March 13, 2010

Yale Stays Perfect With 8-6 Win at Lehigh

MAHONY LEADS BLUE WITH 4 GOALS

BETHLEHEM, Pa. – Neither heavy rain nor cold winds could prevent the No. 17 Yale men’s lacrosse team from moving its record to 4-0 today at Frank Banko ’41 Field. Gregory Mahony had four goals as the Bulldogs held off a late comeback in an 8-6 win at Lehigh.

The Elis, playing for the first time ever at Lehigh, had the advantage in shots (31-17) and ground balls (33-30).

Max Rodman, the senior midfielder who has been outstanding in his first season as the primary Yale faceoff man, won 11 of 18 battles and set the tone that helped his team remain undefeated.  Rodman now has won 65 percent of his faceoffs this season.

Dante Fantoni, who led the Mountain Hawks (2-4) with three goals and an assist, scored off the opening faceoff. That, however, was the last lead the home team would see.

Mahony got the next two before Brian Douglass (2 goals) and captain Brendan Gibson (2 goals, 1 assist) tallied to give the Blue a 4-1 lead early in the second quarter. Douglass now leads the Elis with 10 goals while Gibson is third with eight.

Yale dominated time of possession in the first half, protecting the ball better than the Patriot League team in the tough weather conditions, and took a 4-2 lead into halftime.  David DiMara’s tally early in the second half cut the margin to one, but consecutive goals by Gibson and Douglass moved the advantage to 6-3 in the third.

The home team, which mounted another comeback with three straight goals, did not go away. Fantoni notched two of the three and his Mountain Hawks were getting breaks off Yale mistakes.

“Lehigh did an excellent job riding us, and we got away from what we normally do on the clear,” said Yale head coach Andy Shay. “I give them credit for getting tough goals out of the riding game.”

When Cameron Lao-Gosney got one past Falcone to tie things at 6-6 at 7:58 of the fourth, the Elis did not fold. Mahony, the sophomore midfielder who has seven goals, took over from there. He scored off a Matt Miller assist at 6:44 for what turned out to be the game-winner and then took a feed from Matt Fuchs and sent a shot past Dan Carr (12 saves) at 3:35.

“It was a tough day to get a lot out of ball movement, but Greg [Mahony] did a great job getting his shots.  He stepped up to break the tie when we needed him. We talked about having energy for 60 minutes, and we were able to pull it off.  There was plenty of energy on the bench when they tied it up, and we were able to get the next play,” said Shay.    

The Bulldog defense and Falcone stepped up and prevented a third comeback. The junior goalie had three of his six saves in the fourth.

“The conditions were awful, but we talked about it at practice and before the game.  I don’t think it was a factor in the game.  I thought both teams played very hard and did a great job ignoring the downpour,” said Mahony.  

Shay was also impressed with the play of his primary team leader.

"Brendan Gibson came up with some huge groundballs and great possessions when we needed the ball.  He had a couple huge goals, but played very hard when the ball hit the ground.  He’s our captain, and he led us in effort today," said Shay.

 

Recap filed by Steve Conn, Yale Sports Publicity Director

Gregory Mahony image by Sam Rubin '95

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