ALFRED, NY – Down 13-11 early in the fourth quarter, the Barons went on a 4-1 run to win the 2018 Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference Men's Lacrosse Showcase 15-14, Sunday afternoon.
The Barons found themselves in an extra-man opportunity with 7:45 to play and wasted no time to get within one goal. Senior Jonas McCaig found the back of the next 13 seconds into the penalty to trim the deficit to 13-12 with 7:32 to play. Just 30 seconds later, junior Dan McCartney took a pass from sophomore T.M. Thomas to tie the game at 13 with 7:02 to play. Franciscan won the ensuing faceoff and took their time setting up the offense. Thomas got a shot off but it went just wide. Franciscan maintained possession but could not get another shot off and after a turnover by each team, Alfred State took over in its offensive zone. The Pioneers called a timeout and got their offense set up. Ian Grana took a shot on cage for the Pioneers but freshman goalie Grant McKeown made a traffic save to keep the game tied and McCartney picked up the groundball to kick off the successful clear for Franciscan.
Senior Mike Rosaschi gave the Barons the lead, 14-13, with 4:28 to go thanks to an assist from freshman Joe Bartholomaus. The Pioneers won the next faceoff and immediately went to cage and re-tied the game with a goal 13 seconds into their possession.
After sophomore Jonathan Lee won the faceoff with 4:15 to play, McCartney picked up the groundball and got the offense set. Franciscan drew another slashing penalty to get back on the EMO with 3:34 to play. The Barons needed just 20 seconds of their extra man opportunity this time as McCartney took a pass from Bartholomaus and put the Barons up for good, 15-14, with 3:14 to play.
Alfred State got a clean shot off with 1:00 to play but McKeown made a great stop for the Barons. After a Franciscan turnover with 25 seconds left, the Pioneers got two shots off but both were off target and Franciscan held on for the exciting 15-14 win.
The game started just as exciting as it ended as Alfred State jumped out to a 1-0 lead just 56 seconds into the game. It took almost nine minutes, but the Barons rattled off four-straight goals in three minutes of action to take the 4-1 lead. Lee kicked off the run with his first of the game with 5:22 to play. Thomas gave Franciscan the lead 38 seconds later with his first goal of the game. The Barons got their third extra-man opportunity with 3:37 to play in the first and scored quickly, just 10 seconds into the EMO, to be exact as Rosaschi found the back of the net thanks to a pass from McCaig for the 3-1 lead. McCaig caped the first quarter scoring with 2:41 to play with his first goal of the game as the Barons were in yet another extra-man opportunity. McKeown made a save with 20 seconds to play in the quarter to keep the lead.
Alfred State cut into the Baron lead with two quick goals to kick off the second quarter but Thomas and Bartholomaus scored back-to-back goals just 21 seconds apart to push the Baron lead back to 6-3. Alfred State went on a 3-0 run to tie the game with 3:57 to play. Rosaschi once again took advantage of a man-up opportunity and scored 13 seconds into the minute penalty to give Franciscan a 7-6 lead going into halftime.
McCartney pushed the Baron lead to 8-6 1:51 into the third but the Alfred State tied the game with back-to-back goals within 23 seconds of each other. McCaig gave Franciscan a 10-8 lead midway through the third quarter with back-to-back goals with 6:47 to play. Joe Johnson sandwiched a pair of goals around another McCaig tally before tying the game for Alfred State with his fourth goal of the quarter with 2:12 to play in the third. AJ Soto gave Alfred State the 12-11 lead at the end of the third to set up the dramatic final quarter for the Barons.
McCaig led the Barons with five goals and a pair of assists in his final game as a Baron and picked up nine ground balls. Thomas had a pair of goals and three assists. Rosaschi finished up his career with the Barons with three goals and three assists. McCartney scored three times while scooping up 12 groundballs.
Freshman Jerome Harkins was tenacious on defense for the Barons as he caused five turnovers and picked up 14 groundballs.
The win marks the final game of the 2018 campaign for the Barons and Franciscan wraps up the year 6-8 overall. The 15-14 win is the first win over Alfred State in program history.
"It was a stated goal of ours to win the showcase from day one," remarked head coach Pete Rosaschi following the game. "And I read that goal and a prayer every single day beforehand. We were confident going into the game and fortunate to come away with a win against a very talented Alfred State team.
"We had a very good week of practice and somehow found a way to win."
Individually, McCaig ends his career with the Barons' leader in goals (142), assists (75), and points (217). Rosaschi finishes his career with 135 points, including 88 goals and 47 assists in the last four years. Senior Leo Munday ends his career with 12 caused turnovers and 21 groundballs for the Barons.