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The Greyhound

Greyhounds race past Lehigh, win Patriot League Title

The No. 1 Loyola University Maryland men’s lacrosse team claimed its first-ever Patriot League Men’s Lacrosse title on Sunday, defeating No. 18 Lehigh University, 16-7, at Ridley Athletic Complex in front of a crowd of 1,841 fans.
Winning the conference title in their inaugural Patriot League season clinches the Greyhounds (14-1 overall) a spot in the 2014 NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Tournament for the third straight season.
Senior goalkeeper Jack Runkel was named the Tournament MVP after recording a remarkable 15 saves and only surrendering five goals in the title game on Sunday. He finished with 26 total saves in the Championships.
Seniors Joe Fletcher, Justin Ward and Brian Schultz joined Runkel on the All-Tournament Team. Schultz finished the Patriot League Championship Game with a game-high five points on three goals and two assists, while Ward finished with four points on a goal and three assists. Ward now has 48 assists on the season, tied for the most single-season assists in Patriot League history, and good for second in the nation right now. Fletcher finished the match with six ground balls.
Senior Matt Sawyer added a team-high four goals, while junior Nikko Pontrello contributed two goals and two assists.
The game was very physical and not at all short on penalties and turnovers. The Greyhounds turned the ball over six times in the first quarter, although they would only turn it over seven more times in the final three periods combined. Both teams combined for 12 penalties.
The Mountain Hawks (13-5) struck first in the game’s second minute on a goal by Patrick Corbett. The Hounds would struggle a bit on offense throughout the first period, but finally cracked the scoreboard with 7:10 remaining in the opening quarter. After a shot by Schultz hit the crossbar, sophomore Tyler Albrecht scooped up the ground ball and fired into the net to open the scoring for Loyola.
The defensive struggle continued, and the game remained tied until just under the five-minute mark, when Ward found Pontrello for the score, to give the Hounds a 2-1 lead, which they would take into the second quarter.
The top-seeded Hounds would finally break through in the second period, scoring four more goals to cap off a 6-0 run, before Lehigh scored with three minutes left in the half to make the score 6-2.
A goal by Schultz with just 13 seconds remaining sent the Greyhounds into the locker room with a 7-3 advantage.
The Mountain Hawks started strong coming out of halftime with a goal by Kurtis Kaunas with 13:47 remaining in the quarter. However, the Greyhounds would close out the third period with three more goals by Sawyer, Schultz and senior Kevin Ryan, sending Loyola into the final quarter with a 10-4 lead and the Patriot League trophy in plain sight.
The Hounds continued their dominance in the final quarter, completing the 16-7 victory and resulting in a Gatorade bath for Head Coach Charley Toomey. Nonetheless, Coach Toomey and his squad realize there is still work to be done heading into next Saturday’s annual duel against Johns Hopkins at noon.
“That’s what this team does so well,” Toomey said. “They move forward very quickly and don’t think about the last accomplishment, but they start focusing on the next one. We know we’ve got a bear on our hands at Ridley next week, so we’re looking forward to a good week of preparation and being the best team we can be next Saturday.”

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Greyhounds race past Lehigh, win Patriot League Title