February 28th, 2015

Knights rally but fall short to Buckeyes

John Spugnardi

Bellarmine University S.I.D.

Knights rally but fall short to Buckeyes
Bellarmine's Tucker Ciessau powers past an Ohio State defender / photo by John Sommers II

The Bellarmine lacrosse team started well and finished well, but a 7-0 run by Ohio State proved too much to overcome as the Knights fell 8-7 in game two of the Midwest Classic held at BU's Owsley B. Frazier Stadium on Friday evening.

The Knights (1-2) jumped out to an early lead as Tucker Ciessau opened the game's scoring at the 8:53 mark of the first quarter, and Tanner Barco registered his first career goal just two minutes later to give BU a 2-0 advantage.

It took the visiting Buckeyes (4-1) more than 11 minutes into the game before they hit the scoring column, but after David Planning scored a man-up goal for OSU at the 3:53 mark, the Buckeyes caught fire on a brisk and cold night in Louisville.

Riding a great night by face-off specialist Christopher May, who won 14 of 18 of his battles at the "X," Ohio State reeled off seven unanswered goals on the Knights as they stormed into halftime with a 7-2 lead.

"My message at halftime was that I felt we weren't playing Bellarmine lacrosse in the second quarter," said Bellarmine Coach Kevin Burns. "We were letting things other than executing our game plan get to us. I said what we're doing isn't working, let's see what happens if we play like a team and play the way Bellarmine is supposed to."

The Knights must've heard that message loud and clear as Bellarmine came out and delivered a third quarter shutout to the Buckeyes while Austin Shanks and Dylan Gatt notched goals to draw BU within 7-4 heading into the final period.

Ryan Scinta trimmed the OSU lead to just two early in the fourth quarter, but the Buckeyes answered with what would be their only goal of the second half on a goal by Carter Brown at the  11:47 mark to extend their lead to 8-5.

Ohio State was then able to slow the game considerably as the Buckeyes didn't fire another shot for more than five minutes.  Meanwhile, Bellarmine managed just two shots until Jack Perkins rang up a goal at the 6:34 mark to again pull within two at 8-6.

Coming down the stretch, Bellarmine goalie Drew Goethals came up with two of this 13 saves on the night while offensively the Knights peppered OSU with five shots, including a missile from Perkins that caromed of the post. Ciessau finally got one past the Buckeyes' goalie with just 12 ticks left on the clock to pull within one, but May won the ensuing face-off and OSU was able to kill the remaining time to hang on for the win.

"I'm disappointed in the outcome but I'm proud of how we battled back," Burns said. "I think we learned very important lessons in our pursuit of a conference championship."

Bellarmine returns to action on Sunday at 3:30 p.m. against the Detroit Titans on day two of the Midwest Classic on Bellarmine's campus. 


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