The Navy men’s lacrosse team used a 4-1 run over the final 13 minutes of the game to earn a 12-9 victory against Bucknell on Friday evening at Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium in Lewisburg, Pa. The win secured the No. 4 seed and a home game for Navy Tuesday evening against fifth-seeded Loyola in the Patriot League Tournament Quarterfinals.
The Mids fell behind 3-0 early in the game but clawed their way back to close the opening period down by just one. The two teams went on to target just one goal each in the second frame with the Bison holding a 5-4 advantage at the break.
Sam Dracobly evened the game at 5 apiece with his goal just 59 seconds into the second half and sparked a 3-0 run to give the Mids their first lead of the game at 7-5.
Bucknell tied the game 8-8 once again when Jack Dudas fired in his lone goal of the game as he was falling to the ground at the 13:48 mark.
Xavier Arline scored back-to-back goals 30 seconds apart to take the lead for good. The Mids answered with two in a row by Mac Haley and Arline to capture the win.
Arline, who led Navy with six points on a career-high four goals and two assists, was one of seven players to score for the Mids, while Jon Jarosz and Henry Tolker contributed two goals apiece.
Defensively, the Mids forced 10 of Bucknell’s 15 turnovers, including Zach Snider, who recorded a career-high three takeaways in the win. Meanwhile, All-American Jackson Bonitz became only the fifth player in program history to reach the 50 caused turnover milestone.
Anthony Ghobriel dominated the faceoff game. He won 19 of the 24 draws he took and picked up a career-high 12 ground balls. It’s the second time this season that he’s won 19 faceoffs, a mark that is tied for the sixth most in school history.
Six players accounted for Bucknell’s nine goals, including Jack Feda who benefitted from a couple of fortuitous bounces that led to a hat trick. Meanwhile, Bison leading scorer Dutch Furlong was held to just a single assist by Bonitz.
With eight of the nine teams in action Friday evening, the Patriot League Tournament field and seeding has been set. Boston U. defeated Army 12-11 in West Point to earn the No. 1 seed, while Army is the No. 2. Both teams will have an opening-round bye. Meanwhile, Lehigh scored a 15-9 victory over Loyola to lay claim to the No. 3 seed and will play host to No. 6 seed Lafayette on Tuesday in the Patriot League Quarterfinals.
The Mids, meanwhile, earned the No. 4 seed and will play host to fourth-seeded Loyola on Tuesday evening at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.
Patriot League Men’s Lacrosse Championship Schedule Quarterfinal Round – Tuesday, May 2 | Hosted by higher seed 7:00 pm | No. 6 Lafayette at No. 3 Lehigh | ESPN+ 7:00 pm | No. 5 Loyola at No. 4 Navy | ESPN+
Semifinal Round – Friday, May 5 | Hosted by No. 1 Seed Lowest-remaining seed at No. 1 Boston U. | CBS Sports Network at 4 pm Highest-remaining seed vs. No. 2 Army | CBS Sports Network at 7 pm
Championship Game – Sunday, May 7 | Hosted by No. 1 Boston U. Lowest-remaining seed vs. Highest-remaining seed | Noon | CBS Sports Network at 12 noon
The Patriot League standings are as follows: Boston U. in first place with a record of 10-3 / 7-1, followed by Army in second place with a record of 10-3 / 7-1, and Lehigh in third place with a record of 9-4 / 6-2. Navy is in fourth place with a record of 8-7 / 5-3, followed by Loyola in fifth place with a record of 7-7 / 4-4, and Lafayette in sixth place with a record of 6-9 / 3-5.
The Mids’ next game against Loyola will be streamed on ESPN+ and carried live on 1430 AM / 99.9 FM WNAV with Pete Medhurst and Joe Miller on the call. With the win against Bucknell, the Mids are looking to continue their momentum and secure a spot in the Patriot League Championship game.
The Mids have a strong record in the Patriot League, having won the championship six times since joining the conference in 2004. They are also the defending champions, having won the title in 2019.
Navy has had a strong season, with standout performances from players like Arline, who was named Patriot League Offensive Player of the Week for the second time this season after his performance against Bucknell. The Mids also have a strong defense, led by Bonitz and Snider, who have been key in forcing turnovers and creating opportunities for the offense.
As the Mids prepare for their quarterfinal matchup against Loyola, they will be looking to continue their strong play and build on their momentum from the regular season. With a home game in the quarterfinals, they will have the support of their fans and the advantage of playing on their home field.