April 13th, 2013

No. 20 Bellarmine falls to Hobart in double OT

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Paul Najjar

Senior Writer


No. 20 Bellarmine falls to Hobart in double OT
Bellarmine seniors before Senior Day face-off vs. Hobart / photo from bellarmine.edu

With a postseason berth on the line, the No. 20-ranked Bellarmine Knights lacrosse team succumbed to Hobart  9-8 in double overtime Saturday afternoon at Owsley B. Frazier Stadium. The defeat drops the Knights to 7-4 overall and 3-4 in ECAC competition.

The Statesmen relied heavily on the dynamic one-two scoring punch of Alex Love (4g, assist), and Cam Stone (2g, 3a) and a moving, switching defense that the Knights could not penetrate nor solve until the second half. The win improves Hobart to 5-6 overall and 2-3 in the ECAC. Hobart will have to lose its next two games to guarantee Bellarmine entrance into the playoffs.

“We made a lot of mistakes in this game,” lamented Bellarmine head coach Kevin Burns. “We executed a little bit better in the second half, but overall they (Hobart) played a really good game. Hats off to Hobart. For long stretches of the game I thought they wanted it more than us, as much as it pains me to say that.”

The Knights took the first possession of the game, controlled the ball for nearly two minutes and put a shot on goal that was easily corralled by Hobart goalkeeper Peter Zonino, who finished with 13 saves. And that was the common theme throughout the first half: Bellarmine putting relatively easy shots on goal that Zonino consistently turned aside.

Meanwhile, the Statesman, specifically Love and Stone, carved up the Knights’ defense for six first half goals and created havoc with their wheel and deal, creative one-on-one styles. Love, with his gifted shot (he’s scored 36 goals in 11 games), and Stone with his cunning runs on goal.

All of this effort negated the Knights' first three goals, scored by sophomore long-stick midfielder Bobby Schmitt with two of them unassisted. The St. Xavier alum gave the crowd of nearly 650 an electric moment when he created a turnover, scooped up the loose ball, lumbered about 70 yards straight down the middle of the field and fired a scoring strike past Zonino. His first goal pulled the Knights within 2-1 at the 7:38 mark of the first quarter.

“I think we wasted a really good game by Bobby tonight,” Burns said. “He played so well in transition, scored all three goals in the first half and he did a great job on defense all day. We as a team have to support that type of effort a lot better than we did. We felt like if we could get four transition goals we could probably get a win. Well, Bobby got those three in transition but we couldn’t get that fourth.”

The first half of Schmitt aside, the Statesmen controlled the run of play in the first 30 minutes. It was the Stone and Love show and they were stone cold with their precision. Love put away three goals in the first half and Stone added his two.

But down 6-2 with 4:28 remaining in the second period, the Knights ticked off five straight goals over the next 28 minutes. Starting with Schmitt’s goal with 2:16 to go in the first half, Bellarmine overtook Hobart when Dylan Gatt scored his second goal of the season with 6:19 remaining to give the Knights a 7-6 lead. Hobart then notched two straight goals in a span of 1:04 to retake the lead at 8-7 before Bellarmine senior Michael Ward tallied his 18th goal of the season to tie the score with 2:37 left.

Jake McHenry gave the Statesmen the winning tally with just 0:49 remaining in the second overtime.

“Love and Stone took 21 shots between them and they scored five points apiece,” Burns said. “We knew what was coming, but we had a hard time stopping them in the first half for some reason. I feel like some really good performances were wasted today. We were in control of our own destiny with respect to the playoffs, but now we have let other people control our destiny. We’re still in it, but we’ll have to wait for other results.”

The Knights travel to Charlottesville, Va., next Saturday to play traditional power Virginia.

 

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