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Syracuse 10 - Albany 9: Third quarter breakthrough gives SU the edge

After a dismal first half of play, the Syracuse Orange finally found its footing in the third quarter coming back from a 6-1 deficit for a 10-9, last second win.

NCAA Lacrosse: Quarterfinals- Syracuse-Johns Hopkins Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

The Syracuse Orange defeated the Albany Great Danes 10-9 in another comeback win on Saturday at the Carrier Dome.

There was nothing good about the first half on Saturday, so let’s not even talk about it. Forget it.

Syracuse came out of halftime down 6-3. Midfielder Matt Lane picked up a goal just after four minutes into the third, but it was Jamie Trimboli’s third period goal at 3:26 that really changed the pace and feel of this game. He came down the side of the box, stutter stepped his defender and went high, near-side corner on Albany goalie JD Colarusso to make it a 6-5 game. It was freshman Trimboli’s first career goal and the Orange rallied off of it big time. Less than a minute later it was Nick Mariano drawing the double just off of the goal line extended, finding Brendan Bomberry cutting down the center of the box towards the goal. Bomberry was able to haul it in and shove it past Colarusso while getting pushed into the crease, tying the game at six. 18 seconds later, off of a Syracuse faceoff win, Luke Schwasnick grabbed the groundball took it into the box and found long-pole Austin Fusco who dunked it in, giving SU a one goal lead. Syracuse finished out the third quarter up 7-6. Also of note, Syracuse had three crease violations, two in the third quarter and one in the fourth.

Finally, at 10:10 in the fourth, Albany got its seventh goal of the game on a Sean Eccles goal, breaking a 30:38 minute scoring draught for the Great Danes. Albany backed that up to take the one goal lead a few minutes later when Jakob Patterson hit Bennett Drake for a side arm shot to make it 8-7 Albany. A minute and a half later, however, Jordan Evans hit Brad Voigt on the crease. Voigt, unable to hold on to the pass, put it on the turf where Brendan Bomberry scooped it up and hit Salcido from deep for his first of the year to tie it up again at eight. We saw a lot of both Voigt and Nate Solomon who subbed back and forth throughout the game.

With 4:14 left in the game Bomberry hit Sergio Salcido who buried it for back-to-back goals from the senior captain, 9-8 SU.

But Albany was not done. The Danes tied it up again with Connor Fields, from behind the net finding Sean Eccles up top for the score with 3:43 to go in the game. On the ensuing faceoff, Syracuse technically won it but Cal Paduda turned it over. Albany slowed down the game, the referees eventually starting up the shot clock before Austin Fusco stole a pass out of mid-air and successfully cleared the ball. Once in the box, SU called a timeout to talk about the possession. We saw two shots on the possession before Albany called a timeout with seven seconds remaining after Syracuse backed up a Salcido shot off-goal.

The excitement in this game was palpable but never was it greater than in those last remaining seconds. With 1.9 seconds on the clock Nate Solomon found Nick Mariano, with a man on him, sitting on the wing took a shielded shot around his defender and snuck it past Colarusso and the pipe. An incredible, unlikely goal that could not have come off the crosse of anyone else. And with that Syracuse ended the game, taking another comeback win over the Great Danes.

As I mentioned, the first half was brutal, but I have to say that Syracuse defense played a very good game.

Most impressive was the ground ball and caused turnover side of the game. The SU defenders were aggressive in getting to the ball. Scott Firman looked like a leader on the field while Tyson Bomberry, who had a goal in the first assisted by cousin Brendan Bomberry, was athletic and aggressive in his defensive play. Evan Molloy had some good stops, totaling nine in total, but could not outshine JD Colarusso who had a number of fantastic saves picking up ten all together.

SU may have escaped with one today, but hopefully this was a gut check game. One that the Orange can learn from.