No. 1 Penn State Lacrosse Stifled By No. 3 Yale, Falls 12-10

No. 1 Penn State lacrosse (3-1) fell in a blockbuster, non-conference matchup against No. 3 Yale (2-0) 12-10. Yale jumped out to an early lead, and the Nittany Lions could never fully respond in a game of runs.

No player scored more than twice for the Nittany Lions in the loss. Grant Ament broke the Big Ten record for points with his third quarter goal, his only of the match.

How It Happened

Yale got out to an early lead after Jackson Morrill scored an unassisted attempt less than 30 seconds in. The Nittany Lions were stifled in their first two attempts, going the distance on both 80-second possessions.

Penn State found the breakthrough on a sloppy defensive error from the Bulldogs. Mac O’Keefe got right back to his scoring ways on a one-on-one with goalkeeper Brody Wilson for the early equalizer.

Colby Kneese stopped nearly everything in the early going, however he was finally bested a second time with under two minutes left in the opening 15 minutes, as Yale took a 2-1 lead.

While the game remained a defensive affair through the second quarter, Yale jumped out to a 4-1 lead with nine minutes left in the half off goals from Chris Fake and Matt Brandau. The face-offs were beginning to look like Penn State’s demise; the Nittany Lions lost the first eight contests at the center circle.

Two more goals in the quarter continued the Bulldogs’ onslaught. O’Keefe finally stopped the bleeding with 3:18 left in the half; the goal directly correlated with Arceri’s first face-off won. Penn State continued the momentum through a Jack Kelly close range goal, and the Nittany Lions went to the locker room trailing 6-3.

Nick Cardile was punished for slashing with nine minutes left in the third, and Yale immediately took advantage for a 7-3 lead. The Nittany Lions returned the favor on their own man-up, to keep the game close. TJ Malone cut the lead to two with 4:36 left in the third quarter.

While Grant Ament cut the lead to one, Logan Soelberg cancelled it out, restoring the Bulldogs’ cushion at 8-6 with 1:21 left in the quarter.

Jack Traynor made things exciting for the Nittany Lions with 12:37 to play, cutting the lead to 8-7. Penn State then thought they had tied the contest for the first time since the first quarter, however too many players were on the field for the Lions. In heartbreaking fashion, Yale extended their lead shortly after, going up 10-7 with under seven minutes to play.

A Kevin Hill man-up goal cut the score to 10-8, however Yale once again kept Penn State at bay, scoring twice with under four minutes to play to put the nail in the coffin for the home side. A late push wasn’t enough, and the game ended with Yale winning 12-10.


  • Yale pounded Penn State at the face-off X, winning 16 of the 26 opportunities. The lack of possessions gave the Nittany Lions a severe disadvantage, and they weren’t clinical enough to make up for it.
  • Yale’s four-goal run in the second quarter proved fatal for Penn State. While it was a game of runs, a 6-1 scoreline was too much to overcome. The turning point of the game occurred with 10 minutes remaining, when what would have been a Penn State equalizer was chalked off due to the amount of players on the field for the Nittany Lions. Their push subsided, and Yale were able to ride a final run of their own to complete the victory.
  • Despite THON going on up the street at the BJC, Panzer Stadium was packed for the heavyweight affair. The home fans didn’t have much to cheer for in the first half, however Yale needed to sweat out Penn State’s third-quarter run. In the end, the crowd’s support wasn’t enough for the offensively anemic Nittany Lions.

What’s Next

Penn State will go back on the road next weekend, when they travel to Philadelphia to face No. 8 Penn. The game will be played on Saturday, February 29 on BTN+.

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About the Author

Otis Lyons

Otis is a sophomore majoring in print journalism and is one of Onward State's associate editors. He lives just north of San Francisco, and is a diehard San Jose Earthquakes fan. Feel free to send over your soccer hot takes to his twitter @otisnlyons1 and instagram @otislyons

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