WINTER PARK, Fla. – The 12th-ranked Saint Leo men’s lacrosse team opened up their Deep South Conference title defense in dominating fashion as the Lions hung 21 goals on their opponents in a 21-13 win over Rollins College in season-opening action on Saturday afternoon.
The Lions (1-0, 1-0 DSC) were led by George Proechel and Matt Obermeyer, who ripped a game high six goals apiece past Rollins goalie Doug O’Brien. Proechel tacked on two assists to his total for a game-best eight points on the afternoon.
Rollins (0-2, 0-2 DSC) saw hat tricks from Peter Harvey and Austin Ricci, as well as a five point performance from Eric Schmit who tallied two goals and three assists to lead the Tars in scoring. Completing the goal count for the afternoon was Charlie Shelly with two, and Andrew Vossler, Andrew Post, and Justin Wright with one apiece.
O’Brien had a solid day in cage with 11 saves, but faced 50 shots and 32 shots on frame throughout the contest thanks to a tough SLU attack unit. His adversary, Blake Barnett, collected a total of 12 saves after seeing 32 shots from the Tars and 25 shots on cage.
The Lions bit first with Proechel ripping an unassisted shot past O’Brien almost three minutes into the contest, but Schmit connected a pass to Ricci who snuck a shot past Barnett less than two minutes later to put the score at 1-1 with 10:50 remaining in the first quarter.
Saint Leo went on a three goal run, pulling ahead 4-1 with 6:23 to go in the period, but Harvey won the ensuing faceoff and ran the ball down just six seconds later to put another goal on the scoreboard for the Tars.
Saint Leo notched the next goal off of an unassisted shot from Obermeyer with 4:25 remaining in the period, but in replay fashion Harvey again won the resulting faceoff and took it down for a goal eight seconds later to set the score at 5-3 with 4:17 before the first break. Shelly found an assist from James Libutti with 2:06 on the clock, and sent a nicely placed shot past Barnett to put the Tars in a 5-4 deficit at after the end of the first period.
Rollins was unable to carry their first quarter momentum into the second period, and the Lions outscored the Tars 5-1 to enter into the half leading by a score of 10-5. The second half proved to be much like the second quarter, as the Lions found the back of the cage 11 more times, while Rollins was only able to score eight more goals throughout the final two periods.
The Tars trailed in shots 50-32, and ground balls 30-21. Rollins was able to hold the nationally-ranked Lions silent on 6-of-8 man up opportunities, allowing only two SLU goals in man down situations.
Saint Leo will remain on the road as they will make their first of two trips to North Carolina next week. The Lions will first travel to Laurinburg, NC as they face St. Andrew’s Presbyterian College on Friday, February 25th. The game is scheduled to get started at 4:00 p.m.
Portions courtesty of Rollins College Athletic Communications