(Chestertown, Md.) – The #13-ranked Dickinson College men's lacrosse team advanced to defend its title at the 2012 Centennial Conference Championship, posting a 10-5, semifinal win over #20-ranked Gettysburg on Friday. Washington College defeated McDaniel, 8-4, in the other semifinal.
Defense and goaltending were the story in the early going as the teams played scoreless until there was less than five minutes remaining in the first quarter. The Bullets struck first as Robby Maddux scored off an assist from Evan Thomas at the 4:43 mark.
Maddux found the net again, just over a minute later, picking up his own rebound and scoring to put Gettysburg in front, 2-0, at the end the first quarter.
The teams traded possessions to open the second quarter. Senior Kevin Joy (Darien, Conn./Darien) knocked the ball out of a Gettysburg stick and the Devils took over with just under 12 minutes to play in the half.
The Bullets forced a turnover but lost the ball out of bounds. Dickinson capitalized with a goal from junior Nick Leon (Chevy Chase, Md./Gonzaga), scoring at the 9:42 mark, with an assist from classmate Matt Cherry (Bryn Mawr, Pa./Radnor).
The Bullets won the face-off but the Devil defense forced another turnover, putting the ball in the sticks of the Red Devil attack. Gettysburg goaltender Jon Maddalone came up with a pair of big saves, including one off a fast break shot from long pole defender Draper Donley (Lutherville, Md./St. Paul's).
Cherry dished out a pair of assists in a less than a minute to give the Devils a 3-2 advantage. He fed senior Bobby Kingsley (Bethesda, Md./St. Albans) with 2:08 remaining in the half, and gave the Devils the lead with 1:22 on the clock, finding Brian Cannon (Reisterstown, Md./Loyola-Blakefield).
Martin Manilla scored off an assist from Andrew Toner with just four seconds remaining in the half to tie the game, 4-4, at the break.
The third quarter was all Red Devils as they scored five straight goals to take an 8-3 lead into the final period.
Junior Christian Beitel (Newtown, Conn./Newtown) dodged and scored to give Dickinson a 4-3 lead with 11:36 to play in the third. Gettysburg won the face-off, but junior goaltender Greg Hanley (Laurel Hollow, N.Y./Cold Spring Harbor) made a huge save to turn back the Bullets.
First-year Slay Sudah (Franklin Park, N.Y./St. Joseph) picked-up a ground ball and found himself with space in the attack. He fired a shot that went wide, but Cannon was there to feed Beitel for a quick Red Devil tally, extending the lead to 6-3, with just under five minutes to play in the third quarter.
Hanley came up with another great save but the Devils couldn't capitalize on the other end. Hanley turned the Bullets away again, but a Dickinson penalty gave Gettysburg a man-up opportunity. The junior goaltender was there once more, turning away a man-up attempt.
The Devils scored short-handed on the other end as White finished the fast break, to put the Devils in front, 7-3. Leon made it 8-3, hammering home another assist from Cherry.
Maddalone made a big save as the Devils went man-up, but confusion on the other end led to an offsides call against the Bullets. Maddalone made another stop but the Devils controlled the rebound to maintain possession.
The teams traded man-up opportunities, and Gettysburg capitalized on their attempt, cutting the deficit to 8-4 when Manilla scored off an assist from Derek Ruebling. The Devils were immediately man-down following an illegal body check on the ensuing face-off.
Gettysburg took advantage once again, as Manilla finished a pass from Maddux to make it a three-goal game.
The Devils answered with back-to-back goals to stretch the lead back to five, with 4:14 to play. Cannon scored off a feed from Beitel then returned the favor, assisting Beitel 24 seconds later to put the Devils up, 10-5.
Beitel appeared to score on a diving shot, but was ruled to be in the crease. He did, however, draw a penalty on the play, putting the Devils' man-up unit back on the field with 2:02 remaining in the game. Maddalone made another big save, recording a career-best 15 on the day.
The Devils held on and will look to make their first-ever title defense on Sunday, facing Washington at 1:00 pm.
Cannon scored twice and tallied a pair of assists while Beitel netted a hat-trick to pace the Devil attack. Cherry finished with four assists, handing out helpers on the Devils' first three goals of the game. White and Leon each scored twice as well.
Hanley finished with 10 saves, controlling four ground balls for the Red Devils. Chip Murray (New Canaan, Conn./New Canaan) won five face-offs and controlled five ground balls while Carter Moore (Virginia Beach, Va./Norfolf Academy) came on to win 3-of-5.
The Red Devils improve to 13-3 overall. They advance to Sunday's championship game with host Washington. Opening face-off is scheduled for 1:00 pm in Chestertown, Maryland.