No. 1 RIT Defuses No. 15 Bombers in NCAA Second Round

ROCHESTER, NY The No. 1 RIT (19-0) lacrosse team advanced to the NCAA Division III quarterfinals for the fifth straight season and 14th time overall with a convincing 20-8 win over #15 Ithaca in Saturday's second round NCAA Tournament game at Tiger Stadium on the campus of RIT.

The Tigers will host No. 9 Union College on Wednesday, May 14 at Tiger Stadium in the quarterfinals. It will be the third time these two teams face each other this season, with RIT winning the first two meetings. The winner advances to the national semifinals next Sunday.

RIT outshot Ithaca 60-27 and won the ground ball battle 47-29. Both teams won 15 of 30 face-offs, while the Tigers were a perfect 28 of 28 on clearing attempts. The RIT ride confounded the Bombers with Ithaca going 17 of 24 on clears. RIT went 2 of 4 on man-up chances, while Ithaca finished with one goal on four man-up chances.

"That was a great team effort," said RIT head coach Jake Coon, who coached in his 100th game at RIT today, improving to 87-13 in five seasons. "I thought our defense did a great job causing turnovers and keeping Ithaca out of a rhythm, and Pat (Johnston) and later Anthony (DeLeo) made big saves when we needed them. I thought we shared the ball really well offensively and created a lot of great chances."

Casey Jackson and Ryan Lee led a potent RIT offensive attack with five points apiece. Jackson finished with four goals and an assist, while Lee tallied three goals and dished out two assists. In all, 11 different Tigers scored goals. Tyler Brooks-Lambert, Kyle Sterzin, Tyler Shaw and Braden Wallace each scored two goals. Eddie Kiesa and Kyle Aquin each had a goal and two assists, while JD Hall had a pair of helpers.

RIT scored 20 goals in a game for the fifth time this season and surpassed the 15-goal mark for the 15th time in 19 contests. RIT is averaging 17.1 goals per game in 2014.

Pat Johnston improved to 14-0 on the season in net for RIT, making 10 saves. Brooks-Lambert went 12 of 24 on face-offs, grabbed six ground balls and scored two goals. Baird Wilber caused three turnovers and had two ground balls, while Jay Krzyston and Pat Hannigan each caused a pair of turnovers for the Tigers defense.

Ithaca opened the scoring when Michael Walker scored at 13:59 giving the Bombers and early 1-0 lead.

RIT came right back, tallying five straight goals, taking a 5-1 lead on Brooks-Lambert's sixth goal of the season. Warren took a feed from Aquin at 12:12 and buried a shot, tying the score at 1-1. Jackson and Lee combined at 11:36 giving the Tigers a 2-1 lead on Jackson's 48th goal of the season. Matt Hossack and Brad Gillies hooked up in transition at 7:08 giving RIT a 3-1 lead on Hossack's fast break goal. Lee and Brooks-Lambert each tallied giving the Tigers a 5-1 lead.

James Manilla broke the Tigers run with his 25th goal of the season off a feed from Jimmy Ryan at 4:58 of the first quarter, cutting the RIT lead to 5-2.

RIT ended the quarter on a nice goal by Sterzin. He took a nifty feed from Kiesa, spun and shot in one motion tallying his 11th goal of the season giving RIT a 6-1 lead.

The Bombers came back in the second quarter, tallying the first two goals of the quarter, cutting the Tigers lead to 6-4 on Walker's second goal of the game at 11:17 off a feed from Pat Slawta.

Wallace and Lee answered right back for RIT, taking an 8-4 lead on Lee's 44th goal of the season off a feed from Aquin.

After a Ryan Burns goal made it 8-5, RIT tallied three straight, taking an 11-5 lead on Lee's second goal of the half and s45th of the season off a nice pass from Jackson.

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