March 21, 2009
QUEENS, N.Y. - Despite a career-best five-goal effort by rookie attackman Harry Kutner, St. John's men's lacrosse team fell 10-9 in overtime to the visiting Lehigh Mountain Hawks Saturday afternoon on DaSilva Memorial Field. Lehigh's win is their second overtime victory this week.
Mountain Hawk senior Ricky Cornetta scored with .07 seconds left to force the No. 18 Red Storm into its first overtime game since April 23, 1994.
With the loss, St. John's falls to 5-2 on the season. Lehigh's record advances to 3-6.
Down for the majority of the game, the Red Storm went on a run in the second half to come from behind and finally take the lead with 6:11 left in the fourth period.
Lehigh took a four-goal lead in the first period before Kutner scored a minute and a half into the second quarter to put the Red Storm on the board.
After Cornetta put one back for the Mountain Hawks, senior Trevor Michaelsen cut the Lehigh lead to three, 5-2, scoring his fourth man-up goal of the season at 11:47. His goal was assisted by fellow senior Drew Schanen.
Kutner scored once more, connecting with senior Jamal Jones, who marked his first assist of the season, with 31 seconds left in the half to tighten the score to 5-3. Coming in from the break, the rookie sunk his third goal of the game, and his first career-hat trick, to bring the Red Storm within one at 13:54 in the third. Lehigh's Kyle Gentile came back three minutes later to extend the Mountain Hawk lead to 6-4 as neither team would score again in the third quarter.
Getting a shot off as he fell to the ground in front of the net, Kutner scored his fourth goal of the game to bring St. John's back within one again, 6-5, with 13:29 left in the game.
Lehigh answered back with a man-up goal from Cameron Lao-Gosney at 12:55, before St. John's went on a three-goal scoring streak led off by senior attackman Bobby Fitton. Assisted by Schanen, Fitton got a quick one past Lehigh goaltender Morgan Haller at 10:29. Freshman Carl Iacona kept the momentum going as he tied the game, 7-7, at 9:58 with a goal that just trickled in past Haller. Positioned about five feet off the crease, senior midfielder Malcolm Miles netted the Red Storm go-ahead goal with just over six minutes left to play.
Cornetta came back for the Mountain Hawks at 5:10 to tie the game at eight each.
Scoreless for the next four minutes of play, as the pressure continued to build, Kutner and Miles teamed up to give St. John's a one-goal lead with 1:13 left on the game clock.
In the final minute of play, senior Dom DeNapoli secured possession for the Red Storm with a face-off win. St. John's called a time out with 50 second left and Lehigh swapped goaltenders for the fourth time. St. John's turned the ball over giving way for a Lehigh clear. Setting up a play after a called time out, Lehigh's Adam Johnston shot the ball which was saved by junior goaltender Gavin Buckley but bounced to Cornetta who sunk the tying goal, forcing the game into overtime.
After the face-off by DeNapoli and the ground ball pick up by junior Reggie Davis, St. John's turned the ball over to give Lehigh the final possession in the extra period. One shot would do it for Brian Bienemann, who sank the winning goal at 3:36 in overtime.
Lehigh won the battle on the turf, winning ground balls (33-28), clears, shots, face-offs and saves. St. John's only got one shot off in the first period of play.
After the two-game week, St. John's will have a full week of rest before returning to conference play with a home game against Rutgers on March 28. The game will be played as part of the Lacrosse Day of Champions, hosted by the Indians Rock Community Foundation at Manhasset High School in Manhasset, N.Y. Face-off is slated for noon.