Penn State men’s lacrosse (12-4) has yet to win an NCAA Tournament game in four tries, as Towson (11-4) topped the Nittany Lions 12-8 Saturday in State College to advance to next weekend’s Elite Eight.
How It Happened
The Tigers took control of the pace early, peppering Penn State goalie Colby Kneese with shots through the first few minutes. Freshman attacker Mac O’Keefe broke open the scoring with a diving goal in front of the Towson cage to give the Nittany Lions a 1-0 lead with 7:17 left in the first quarter. Ryan Drenner tied things up for the Tigers, 1-1, three minutes later.
Senior attacker Nick Aponte tallied back-to-back goals to make it 3-1 Penn State with 11:26 left before the half. Towson’s Joe Seider answered by ripping a shot past Kneese to bring the Tigers within one goal of the lead, 3-2. Tyler Young knotted the score at 3-3, but Grant Ament dialed up a response five seconds later to help Penn State take the lead once more heading into halftime.
Towson’s Tyler Konen made it 4-4 with 11:50 to play in the third quarter, then sophomore Dylan Kinnear gave the Tigers their first lead of the game five minutes and change later. Alex Woodall won a faceoff and raced down the field for a quick goal to extend Towson’s lead to 6-4, but O’Keefe would soon cut the deficit to one and set a new program record in the process. His 50th goal of the year broke Bill Hess’ longstanding 1957 mark for goals in a single season.
Seider’s second tally of the afternoon gave Towson a two-goal cushion, 7-5, heading into the fourth quarter, but Ament ignited the home crowd with a pair of goals to complete the hat trick and tie the game at 7-7 with 13:01 to play. However, a three-goal rally gave Towson a commanding 10-7 lead — one it wouldn’t surrender. Mike Lynch scored back-to-back goals and Ryan Drenner netted his second of the game to pull away from the Nittany Lions. O’Keefe and Seider would each complete their hat tricks, then Seider scored another to cap the scoring at 12-8.
Player Of The Game
Joe Seider | Senior | Attacker
The Sparks, Md., native finished with a game-high four goals and two assists for the Tigers.
Unseeded Towson will face the winner of No. 2 seed Syracuse and Yale in Newark, Del., on Sunday, May 21.