PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The Providence College men’s lacrosse team was edged by Marquette University on Saturday, May 6 in the BIG EAST Championship game, 10-9. The Friars concluded the 2017 season with a 10-7 overall record. The Marquette Golden Eagles improved to 8-7 overall and claim their second-consecutive BIG EAST Tournament title.
Providence opened the first quarter with an impressive defensive performance; the Friars held the Golden Eagles scoreless while Marquette allowed two goals. Ryan Nawrocki (Smithtown, N.Y.) and Joshua Keller (Grand Rapids, Mich.) each registered goals during the first quarter. Nawrocki beat Blazer high and inside the near pipe at 10:23 in the first quarter. Keller then beat a Marquette defenseman to bury an upper left goal (3:17).
Marquette took the lead in the second quarter on four-consecutive goals to earn a 4-2. Golden Eagles’ Grant Preisler (12:52), Andy DeMichiei (11:46), Ryan McNamara (10:12) and Tanner Thomson (6:10) registered goals.
Brendan Kearns (Wantagh, N.Y.) recorded the lone Friar goal of the quarter (2:44) off of a loose ball rebound to slip it past Blazer. The Friars trailed the Golden Eagles by one goal at halftime, 4-3.
Tate Boyce (Matthews, N.C.) recorded six saves on the half to Cole Blazer’s eight.
Providence and Marquette traded goals throughout the third quarter. Keller registered his second goal of the game and evened the score 30 seconds into the third quarter to knot the score, 4-4. Marquette’s Griffin Connor responded at 13:07 to push the score, 5-4.
Providence reclaimed the lead with 10:30 left on clock on back-to-back goals from Ryan Schaffer (Plano, Texas) and Nawrocki. Schaffer converted just outside the crease from Kearns at 11:09 to knot the score, 5-5. Kearns assisted Nawrocki on his second goal of the game to give the Friars a 6-5 lead. Marquette’s Thomson answered to even the score 6-6 with 7:19 remaining in the third quarter.
Marquette’s Joseph Dunn slipped a shot past Boyce outside the crease with 13:21 remaining in the fourth quarter to take the lead, 7-6. Kearns struck back at 10:32 on an impressive offensive effort to even the score, 7-7.
Marquette responded to score three-consecutive goals with under 10 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter. Preisler gave Marquette an 8-7 edge 8:23 remaining. Kyran Clarke gave the Golden Eagles a two-goal advantage with 5:49 left, 9-7. McNamara scored his second goal of the game with 4:04 remaining in the game to give the Golden Eagles their largest lead (10-7).
Schaffer cut the Golden Eagle’s lead to one goal with 1:25 remaining in the fourth quarter. He netted back-to-back shots against Blazer at 1:44 and 1:25, respectively (10-9).
The Golden Eagles held off the Friars down the stretch and earned the league’s automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament by virtue of their tournament crown.
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