St. Mary’s College of Maryland men’s lacrosse team, the No. 1 seed, won the United East Conference Men’s Lacrosse Championship on Saturday afternoon (May 6). They defeated the second-seeded Mustangs of SUNY Morrisville 17-10, securing the conference’s automatic qualifying bid to the 2023 NCAA Division III Men’s Lacrosse Championship Tournament. With a repeat win, the Seahawks won their fourth conference championship overall.
Senior Mitch Boudreau was named Tournament MVP, having won 34-of-38 face-offs, scooped up 21 ground balls, and scored a goal between the semifinal and championship games. The 13th face-off win of the game was the 400th of his career, marking a significant milestone.
The Seahawks fought a hard battle, beginning with a tight first quarter where Morrisville led 4-2 with 1:50 remaining. Boudreau closed the gap to 4-3, igniting a 7-0 run by St. Mary’s that carried them from the first period into the third for a five-goal cushion. Morrisville fought back with a 5-1 run, pulling within 10-9, but St. Mary’s closed out the game on a 7-1 spurt to pull away.
The Seahawks fired off 54 shots to Morrisville’s 25 while St. Mary’s gained a 38-20 advantage in ground balls. Both teams committed a total of 51 turnovers, making for a sloppy game. Both man-down defensive units worked hard all day to kill off 21 penalties, with St. Mary’s killing four of seven Morrisville extra-man opportunities, while the Mustangs allowed only four EMO goals in 11 Seahawk attempts.
Senior attackman Walker Krizman found the back of the net a career-tying four times to finish as the game’s top goal-scorer. Junior midfielder Johnny McGrain tallied a career-matching five points on two goals and a career-best three assists. Sophomore attackman Keegan Preis had a hand in four goals this afternoon, dishing out a game-best four assists. Junior LSM Bryce Howard helped to interrupt Morrisville’s transition game with season-bests of four grounders and two caused turnovers. Senior goalie Ben Robertson turned away seven Mustang shots for his 14th win between the pipes.
Dante Patriarco and Daniel Squires each put up three goals to lead the Mustangs, while Zach Nestor contributed two goals and two assists. Dylan LaPlace made 14 stops to keep Morrisville in the game.
The Seahawks will await their next opponent, which will be announced on May 7th at 9:00 p.m. when the 2023 NCAA Division III Men’s Lacrosse Selection Show airs on NCAA.com. St. Mary’s College of Maryland will play in the first round of the tournament on May 10th against a team to be determined.
St. Mary’s College of Maryland has had a successful season, with a record of 14-5 overall and 8-0 in the conference. They had previously won the United East Conference Championships in 2016, 2017, and 2022. With the conference championship secured, the Seahawks are eager to continue their success in the NCAA Division III Men’s Lacrosse Championship Tournament.