March 23, 2013

Surging Bucknell Tops Albany with Big Second Half

from press release

ALBANY, N.Y. -- David Dickson posted a career-high seven points with three goals and four assists, and Todd Heritage and Thomas Flibotte pumped in four goals apiece, leading No. 15 Bucknell to a come-from-behind 18-12 victory over No. 20 Albany on Saturday at John Fallon Field. The Bison trailed 7-4 early in the second half, but then poured in 14 goals in the final 14:12 to claim their seventh straight victory.

It was a banner week for the Bison, who knocked off No. 2 Cornell and No. 20 Albany -- two of the highest-scoring teams in the country -- on the road in a five-day span. Bucknell entered the week ranked 15th in the USILA Coaches' Poll and 16th in the Nike/Inside Lacrosse Media Poll, and those rankings figure to rise after the two impressive victories in upstate New York. The Bison are now 8-1 on the season, with four of the eight wins coming against ranked opponents.

Chase Bailey, Peter Burke and Brock Ghelfi added two goals apiece for Bucknell, and faceoff specialistRyan Gutowski had a big day, scoring his first goal of the season while winning 14 of 23 draws with eight ground balls.

Defenders Jackson Place and Alex Spring both collected six ground balls, while Mike Huffner had four and Ben Kellar three. Kyle Feeney stopped eight shots against a prolific Albany (4-3) offense that came in ranked No. 2 nationally in scoring at 14.5 goals per game. The Great Danes opened the season with a 16-15 win at Syracuse. During this winning streak, the Bison have faced three of the top seven highest-scoring teams in the country and kept them all well below their season averages.

Albany led 6-4 at the half and then went up 7-4 on a Miles Thompson goal 36 seconds into the second half. Bucknell's deficit was still three at 9-6 after a Ty Thompson goal at the 9:44 mark of the third quarter. But Gutowski answered back nine seconds later right off the faceoff win, and that ignited the Bison. Bucknell would outscore Albany 6-1 over the rest of the quarter, with the goals coming from five different players.Ghelfi's unassisted marker with 1:40 left in the third put the Bison ahead 12-10, but Lyle and Ty Thompson scored consecutive goals 24 seconds apart in the first minute of the fourth quarter to tie the game back up for the sixth and final time.

It was all Bucknell the rest of the way, however. Dickson's unassisted goal with 12:14 to play gave the Bison a 13-12 lead, then Dickson fed Bailey to make it a two-goal cushion with 8:32 left. Bailey added another important insurance marker with 5:26 to play. Flibotte sandwiched a pair of goals around a Heritage shorthanded tally to finish off the scoring and give Bucknell a season-high 18 goals.

Bucknell outshot Albany 41-35 and forced 28 turnovers. The Bison were a near-perfect 28-for-29 on clears and limited the potent Albany EMO unit to 1-for-5 in man-up situations.

Ty Thompson finished with four goals for Albany, while Miles Thompson had three goals and three assists and Lyle Thompson, the national points leader, had a goal and three assists.

Flibotte upped his team-leading goal total to 25, making him one of the highest-scoring freshmen in the nation. Dickson now has a league-high 29 assists, and in only nine games he is already just two shy of joining the Bucknell single-season top-10.

Bucknell will play its next two games at home, starting Tuesday with another ranked opponent in No. 17 Penn State.


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