After entering its final regular season America East game in need of a win and a Stony Brook loss, the Binghamton men’s lacrosse team got the help it needed from a 21-12 Albany victory over the Seawolves (7-8, 2-3 America East). But the Bearcats (5-9, 1-4 AE) lost a 10-9 heartbreaker at UMBC, and failed to qualify for the conference tournament for the second straight year.
UMBC freshman midfield Pat Young scored his fourth goal of the game with 1:18 left to break a 9-9 tie, and the Retrievers (6-7, 3-2 AE) held on to enter the tournament as the No. 3 seed.
“This game was back-and-forth all afternoon,” Binghamton head coach Scott Nelson said, according to BUBearcats.com. “We fought hard and were there down the stretch, but didn’t make the necessary plays. It all comes down to them executing down the stretch and unfortunately we didn’t.”
Binghamton sophomore midfield Emmett O’Hara opened scoring with an unassisted goal at the 11:18 mark of the first quarter, and the two teams exchanged goals for the next 26 minutes. BU junior attack Matt Springer netted three goals during that stretch, and junior attack Brandon Planck and junior midfield Kelly Donigan each scored once.
After Young’s goal at the 5:07 mark of the third quarter tied the game at six, Binghamton junior midfield Michael Antinozzi and Springer recorded back-to-back goals to give Binghamton an 8-6 lead, its largest advantage of the game. But UMBC senior attack Joe Lustgarten found the back of the net with one second left in the period to bring the Retrievers within one.
Young and senior attack Matt Gregoire netted back-to-back goals in the first 6:05 of the fourth quarter to give UMBC a 9-8 lead. O’Hara tied the game with an unassisted goal with 3:29 left, but then Young put the Retrievers ahead for good.
Springer scored four goals, finishing the season with a program-record 36. Only three other America East players averaged more than Springer’s 2.57 goals per game.
UMBC outshot Binghamton 35-27 and held a 33-30 advantage in ground balls. The Retrievers also won 13-of-22 faceoffs.
With the field for the conference tournament set, UMBC is scheduled to face No. 2 seed Hartford on Thursday afternoon at Stony Brook’s Kenneth P. LaValle Stadium for a spot in the championship game. The winner will face either No. 1 seed Albany or No. 4 Stony Brook for the America East’s berth to the NCAA tournament.