.

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