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Loyola’s furious rally not enough as Virginia wins opener in OT

Posted on 06 February 2014 by WNST Staff

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - Loyola University Maryland trailed seventh-ranked University of Virginia by eight goals at the start of the final quarter, but the Greyhounds reeled off nine straight to take a lead with 17.1 seconds to go on a Tyler Albrecht goal.

Virginia won the ensuing faceoff, and officials ruled that a Ryan Tucker shot cleared the goal line with one-tenth of a second left on the clock, and the game headed to overtime.

The Cavaliers (1-0) ended the game 1:44 into overtime on a James Pannell goal, giving Virginia a 14-13 victory in the season-opener for both teams.

In the game, Virginia had an 8-0 run during the second and third quarters, and the Greyhounds then used a 9-0 run to close the game and take a late lead.

Loyola (0-1) took a 2-0 lead on goals by Tyler Albrecht and Nikko Pontrello in the first 3:43, but the Cavaliers tallied three in a row to lead by one when Rob Emery scored on an extra-man opportunity with 7:52 to go in the first quarter.

Romar Dennis dodged from midfield and fired a goal that tied the score for Loyola at 3-3, but Pannell scored his second of the game, this time on man-up, and Virginia led, 4-3.

Brian Sherlock evened the score with a 59.1 seconds left in the first, executing a give-and-go for his first goal as a Greyhound.

Virginia broke the 4-4 deadlock with an extra-man goal by Pannell 1:06 into the second quarter, but neither the Greyhounds, nor Cavaliers scored again under less than five minutes were left before halftime.

The Cavaliers scored the final three goals of the half, the last coming on a Mark Cockerton shot with a defender draped on him, 1.7 seconds before the break. That score gave the Cavaliers an 8-4 advantage at halftime.

Cockerton scored another unassisted goal to keep the run going 2:06 into the third quarter, a frame that would end with the Greyhounds on the minus side of an 12-4 score.

Loyola did not take long in the fourth quarter to score, however, as Brian Schultz ripped a shot from the right side off a Justin Ward assist on an extra-man opportunity just 23 ticks into the stanza.

The Greyhounds got the ball back quickly, and Kyle Duffy scored 23 seconds later, and Matt Sawyer scored off a Pontrello assist at 13:11, pulling Loyola within five, 12-7.

Schultz followed with a nifty goal in transition off a Sherlock feed at 12:39, and Ward scored Loyola’s fifth in less than four minutes, rolling off a Cavaliers defender on the left side, scoring into the top right corner at 11:26. His goal cut Virginia’s lead to 12-9.

Pontrello then was on the receiving end of a Ward pass, and he scored at 8:42, and Sawyer had a highlight-reel goal with a slick move off a defender to make it 12-11 Virginia with 6:50 left in regulation.

Dennis then tallied his second goal as a collegian, ripping a high-to-high shot from 10 yards out, tying the score at 12-12 with 2:30 left in the fourth.

Loyola continued to hold possession, getting the ball back after Dennis’ goal, and Loyola wound the clock down to under 20 seconds when Albrecht went low-to-low, pushing the Greyhounds in front, 13-12, with 17.1 seconds left.

Virginia won the faceoff, however, and Cockerton worked the ball on the low right side. He got the ball to Pannell who found Tucker at the top of the zone. Tucker released a hard shot that went into the net. After a long discussion, the officials determined it went in with one-tenth of a second on the clock, tying the game and forcing overtime.

The Cavaliers won the faceoff to start the extra frame, and after three shots went off cage, Pannell tallied the winner 1:44 into the period.

Pannell finished with four goals and an assist, leading all scorers.

Five Greyhounds – Albrecht, Dennis, Pontrello, Sawyer and Schultz – all scored two goals a piece. For each, other than Pontrello, it was the first multi-goal game of their career. Sherlock and Ward both had one goal and two assists in the game, while Pontrello and Sawyer had assists.

Loyola’s comeback was spurred by solid play at the faceoff `X’ by Graham Savio. In his first collegiate game, Savio won 11-of-18 restarts.

Virginia did, however, pick up 35 ground balls to the Greyhounds’ 32. Pontrello led the way with a career-high five, while Savio and Duffy each had four.

The Greyhounds, who were playing the earliest game in the history of the program, take more than a week off before facing No. 9 Penn State University on Saturday, February 15, in State College, Pa.

 

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