Despite having a regular season record of 6-7, the Drexel University men’s lacrosse team did just enough to qualify for the Colonial Athletic Association playoffs. The Dragons did not fail to disappoint in the first round as they beat the 14th ranked team in the country, the University of Massachusetts, in the semifinals by a score of 15-12. Unfortunately, the Dragons’ surprise run fell short the following round, as they lost to 12th ranked Towson University by a score of 16-14.
The semifinal game against UMass took place May 2. Despite quick goals from both teams that resulted in a 1-1 tie midway through the first period, the Dragons rode an offensive hot streak to take a 5-1 lead by the end of the frame and never looked back. Goals were scored by junior Collin Mailman, senior Marshal King, freshman Jack Mulcahy and two from junior Matthew Varian. The Dragons led comfortably throughout the rest of the game; UMass never got closer than three goals. King and Mailman led the Dragons in scoring as they both finished with hat tricks.
Two days later, the Dragons faced off against Towson. The first period was a back and forth battle as Towson only led by one goal. Unfortunately, the Dragons struggled defensively in the second period as Towson outscored the Dragons 7-3. The Dragons found themselves playing catch up for the rest of the game and the Drexel magic ultimately ran out. Despite a strong effort and 5-0 goal advantage in the fourth period, the Dragons could not overcome the deficit and fell to Towson. On a positive note, however, the Dragons lead Towson in faceoffs and ground balls. Drexel won 35 ground balls compares to Towson’s 22, and won 23 faceoffs compared to Towson’s 10.
Despite the loss, Coach Brian Voelker has to be proud of what he’s seen from his squad this year. They were three goals away from making an NCAA tournament appearance and went toe-to-toe with a team that was once ranked first in the nation — Towson University. Leading the Dragons this year was junior Reid Bowering who finished with an unbelievable 47 goals on the season.
The Dragons are hoping next year they will continue to have major production from these key contributors and, with the right mix of luck and skill, make their first appearance in the NCAA tournament since 2014.