Ballantyne's Day: F&M Dispatches Dickinson
from press release
CARLISE, Pa. – Will Ballantyne and Michael Bossidy combined for eight points to lead Franklin & Marshall to an 11-9 victory over Dickinson in the semifinals of the Centennial Conference (CC) Men's Lacrosse Championship Wednesday evening.
With the win, the Diplomats (13-4) earned a trip to the CC Finals for the second straight year and will travel to sixth-ranked Washington, a 20-7 winner over Gettysburg, on Saturday for a 1:00 p.m. contest for a chance to win their first-ever CC Crown and 10th overall conference title.
Ballantyne picked up his first goal to put the Diplomats up early when he buried a pass from Philip Gamble 2:17 into action for a 1-0 F&M advantage. Dickinson (9-7) answered and dominated the remainder of the first quarter with a 4-0 run and took a 4-1 lead at the end of the first.
The Diplomats answered with two to come within a goal. Chad Gamble netted the first goal when took a Bossidy pass from 15-yards out and found the net before Bossidy scooped up a ground ball in front of the cage and bounced the ball through to bring F&M within one, 4-3, at 12:35. Brett Parker put the Red Devils up two and Ballantyne brought F&M back to within a point with a goal off a nifty dodge move around a defender.
Parker struck again for Dickinson with 1:53 left in the second, but Billy Kempner brought the Diplomats within a goal with a tally with just 19 seconds left for a 6-5 halftime score.
Ballantyne picked up his third goal when he fired the ball from seven yards out to tie the game at 6-6 early in the third. The teams traded goals the remainder of the third quarter to make 8-8 heading into the final frame. Ballantyne scored both goals for the Diplomats. The first came during a fast break transition when Chad Gamble found Ballantyne for the score and Kempner fed Ballantyne for the second with just 39 seconds left in the quarter.
Parker put Dickinson back up a point early in the fourth, but the Diplomats countered and control the majority of the final frame, finished with three unanswered goals to secure the win. Philip Gamble fired the ball home from eight yards out to tie the game at 9-9 at 6:57 and Evan Bakst fed Bossidy from behind the net 56 seconds later to put the Diplomats up for good.
Bossidy put the last point on the board at 1:24 when Ballantyne came away with a ground ball and found Bossidy crossing in front of the goal to make it 11-9. The Red Devils had two good chances in the final minute of action, but Cameron Setian stood tall in goal, turning away one of those shots.
Ballantyne finished with five goals and an assist while Bossidy struck three times with one helper. Philip Gamble had two assists and a goal while brother Chad and Kempner both finished with a goal and an assist.
Carlos Pelaez ended with two caused turnovers and collected two ground balls to pace the defense and Mike Sanzone finished with six ground balls and Wesley Rhudy along with Nick Wells both finished with three ground balls for the Diplomats.
Setian improved to 13-4 with nine saves and Nick Baxter took the loss with 10 stops.
The Diplomats caused 20 turnovers, held a 34-24 advantage in ground balls and went 15-for-18 in clears in the contest.
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