Drexel’s men’s lacrosse team is quickly digging itself into a big hole. While on the way down, the team is finding out there are multiple ways to lose a lacrosse game. No matter how frequent, the ultimate deficit ends up being one.
The team dropped two more one-goal games last week, bringing its record to 2-5 for this thus far disappointing season. Each of the two games were uniquely frustrating, despite the losses coming in two different ways.
On the road against Bryant University March 10, the Dragons fell 7-6 after blowing a five-goal lead. Getting on the board within the game’s first five seconds on a Robert Church goal, Drexel went up 4-0 about 12 minutes into the game when Nick Trizano scored his third goal of the year. Kyle Bergman’s fifth goal of the year marked the Dragons’ first of the half, thus producing the comfortable lead.
That lead would last for much of the third, but it quickly went from a comfortable one to a tight one. This, after the Bulldogs scored three goals in about a one-minute span, started with roughly 2 1/2 minutes left. The last of the three quick goals came on the man advantage from Max Weisenberg’s stick.
After scoring only one goal in the last 35 minutes, Drexel made it a three-goal game again when Church assisted Brandon Glynn for his second goal of the game.
Alex Zomerfeld started the Bryant comeback when he set up Weisenberg with his second assist. Zomerfeld then scored one of his own to tie the game. To cap his scoring off, as well as the game’s scoring, he completed the comeback with the game-winning goal with 5:25 remaining.
Drexel was unable to capitalize on the man advantage it had, but Bryant goaltender Jameson Love kept them out of the net and behind in the game. He again kept the ball out of the net in the game’s final possession, a last-second attempt by the Dragons, to protect the lead.
Bringing a halt to the offensive production, while opening the floodgates on defense, Drexel just stopped making plays.
“We just didn’t make enough plays to win,” head coach Brian Voelker said. “We played well on offense for the first quarter but not the rest of the game. We played great on [defense] until the end of the third then couldn’t get stops.”
One of the keys to the game? According to Voelker, they did not win enough faceoffs. That was especially the case in the second half, when Bryant took eight of the draws.
Drexel’s sluggish play continued into its next game. Playing against Bucknell University March 13 at Vidas Field, the Dragons this time were the ones in the 4-0 hole. Nick Gantsoudes scored each of the Bison’s first two goals, both unassisted.
Nearly 10 minutes into the game, Aaron Prosser got Drexel on the board. Bucknell led 5-2 at the end of the first quarter, and Drexel was able to tie things up going into halftime. Ben McIntosh had two of the Dragons’ goals that period, bringing his total on the season up to six.
In what ended up being the difference, the Bison scored three goals in the third quarter, compared to Drexel’s two. Chase Bailey and Billy Eisenreich had two points that quarter, each chipping in with both a goal and an assist.
In the final 90 minutes, Drexel got back to work, trailing by three. They would only get two of those back, the last of which came on Prosser’s third goal of the contest.
Again, they would come up short. The game played out almost conversely as the Bryant game.
“Almost the opposite of Bryant,” Voelker said. “We started slow. Our [defense] struggled, especially early.”
But again, it was a one-goal loss. Four of their five losses have resulted in them coming up one goal short. Why do they keep coming up short?
“Those teams made the plays, and we didn’t,” Voelker explained. “We’ve had opportunities but haven’t capitalized. We’ve generated a lot of shots but haven’t buried them.”
They’ve come close to burying teams, like the multiple leads they held against the University of Virginia, and most recently against Bryant. Despite the deflating feelings of blowing leads and coming up short, the Dragons are still confident in their chances to win.
“We know we’re capable of beating good teams, now we have to go do it,” Voelker declared.
Their first chance to “go do it” will be March 17, when they head south toe Emmitsburg, Md. to take on Mount St. Mary’s University at “The Mount.”
The Dragons will look to continue to bring their effort and play a complete game.
“We’re all upset at our record, but the guys are sticking together and working hard,” Voelker said. “We didn’t win [Wednesday], but we fought to the end. If we keep up that kind of effort, things will work out.”