SAINT LEO, Fla. - The No. 10-Ranked Saint Leo University lacrosse team (7-2) had their seven game winning streak snapped as regional opponent No.7-ranked Limestone College escaped with an 11-10 victory Saturday afternoon at University Field.
Kyle Marceau was a bright spot for the Lions as he led all scorers with four goals and three assists while his teammate, Luke Baruch, tallied two goals and an assist. The Lions also had four others chip in with goals including, Ben Brigham, Evan Mills, Chris Storrie and Mark Dargon. Ryan Groat led all Saint Leo players with five ground balls while Jake McGuinness collected four. Mike Del Buono was clutch in the face-off portion of the game, winning 12 of 17 battles.
SLU delivered the first blow of the game as Marceau delivered the first of his four tallies less than two minutes into the game. Limestone answered the Lions challenge with a goal, also just seconds later. It was a trend that continued for much of the game as both Dargon’s and Baruch’s goals were responded with Saints tallies.
At the beginning of the second quarter the Lions snapped the tied affair as Baruch capitalized on an opportunity just 57 seconds into the second quarter. SLU expanded their lead to two when Evan Mills found an open crease in the goal to make the score 5-3. The Lions could not convert the rest of the period leaving the door open for Limestone. Limestone took advantage of this lull in the Lions normally heavy attack to score two goals heading into intermission.
The Saints momentum carried over to the third quarter where Limestone took their first lead of the game, 6-5 just two minutes into the quarter. Marceau then equalized the game when we smashed the back of the cage for his second goal of the night just six seconds later.
Unfortunately for the SLU faithful, Limestone broke through with the go-ahead goal at the 11:13 mark of the quarter. It was a lead the Saint never surrendered.
With the score 7-6 in favor of the Saints, Marceau did all he could to keep the Green and Gold in contention, tallying two goals and an assist during the final fifteen minutes.
Marceau netted the first of his two at the beginning of the quarter to tie the game 7-7. But Limestone found the net the next two times to make the score 9-7 with under 10 minutes to play. Marceau refused to be held down though as he got the Lions back to within one at 9-8. However, the Saints answered with two more goals, including the eventual game-winner at the 8:57 mark of the fourth.
Still, the Lions did not quit and made the game exciting until the least second. SLU chipped away at the lead eventually cutting it to one, 11-10 as Brigham and Storrie buried goals into the back of the net.
Upon the next face-off and just one goal with under two minutes to play, the Lions were unable to gain possession of the ball. Limestone proceeded to milk the clock the final two minutes, not allowing Saint Leo an opportunity to score.
The loss marks the Lions first in their last eight contests.
The Lions were outshot on the day 32-27, but did have six more team ground balls (30-24) and won 10 more face-offs than their opponent. One big blow to SLU’s chances came when the Lions were a man up and Limestone connected on one their chances. That one goal eventually proved to be the difference.
After playing seven games in 21 days, the Lions have an extended break before they head back up to North Carolina to Deep South opponent and rival Mars Hill College. The Friday, March 27 match-up is set to begin at 7:00 pm on the Mars Hill campus.