May 6, 2009

Courtesy of Springfield College.

Springfield, Mass. - Behind a record-setting performance by Jake Beebe, the Springfield College men's lacrosse team throttled visiting Mount Ida, 21-4, in an NCAA Division III Men's Lacrosse Tournament First Round Game on Wednesday evening.

The story of the game was Beebe, as the senior attackman broke an 18-year old NCAA Tournament record for points in a game. In tonight's game, Beebe poured in seven goals and five assists for a record-breaking total of 12 points. The previous mark was held by Rich Franz of Ohio Wesleyan, who tallied 11 points in 1991 for Ohio Wesleyan in a win over Washington & Lee. Beebe had flirted with Franz's record last season in the first round when he registered 10 points in a 17-2 win over Kean University.

"It's awesome. I'm very pleased. But I'm even more pleased with how we played tonight," said Beebe. "It seemed like we had seven goals before the blink of an eye. It seemed like we had the ball the entire first quarter, and were able to be in total control. We've had a great year, winning the Pilgrim League, going on to the NCAA Tournament, and now winning an NCAA First-Round game. I hope we can keep it going now at Cortland on Saturday."

With the victory, the Pride advance to the second round and will travel to Cortland for a game on Saturday. Springfield and Cortland matched up in the second round of last year's NCAA Tournament, with the Red Dragons prevailing, 12-9.

The Pride now stand at 12-6 on the year, while the Mustangs' season comes to a close with a 13-7 record.

Springfield dominated nearly every statistical category -- as it outshot the visitors, 72-34; winning the ground ball battle, 55-28; winning 18-of-27 face-offs, and going 21-for-23 on clear attempts. The goals came fast and furious for the Pride in the opening stanza as it netted seven goals in a 7:04 span to take complete control.

"I think we came out too nervous in the first quarter. I kept on telling them to relax, but easier said than done," said Mount Ida head coach Andrew Fink. "It was a case of trying to catch the big guy sleeping, but it just didn't happen tonight. We tried everything, every option we had in the book. We used three goalies, but we couldn't get it going. We've been in the NCAA's three years in a row, but now we have to figure out a way to get back here and do better. I was pleased with our effort. Springfield is a good team. I would not be surprised if they gave Cortland a good battle."

Joe Heney opened up the scoring 2:15 into the contest after he took a feed from Beebe and blasted a shot into the lower corner of the cage. Almost one minute later, Joe Macchi dodged to his right and fired an unassisted strike for SC's second goal. Beebe and Kyle Gable each found the back of the net, before an unusual goal forced a Mount Ida timeout. Springfield longstick midfielder Pete Sessa took a feed from fellow longpole, John Ferrell, turned, jumped, and fired a shot past Mustang goalie Justin Famiglietti to make it a 5-0 contest. Unassisted markers from Pilgrim League Rookie of the Year Mike Delia and Shawn Runyon gave the hosts a 7-0 advantage after one quarter of play.

"I hope we were able to gain some confidence tonight against Mount Ida. Now we have Cortland to look forward to," said Springfield head coach Keith Bugbee. "They are a really good team, and we'll need to play very well to be in it. It's certainly a great environment to play in and be a part of."

Springfield poured in another seven goals in the second half as it scored the first 14 goals of the game. Beebe and Cavanaugh both fired home a pair of goals in the second quarter to pace the Springfield attack. Mount Ida finally scored its only goal of the first half with 35 seconds remaining. Derek Broughton took a feed from Kevin Mulvey in transition and netted the Mustangs first goal of the game.

The Pride pumped in the first five goals of the second half as it extended its lead to 18 goals. A pair of Paul Battipaglia goals sandwiched a Beebe man-up goal to close out the third quarter scoring.

Beebe tied the record with a goal after a terrific move as he split two defenders for his seventh goal of the game with 10:04 left in the contest. He then broke the record as he delivered a perfect pass to Gable for his fifth assist of the game just 12 seconds later. A man-up goal from Matthew Savage gave the Mustangs their fourth goal of the game and proved the be the final goal of the game.

Mount Ida used three goalies in the game, with James McAllister proving to have the best performance. Playing the entire second half, he posted 15 saves, including several terrific stops. The game got chippy down the stretch as there were six penalties in the fourth quarter. The two teams combined for 20 penalties in the game, including 13 coming from the Pride.

The Pride's defense simply blanketed one of the top offensive teams in the country. Mount Ida entered the game ranked second in the country in goals per game with just under 18. Shadowed by Sam Burrell throughout the game, Mount Ida's Brett Conley only had one point. Conley entered the game ranked sixth in the entire country in points per game with 4.89 per contest.

Tom Albano continued his sensational year as he recorded 12 saves in just over 45 minutes between the pipes, allowing just three goals. Matt Cipolla came in for the final 14-plus minutes and made five stops while allowing one goal. Burrell continued to shut down opponents as he caused four turnovers in the game to go along with four ground balls. Chris Jez went 14-for-21 from the "X" and added 10 ground balls in the victory. Jason Farrell added seven ground balls of his own for SC.