KING’S POINT, N.Y. – In what was the definition of a back and forth game, the Susquehanna men’s lacrosse team held off Merchant Marine Academy to win 7-6 in a Landmark Conference matchup in King’s Point, N.Y.
Neither team scored back-to-back goals until midway through the third quarter and two unanswered Crusader goals in the fourth quarter put SU ahead 7-6, a lead that held up to give Susquehanna a 2-0 mark in Landmark Conference action.
Susquehanna freshman goalie Jonathan Berg (Chester, N.J./Mendham) came up big, making 13 saves, four of which came in the final nine minutes of the game.
Austen Lein (New Vernon, N.J./Chatham) and Nick Citron (Chatham, N.J./Chatham) added two goals apiece to pace SU (5-5, 2-0) with Lein also adding a team-best two assists.
As a team, the Crusaders doubled up USMMA (3-4, 1-2) in shots, 46-23. USMMA did, however, win an impressive 16-of-17 faceoffs.
It only took the Mariners 51 seconds to get on the board before Nick Reardon (West Deptford, N.J./West Deptford) netted his team’s first goal of the game to make it 1-1 with nine minutes to play in the opening quarter.
Those goals marked the only scoring of the first half and each team added two goals apiece in the second quarter for a 3-3 game at halftime.
USMMA briefly took a 4-3 lead early in the third quarter before Lein and Citron netted back-to-back goals for a 5-4 SU lead with 4:22 to play in the period. Unfortunately, USMMA’s Troy Smith scored with 2:19 to play to again tie the game, this time making it 5-5 heading into the final 15 minutes of play.
A mere 37 seconds into that final quarter, the Mariners’ Geoff Harty scored to break that 5-5 tie and make it 6-5 in favor of USMMA. However, Citron responded with a game-tying goal less than 50 seconds later and Lein netted the ultimate game-winning score with a goal at the 9:14 mark.
Berg came up with four critical saves over the remaining 9:14,
including a stop with just three seconds on the clock to preserve
The Crusaders are next in action on April 2 when they travel to Hood for a 3:30 p.m. contest.