BEREA, Ohio – The Baldwin Wallace University men's lacrosse team braved the elements to defeat Allegheny (Pa.) College by a final score of 9-7 in a non-conference matchup on Tressel Field in George Finnie Stadium.
Berea resembled the likes of a winter wonderland, as BW (1-1) was able to endure a relentless downpour of snow to grind out its first victory of the season against an Allegheny (0-1) squad that was competing in its inaugural men's lacrosse game.
The Yellow Jackets' offense was led by freshman attacker Kyler Byerly (Pittsburgh, Pa./North Allegheny), who scored two goals and one assist for a career-high three points, while corralling two ground balls. Junior midfielder Ethan Miller (Delaware) also added on to his team-leading points total with a goal and an assist in the victory. Meanwhile, junior All-OAC and Academic All-OAC defender Matthew Rodenhouse (Pittsford, N.Y./Mendon) grabbed a career and game-high six ground balls to go along with two caused turnovers.
In his first collegiate start, after an impressive outing in relief during BW's season opener, was freshman goalkeeper Joe Storner (Louisville, Ky./St. Xavier), who stopped 13 of his 20 total shots faced, on route to securing his first career victory.
History was made in the opening two minutes of the game, as Gators freshman midfielder Patrick Hogan netted the Allegheny men's lacrosse program's first ever goal to open the scoring in tonight's snowy affair. However, the Gators' opening lead would not last long as BW responded with a goal from senior attacker Drew Braden (Wooster), with an assist being credited to Miller. The Gators were able to notch another goal at the 3:01 mark of the first quarter to regain its one-goal lead.
With some stifling defense and some traction issues on both sides, the two adversaries failed to generate any offense in the second quarter's first 13 minutes. The Yellow Jackets ended the drought with two goals to end the first half. Sitting at a 2-2 tie with the clock winding down in the closing moments of the frame, BW senior midfielder Austin Routzong (Hilliard/Bradley) got his first goal of the campaign, with just four seconds remaining to put the Yellow Jackets up a goal before the intermission.
After surrendering a tying goal at the 12:14 mark, BW netted a pair of scores in a span of 1:06 from the freshman attacker duo of Bylery and Luke Schroedl (Milwaukee, Wis./Waukesha West) to pull ahead by two. However, Allegheny countered right back with a pair of goals of their own to tie the game at 5-5. Then, the Yellow Jackets' Byerly was able to pot his second goal of the quarter with no time left on the clock, to regain a one-goal cushion heading into the final quarter.
With the excitement of a buzzer-beating goal spilling into the next period, BW cashed in on three consecutive goals in the first three minutes of the fourth quarter to take a sizeable lead. Unsatisfied with the thought of spoiling their program's debut, the Gators began their attempt at mounting a comeback. Allegheny managed to net two goals, but that was all they could muster in the closing minutes of regulation. The Yellow Jackets held their ground and their lead, shins-deep in snow, to earn their first victory of the campaign.
BW returns to action on Saturday, February 29, when they travel to Grove City, Pennsylvania to take on Grove City (Pa.) College for a non-conference matchup at 1:00 p.m. on Robert E. Thorne Field.