May 3, 2014

Ithaca Takes Down St. John Fisher

from press release

ITHACA, N.Y. – The 16th-ranked Ithaca College men's lacrosse team (14-4) secured the 2014 Empire 8 championship Saturday afternoon defeating visiting St. John Fisher (12-5), 10-6, at Higgins Stadium. It was Ithaca's third Empire 8 championship in program history and first since 2008. Ithaca, who snapped Fisher's eight-game winning streak, will learn its first-round opponent during the NCAA selection show Sunday at 10 p.m. on ncaa.com.

The Bombers return to the NCAA Championships for the 12th time. It is their first appearance since earning the E8 automatic bid in 2008 when they advanced to the semifinal round.

Ithaca sophomore goalkeeper Scott Sidnam was named the 2014 Empire 8 Championship Tournament MVP. Sidnam made 11 stops in the Bombers' semifinal victory over Stevens Wednesday and eight saves against the Cardinals. He was joined on the all-tournament team by teammates Brandon Henne, Eli Gobrecht and Ryan Burns. St. John Fisher was represented by Mike Blood, Jeff Wester and Jamie Campagna. Collin Clark and Drew Simoneau were Nazareth's honorees and Austin Boyd and Michael Maroon represented Stevens.

Ithaca held Fisher scoreless in the first quarter en route to a 5-0 lead mid-way through the second period. It wasn't until 7:10 that Henne scored to break the 0-0 stalemate. The Cardinals netted back-to-back goals, but freshman John Januszkiewicz added two of his own in a span of seven seconds for a 7-2 gap at 4:15. Fisher scored a man-up goal with 16 ticks lingering on the clock for a 7-3 score at intermission.

The third quarter featured five scores, while the fourth had one lone goal to go with six penalties. Ithaca scored the first at 12:45. Fisher snuck within 8-5 at 5:39, goals that junior James Manilla and sophomore Michael Walker rewrote minutes later. Fisher's Wester finalized all scoring in the fourth with a goal at 4:46.

Ithaca laced off 40 shots to Fisher's 25, though the Cardinals edged Ithaca, 33-29, in ground balls. The Bombers won 13 of 20 faceoffs. Senior Brandon Henne went 12-for-17 on the day in the category, while adding a game-best six ground balls, scoring twice and dishing out one assist.

Januszkiewicz and Burns had a pair of goals each, while Walker and senior Joe Perkins each tallied one and had two assists. Manilla, who leads the team in assists, had a trio on the day in addition to one score. Senior Pat Slawta accounted for Ithaca's other goal.

Gobrecht and junior Jimmy Ryan each had two caused turnovers.

Wester led the Cardinals with four points on a hat trick and one assist. Senior Brett Farrell had one and one, while freshman Tim Wagner and junior Kevin DeOrdio each recorded one score. Senior David Haseley dished out one assist. Wester and junior Paul Cefalu collected six ground balls apiece. Cefalu won all seven of the Cardinals' faceoffs.


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