Coming off a win to open its season last weekend, Penn State men’s lacrosse hosted Hobart College at Holuba Hall on Saturday. The Statesmen came into their season opener looking to improve on a 7-7 record they posted last season. The Nittany Lions made that outlook much tougher after a big fourth quarter comeback led Penn State past Hobart 17-12.
How It Happened
TJ Sanders opened up the scoring for the Nittany Lions within minutes, but Hobart answered back with two goals of its own. The game slowed down after the goal with neither offense producing much. The game heated up again late in the quarter with Penn State equalizing twice, only to have Hobart retake the lead on the next possession each time. At the end of the first quarter, the Statesmen led 4-3.
Penn State caught a break on the first possession of the second quarter after a crease violation kept Hobart from extending its lead. The Nittany Lions started to find their form in the second quarter. A goal directly off the face-off from Billy Lombardi kicked off a run of three unanswered goals to give Penn State the lead. The Nittany Lions went into halftime up 7-5.
The Statesmen closed the gap to begin the second half with back to back goals. After a penalty, Hobart staved off Penn State’s man advantage only to see the Nittany Lions score seconds after the teams had even numbers. The Statemen were quick to answer back, winning the face-off and scoring early in the possession. Hobart’s Frank Brown completed his hat trick with a narrow-angled goal to give the Statesmen the lead before Teddy Sisco doubled it to end the quarter. Hobart went into the fourth quarter with a 10-8 lead.
Hobart’s scored straight off the face-off to begin the quarter, but Penn State wouldn’t let the Statesmen get away. Penn State scored back to back goals in what was a wild opening minute to the final quarter. Within 50 seconds, a three goal Hobart lead was diminished by the Nittany Lions with Ryan Keenan netting the equalizer. TJ Sanders scored soon after to give Penn State the lead and himself a hat trick. Dominating face-offs and scoring goals at will, Penn State started to roll. Hobart had no answer for the stout defense from the Nittany Lions. Their big fourth quarter, which saw them score nine goals, led them to a 17-12 win.
Player Of The Game
Ryan Keenan | Sophomore | Attacker
Ryan Keenan played a huge role in the Nittany Lions’ comeback win. Scoring a hat trick, Keenan’s goals came at an important juncture of a wild fourth quarter that propelled Penn State past Hobart.
Penn State will travel to Ithaca, New York to take on the No. 15 Cornell Big Red. Action begins next Saturday at 3 p.m.
Steve Connelly is a senior majoring in PR and an editor for Onward State. He is a proud native of the state of New Jersey, and yes, he is literal trash. He is a soccer fan, nap enthusiast, and chicken tender connoisseur. He tries to be a photographer sometimes despite one of his photos inspiring the name of his future sports bar, the Blurry Zamboni. You can follow him on Twitter @slc2o (feel free to slide), email him at [email protected], or come say hi to him in his office, the Irving's basement.