On a cloudy and relatively gloomy "spring" afternoon at Bahlke Field, the Alma College men's lacrosse team hosted Mt. St. Joseph College (OH). The Scots, looking for their third win in a row, spotted the Lions an early lead, came back to lead at halftime, only to lose 6-5 in the end.
Alma is now 2-4 on the season, while the Lions earned their first victory of the 2014 campaign and leave town with a mark of 1-4.
"There's no easy way to put it, we gave the game away," said Alma Head Coach Jason Levesque. "We came out prepared and ready to play today and played well for the majority of the game, however there's no doubt we let a win slide through our fingers. We deserved a better fate with the effort the team put out today, however mistakes and miscues at critical points in the game on routine plays cost us this afternoon.
"It's a bend in our developmental learning curve so to speak. I'm confident in the young men within our program that we can all take valuable lessons from today's loss and move forward together. The close losses are tough for everyone, but we will learn from it and be better because of it."
The Lions opened up the scoring with 2:24 left in the first quarter, but the Scots answered with 24 seconds left in the frame as Fr. M/A TJ Miller (Brighton/Brighton) scored on an assist by So. M/A David Foster (Ann Arbor/Pioneer).
Mt. St. Joseph regained the advantage at 2-1 at the 12:37 mark of the second quarter but the lead would not last long. So. M/A Marshall Argenta (Stafford, NY/Notre Dame) scored at 10:09 on an assist by Jr. D Alex Novak (South Holland, IL/Marian Catholic), deadlocking the contest at 2-2.
Argenta tallied again on an unassisted goal at 9:46, and the Scots went into the break with a 4-2 advantage after Novak scored unassisted with 1:00 left in the frame. So. GK Al Lesperance (Farmington/Farmington) had two saves in net for Alma during the first half, keeping the home team ahead.
It was a scoreless third quarter as the contest settled into a defensive affair. 1:01 into the fourth quarter, the Scots took a 5-2 lead when Foster tallied his fifth of the year on an assist by So. M/A Kyle Schnitzer (Aurora, CO/Smoky Hill). At this point, the game looked solidly in hand for the home team.
However, the Lions had other ideas. Mt. St. Joseph scored three goals in a span of 3:07 to tie the game at 5-5 with 6:38 remaining. Each team was careful offensively from that point on, but the Lions would be the one to break the deadlock. With just 30 ticks on the clock left, Jesse Mayer hit the back of the net for the visitors and they held on for the improbable 6-5 road victory.
Lesperance finished the game with six saves in net for the Scots, while So. D Sam Korbel (Schaumburg, IL/Schaumburg) and Fr. M/A Josh Sejat (Grand Rapids/Northview) each had four ground balls. Sejat also won eight faceoffs during the game and Jr.M Tyler Bennett (New Lothrop/New Lothrop) added two.
Alma is now off until Friday, March 14 when they play at Franciscan University, beginning at 5:00 p.m.