Photos/Recap: Syracuse Upended by Bryant in NCAA Opener

After registering 14 shots in the first half, Syracuse attempted 24 in the second and outshot the Bulldogs for the game, 38-27. The Orange also held a 30-26 advantage in ground balls.

The win was Bryant's first in the NCAA Tournament. The Bulldogs will face No. 7 seed Maryland in the quarterfinals Saturday, May 17 at Hofstra's Shuart Stadium.

Game Notes: Syracuse is 24-3 all-time in NCAA playoff games at the Carrier Dome. Prior to Sunday, the team's only previous NCAA Dome losses were to North Carolina (1991) and Army (2010) ... Rice finished the season with 80 points (36 goals, 44 assists), the highest total an Orange player since Mike Leveille had 83 in 2008 ... Defenseman Brandon Mullins (Coppell, Texas) held Morrell, Bryant's leader in points, to one goal on four shots. Mullins collected five ground balls and caused three turnovers ... Harris also forced three turnovers against the Bulldogs and finished his career second all-time at SU with 68 caused turnovers ... Daddio picked up five ground balls to raise his 2014 total to 93, fourth on the SU single-season record list.

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SYRACUSE, N.Y. In the most monumental win in program history and one of the best upset stories in the history of the NCAA tournament, the No. 19 Bryant University men's lacrosse team never trailed against second-seeded Syracuse, topping the fourth-ranked Orange, 10-9, inside the Carrier Dome Sunday night in the NCAA First Round.

With the victory, the Bulldogs (16-4) advance to the NCAA Quarterfinals for the first time in program history and will take on seventh-seeded Maryland Saturday, May 17 at 12:00 p.m. (ESPN2).

"There are so many layers to this win," said Bryant head coach Mike Pressler. "Not only was it Syracuse at Syracuse one of the most storied programs in Division I history but we did it after playing a play-in game on Wednesday. To beat Syracuse at the Carrier Dome on four short days is a monumental win for our program."

After breaking a 1-1 tie with 22 seconds left in the first quarter, Bryant stayed one step ahead of Syracuse (11-5) through the end of the third, taking a 7-5 lead into the fourth. But it was the Orange who stole the momentum to start the frame, scoring two quick goals in the opening five minutes to knot the game at 7-7 with 10:32 to go in regulation.

Rookie attack Tucker James (Essex Fells, N.J.) took command of the game from there, though, putting the visiting Bulldogs back on top off a feed from sophomore midfielder Collins Gantz (Denver, Colo.) with 7:52 remaining with his third score of the game. James renewed Bryant's two-goal edge three minutes later on an unassisted tally, but Kevin Rice would draw the Orange back within one, 9-8, as the clock ticked below the four-minute mark.

But as they had all game, the Bulldogs continued to fight, responding just 65 seconds later off the stick of leading scorer Shane Morrell (Glen Mills, Pa.), as the sophomore attack netted what would eventually serve as the game winner in the program's first-ever victory over a top-10 opponent and fourth win over a nationally ranked foe this season.

"The key was that we never let Syracuse take the lead," said Pressler, "and with that goal our confidence grew."

Rice would give the Black and Gold a scare in the game's final seconds, closing the margin to 10-9 with seven seconds to play, but sophomore goalie Gunnar Waldt (Freeland, Md.) stood tall between the pipes with eight fourth-quarter saves (13 total) to hold on for the one-goal victory.

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2014-05-12



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