FLUSHING, N.Y. — Holy Cross midfielder Terry McKenna scored four goals while Michael Ortlieb made 12 stops between the pipes to lead the Crusaders (4-3, 1-1 PL) to a 7-5 victory over the Navy men’s lacrosse team (3-5, 1-2 PL) Sunday afternoon at Citi Field, the home of the New York Mets. Sunday’s contest marked just the second Div. I men’s lacrosse game played at a Major League Baseball venue, as Citi Field played host to the Metropolitan Lacrosse Classic presented by Konica Minolta.
“I’m certainly disappointed by the result today,” said second-year Navy head coach Rick Sowell. “Give credit to Holy Cross. They played good enough to beat us, so I have to tip my cap to them.
“It was a great opportunity to play in this even. We came up here to get a win, first and foremost, so the result definitely put a damper on an otherwise great experience.”
McKenna carried the Crusaders on his shoulders, scoring the first three goals for Holy Cross, including the game’s first marker at 4:29 on an unassisted strike from eight yards out on the left wing.
The Mids knotted the game with a minute remaining in the opening period when rookie attackman T.J. Hanzsche (Berwyn, Pa.) beat Holy Cross defenseman Daniel Schmader and curled around for a left shot up the middle.
Navy took its lone lead of the game when junior Pat Durkin (Germantown, Md.) set up at the top of the box and found second-year midfielder Gabe Voumard (Cape May, N.J.) cutting to the crease for his 12th goal of the season 26 seconds into the second quarter.
The Crusaders answered with back-to-back goals scored by McKenna just 1:27 apart to give them a 3-2 advantage with just under 12 minutes to go in the half.
Navy tied things up when Durkin scored the first of his game-high two goals. Junior Sam Jones (Annapolis, Md.) fed Durkin who drew the double team and spun his way for a low side-winder at 6:47 in the second.
Holy Cross took the lead for good when James Kennedy and Myles Gillespie collaborated for an extra-man goal from just three yards out with 5:00 to go in the first half.
The Crusaders extended their lead to two goals less than four minutes into the third quarter when reserve Chris Smith launched a 13-yard shot from the left side.
Navy answered a minute latr when Durkin beat defenseman Matt Ward and sent his diving left-handed shot past Ortlieb to get the Mids to within one with 10:22 to go in the third.
Holy Cross pushed their lead to two at 6-4 when McKenna fed leading scorer Clay Haarmann for its second extra-man goal of the game with 1:47 to go in the quarter.
The Mids again trimmed the lead to one, 6-5, with 11:51 remaining when Jones set up behind the goal and curled around the left side, beating Reed Kennedy for his game-high 13th goal.
McKenna sealed the win for the Crusaders with his fourth goal of the game, taking a pass from Haarmann and lodging his shot into the back of the net from 15 yards out with 5:16 to go.
Durkin paced the Mids with three points on two goals and assist, while Hanzsche, Jones and Voumard all pitched in goals.
Senior Evan McGoogan (Cranberry Township, Pa.) played a solid game, winning 10 of the 16 draws he took and led the Mids with six ground balls.
Junior long pole Pat Kiernan (Ridgewood, N.J.), meanwhile, picked up five ground balls and caused three turnovers to lead the defense, while senior keeper Nolan Hickey (Garden City, N.Y.) surrendered all seven goals and made 10 saves.
“I thought today was more about what we did and didn’t do vs. what they did,” added Sowell. “We didn’t shoot well, but that’s been our Achilles heel all year. There are a number of things that have plagued us. We’re in a rut right now that we can’t seem to get ourselves out of, but we have to figure it out in a hurry.”
The Midshipmen return to action next Saturday when they face Colgate in a Patriot League matchup at the Konica Minolta Faceoff Classic. Game time is slated for 2:00 pm at M&T Bank Stadium. The game can be seen on ESPNU.