Feb. 23, 2009

Courtesy of Denver

ALBANY, N.Y. – Junior Charley Dickenson (Dallas, Texas) led the No. 18 University of Denver men’s lacrosse team with three goals and two assists in a 10-9 defeat of No. 13 Albany on Saturday afternoon at John Fallon Field to hand the Great Danes their first loss of the season.


“It was a great team effort today,” said head coach Jamie Munro. “Pete played a great game in the cage for us today and our defense really played tough. I am very proud of the poise our offense showed and how they responded after last week’s tough loss.”


The Pioneers (1-1) snapped a 6-6 deadlock with a pair of goals in the last minute of the third quarter.  Senior attacker Cliff Smith (Surrey, B.C.) moved around a long-stick midfielder and bounced a shot into the right side of the net with 38.7 seconds remaining in the period.  Dickenson then drove from behind the cage and scored from the left with one tick left on the clock.


After Albany (0-1) closed the gap to 8-7 on a behind-the-back shot by Brian Caufield, the Pioneers stretched their advantage to a three-goal cushion.  Senior Joey Murray (Denver, Colo.) tallied his third goal of the game when he spun to his right shoulder and sent a blast into the upper right corner.  Dickenson then faked high and went low on a drive from behind the net with 6:32 to play.


The Great Danes closed to within one goal three minutes later when Dave Brock scored twice, draining a 15-yard shot from the right point and followed one minute and 44 seconds later off a pass from midfielder Mark Cometti.  The play originated in the defensive end when the Great Danes forced a turnover with a double-team.


Albany had two excellent chances to force overtime, but the Pioneers’ goalkeeper Peter Lowell (Freeport, Maine) was up to the challenge with two of his 13 saves.  Lowell stopped Brock’s behind-the-back attempt with one minute remaining after the Great Danes once again forced a miscue by doubling the ball.  The Great Danes’ Corey Small came open in the middle of the field with 17 seconds on the clock, but Lowell thwarted the senior’s blast from six yards in front of the cage to preserve the road win.


The Pioneers, who were coming off a 20-7 loss to nationally-ranked North Carolina in their opener one week ago, leaped to a 4-1 lead in the second quarter.  Freshman Alex Gajic’s (Burnaby, British) extra-man goal from left of the crease gave his team that three-goal cushion.


Albany rattled off three unanswered in the third period to go ahead 5-4.  Small, who had three goals and one assist, scored from the top of the crease with a man-advantage, before Caufield put his team ahead from the middle of the zone after a restart.  Murray and Dickenson netted a pair of unassisted goals to help the Pioneers regain the lead.


Denver returns to action next Saturday, Feb. 28 as they host Sacred Heart at the Peter Barton Lacrosse Stadium at 1:30 p.m. It is the Pioneers’ home opener.