Army lacrosse advances to Patriot League title game
The Army West Point men's lacrosse team held seventh-ranked Navy to only three goals en route to a 9-3 win on Friday afternoon in the Patriot League Semifinals to advance to Sunday title game at 1 p.m.
It was the fewest goals Navy has scored against Army since the Mids had three in 1947. In tournament history, Colgate was the last team to score only three goals in a game and that was in 2011.
The Black Knights (10-6) were led by its attack duo of Cole Johnson and Connor Cook. Johnson had four points to reach 71 points in 2016 with two goals and two assists, all of which came in the second half. Cook added two goals and an assist for three points, while Austin Colvin had a great game with three points on a goal and two assists.
AJ Barretto was helped out by a stingy defense that held Navy to 19 shots with 12 making it on cage. He had nine saves on the night with three in the first and fourth quarters.
The faceoff game was all Army. The Black Knights won 11-of-15 draws with Grabher winning eight in 11 chances. Alex Daly was 3-for-4 in faceoffs.
Navy (10-4) got goals from Casey Rees, T.J. Hanzsche and Greyson Torain, but couldn't get much going on offense. John Connors stopped nine shots in the loss.
The first half was a defensive battle with a lot of ground balls and turnovers, but Army heading into the break with a 2-0 lead. Jimbo Moore got the scoring started with his 15th of the year. He hit the alley on the left side and was left alone and he buried it. David Symmes added to the lead with 2:45 remaining in the first quarter. The Black Knights outshot the Mids, 22-10, but only found the net five times. The Army defense suffocated the Navy defense in the first half, allowing only four shots on target.
The scoring picked up in the third quarter. Navy got on the board for the first time with Rees scoring in the first minute, but the Black Knights added the next two with Cook and Johnson finding the net and Army had its largest lead at 4-1 with 6:50 left in the frame. The Mids cashed in on a man-up opportunity with Hanzsche scoring his 20th of the season and it was a two-goal game again at 4-2 with 44:3 left in the frame.
That was as close as Navy would get as the Black Knights reeled off the next three goals to build up an 8-2 lead late into the fourth quarter. Jones scored his second on the day with a nice feed from Colvin and then Johnson found the net with 8:33 left in the game for his 34th of the year. Cook finished off the run with a 30-second timer goal with another assist from Colvin. Torain netted the third of the game for Navy, but Danny DeSanti fired a snipe in transition and Army moved onto the championship with a 9-3 win.
The Black Knights outshot Navy, 40-19, and had a 25-20 advantage in shots.
The Patriot League Championship is set for Sunday at 1 p.m. on CBS Sports Network.