No. 4 Mercyhurst Upended by Seton Hill in ECAC Semifinals

ERIE, Pa.- No. 4 Mercyhurst lacrosse scored six straight fourth-quarter goals to tie Seton Hill, but fell in the end, 10-9, in an Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) semifinal at blustery Tullio Field Friday.

The Lakers will now await word from the NCAA. The Selection Show is Sunday, May 4, at 7:30 p.m. on Mercyhurst was ranked second in the South Region in the most recent standings. The top four teams from each region will advance to the NCAA Tournament.

On Friday, the Lakers fell behind, 4-0, after one quarter. The Griffins eventually took a 9-3 lead through three periods. Mercyhurst fought back, however, tying the game with a thrilling spurt down the stretch. Brett Williams found Trevor Vargo for his third goal of the day with 14:11 left in the match. A few minutes later, Chad Levick finished a Brady Heseltine pass for a man-up goal, cutting the deficit to 9-5. Mitch McAvoy won the ensuing faceoff and sprinted into the offensive zone, finding Jake McAndrew for a goal just five seconds after Levick scored.

At the 8:18 mark, Brandon Thomson scored off a Williams assist to inch closer. Cory Becker set up another Vargo goal with 5:41 remaining, making it 9-8. After a Griffin turnover, Williams found Thomson for the tying goal with 3:03 to go, sending the Tullio Field crowd into chaos.

A Laker turnover and then penalty set up a Griffin man-up chance in the final two minutes. With 1:34 left, Zach Hartmann scored, putting Seton Hill back in the lead. The Lakers won the ensuing faceoff and had two shots at the net, but the Griffins held on and advanced to the ECAC Championship on Sunday.

Vargo scored a career-high four goals. Thomson and Levick each scored twice and Williams dished out three assists. McAndrew added a goal and a helper. McAvoy won 14-21 faceoffs and collected a career-high 16 ground balls. Michael Grace made six saves in goal.

Mercyhurst dropped to 12-3 and will hope to have its name called at Sunday's Selection Show. Seton Hill improved to 10-5 and will face Lake Erie, who defeated Wheeling Jesuit in Friday's other semifinal, in the ECAC Championship Sunday at noon.


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