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Towson men's lacrosse doesn't overwhelm Mount St. Mary's, but wins 7-4

EMMITSBURG — The Towson men's lacrosse team won't win any style points for Friday's game at Mount St. Mary's, but in the end, the only points that mattered were the ones on the scoreboard.

Unable to overwhelm a tougher-than-expected Mountaineers squad, the No. 17 Tigers finally snapped a 3-3 tie late in the third quarter with three consecutive goals over a 5:19 span to pull away with a 7-4 victory at Waldron Family Stadium here.

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Towson improved to 3-1 for the first time in coach Shawn Nadelen's four-year tenure and for the first time since 2005. Friday's win wasn't pretty, but that hardly mattered to sophomore attackman Joe Seider (Hereford).

"We don't need to go out and drop 20 goals," said Seider, who scored a game-high three goals. "As long as we get the W, that's all that really matters."

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Nadelen suspected that getting past Mount St. Mary's would not an easy task. On Tuesday the Mountaineers rallied from a five-goal deficit in the third quarter before falling, 11-10, against Delaware — a rival of the Tigers from the Colonial Athletic Association.

"It goes in the win column," he said. "That's what we came up here for, and I told the guys that, and they accomplished it. We knew Mount St. Mary's was going to play hard. They came out hot against Delaware. Fell down by five goals in that third quarter and ended up losing 11-10 and had an opportunity to win it. So we knew this was going to be a tough team, a tough game."

No team led by more than a goal through the first 40 minutes, and Mountaineers junior midfielder Evan Gormley's bounce shot from the left wing past redshirt junior goalkeeper Tyler White (nine saves) knotted the score at 3-3 with 3:32 left in the third quarter — the third tie of the game.

That's when Towson responded. From the right wing, redshirt senior midfielder Andrew Hodgson (one goal and two assists) centered the ball to Seider, who dodged left and right in the right alley before firing a turnaround shot past freshman goalie Matt Vierheller 63 seconds after Gormley's tally.

Hodgson got his lone goal when he sprinted down the right alley and winged a shot under the crossbar to give the Tigers a 5-3 lead with two seconds left in the period.

Sophomore midfielder Ryan Drenner (Westminster) capped the run when he took senior defenseman Nick Firman around the right post, spun back to his right, and whipped a high shot past Vierheller with 12:10 remaining in the fourth quarter.

Seider said the offense stopped settling for the long-range shots they had taken in the first half and moved the ball to force Mount St. Mary's to adjust.

"I think in the second half, we were really working the ball around and trying to find the openings and the cutters and the crease guys," he said. "I think that's what really opened it up."

Towson's offense was also stymied in part by Vierheller, who turned aside a career-best 17 shots, including 11 in the first half.

"My defense helped me give them outside shots, which really started to get my confidence up," he said. "I got a couple lucky saves off the pipe, and everything just kind of kept rolling that way. My confidence got sky high in the middle of that game. My defense gave me shots that I could save, and that's all I really ask for."

Junior midfielder Justin Gosnell (Havre de Grace) led the Mountaineers with two goals, but they finished the game without an assist. Coach Tom Gravante pointed out that the Tigers held then-No. 5 Johns Hopkins and Georgetown to five and six goals, respectively.

"This is a good team," Gravante said of Towson. "They held Hopkins to five, and they've got some guys that can shoot the lights out. … We knew that their defense was going to be more organized and stingy."

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No. 4 North Carolina 12, No. 1 Denver 10: Tate Jozokos gave the host Tar Heels (5-0) their first lead in the third quarter, and they held on to defeat the Pioneers.

Jozokos' go-ahead goal came with 11:21 left in the third quarter for a 7-6 lead. North Carolina's 6-2 run in the third quarter built a 9-7 lead going into the fourth quarter, when Denver (3-1) rallied. Connor Cannizzaro, a transfer from Maryland, scored on an extra-man-opportunity with 2:47 left in the game to cut Carolina's lead to 11-10.

The Pioneers pulled their goalie, and Tar Heels defenseman Jake Bailey scored an empty-net goal with 1:03 left for the final score.

No. 16 Marquette 12, Detroit 6: The Golden Eagles (4-0) had a season high in goals and rolled against the Titans (2-2) at Bellarmine.

Conor Gately had a hat trick to lead the Golden Eagles.

Baltimore Sun staff contributed to this article.

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