SCHENECTADY, N.Y. – In a hard-fought battle, the St. Mary’s College of Maryland men’s lacrosse team narrowly missed advancing to the third round of the NCAA Division III Men’s Lacrosse Championship Tournament. Despite a stellar performance by senior goalie Ben Robertson, the Seahawks fell to No. 5 Middlebury College with a final score of 10-9. The game took place on Saturday afternoon, May 13, marking St. Mary’s College’s first-ever appearance in the tournament’s second round.
Middlebury College seized the opportunity at the start, opening the game with a four-goal run after a Seahawk turnover. Senior captain Cal Wilcox ignited St. Mary’s offense, scoring their first goal off an assist from sophomore attackman Keegan Preis. This sparked a three-goal run, narrowing the gap to 4-3 with 5:29 remaining in the first quarter.
The Panthers responded with a goal from Cooper DeMallie, reclaiming a two-goal lead. However, St. Mary’s fought back, finding the net twice in the final minutes of the first quarter, resulting in a 5-5 tie heading into the second period.
Middlebury broke the draw in the second quarter, but St. Mary’s midfielder Johnny McGrain quickly leveled the score at six. The Panthers then scored two goals just before halftime, securing a 7-5 lead.
The third quarter saw a defensive battle, with the only score coming from Middlebury’s William Ryan at 2:48, extending their lead to 9-6. St. Mary’s made a late surge in the fourth quarter, outscoring the Panthers 3-1 and closing the gap to 10-9 with 5:48 remaining. Despite several quality opportunities in the final minutes, the Seahawks couldn’t find the equalizer and force overtime.
Middlebury dominated in shots, outshooting St. Mary’s 45-34, and also held the advantage in ground balls, 36-28. Both teams committed 13 turnovers, while Middlebury excelled in face-offs, winning 17-of-23, thanks to William Munroe’s impressive performance.
Cal Wilcox, Johnny McGrain, and PJ Fenchak led the Seahawk offense with two goals each, while Walker Krizman contributed a goal and an assist. On the defensive end, junior defenseman Ethan Little stood out with three caused turnovers and three ground balls. Krizman and sophomore defensive midfielder Jeremy Heath also made significant contributions, each picking up three loose balls.
For Middlebury, William Ryan and Russell Thorndike led the scoring with three goals apiece, and Munroe excelled in ground balls, retrieving seven. Hayden Kern played a crucial role in securing Middlebury’s victory, making 14 saves.
With this win, Middlebury advances to the third round of the NCAA Division III Men’s Lacrosse Championship Tournament, where they will face the winner of the Union College-Western New England College matchup.
Despite the loss, the St. Mary’s College Seahawks have a lot to be proud of this season. They claimed the United East Conference regular-season title with a perfect 5-0 record, won their second consecutive United East championship crown, and secured the program’s first-ever NCAA Tournament win.
The Seahawks conclude their season with their heads held high, having achieved notable successes and leaving a lasting impact on St. Mary’s College lacrosse history.