NEWARK, Del. – Slow starts in each half did not hinder the No. 16 Towson University men’s lacrosse team as the Tigers best long-time rival University of Delaware 10-6 on Saturday night at Delaware Stadium.
Senior midfielder Brian Bolewicki had a career outing for Towson (7-3, 3-0 CAA), potting two goals along with two assists. A balanced offensive effort and stout defense helped Towson clInch a berth in the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) Tournament for a sixth-straight season, all under the guidance of head coach Shawn Nadelen.
How it Happened
Riding the high of celebrations surrounding 39-year veteran Delaware head coach Bob Shillinglaw, who retires at the end the season, the Blue Hens struck early as Will Hirschmann scored just over two minutes into the game.
The Tigers got one back to deadlock the first quarter at 1-1 as Bolewick hammered a shot on a Matt Wylly assist.
Delaware (7-6, 0-3 CAA) regained a one-goal lead at 14:29 as Charlie Kitchen logged his 24th of the year on a Steve DeLargy assist.
Once again, Towson tied things up just over a minute later on a Mike Lynch step-down shot, with fellow senior Tyler Young on the backend.
The Hens took their third lead of the game at 8:15 behind a marker from Andrew Romagnoli unassisted.
Towson surged into the break with three-staight goals as Tyler Konen, Joe Seider and Lynch all scored in the final half of the second quarter. Bolewicki had the helper on Konen’s tally as Towson took a 5-3 lead at the half.
Delaware scored twice in the third quarter to tie the game for a fourth time, 5-5, as Kitchen scored on the extra-man at 11:17 on a Hirschmann assist, followed by a Joe Eisele goal at 6:32. The Tigers were held scoreless in the third frame.
The Tiger offense came alive in the final quarter, out-scoring the Blue Hens 5-1. All five goals were in succession. Jon Mazza drilled his 12th of the season followed by a second Bolewicki goal on a Ryan Drenner assist. Seider, Young and Drenner all scored within three minutes of each other for the final Tiger tallies of the night.
Delaware bookended the game with an Eisle shot at 2:04 of the fourth quarter.
Behind the Numbers
Towson out-shot the Blue Hens 35-24 on Saturday night, including 13 in the final frame. The Tigers put over half of their attempts on goal in the final 15 minutes.
Drenner’s two points added to his CAA-leading point streak, which now stands at 23 consecutive games. He has 73 points in that streak on 44 goals and 29 assists.
Matt Hoy made his second career start between the pipes for Towson, turning aside six Hen shots. Towson’s defense limited the Hens to six goals, tying the second-fewest goals Delaware has scored this season.
Hoy’s counterpart, Matt Deluca, who stands at 6-6, made a dozen saves in the loss.
After five turnovers in the first half, Towson controlled the ball better in the second half with just four total turnovers, including one in a crucial fourth quarter. Delaware had 11 miscues, going 11-of -18 in clears. Towson was a perfect 12-for-12 in the clearing game.
At the X, what was expected to be a close battle shifted the way of the Tigers as sophomore specialist Alex Woodall won 12 of his 19 draws, going five-for-seven in the fourth. Woodall had four of Towson’s 28 ground balls, limiting the Hens to just 21 grounders.
The Tigers won their 40th game all-time against Delaware, the second-most in program history over a single foe (Drexel – 42). Towson will finish 31-12 all-time against 39-year veteran head coach Bob Shillinglaw.
Towson has won three straight games over Delaware in the First State, dating back to a 7-6 overtime win on March 22, 2013. Tiger head coach Shawn Nadelen is 3-0 all-time at Delaware Stadium.
The Tigers won their 58th CAA game, the most all-time in league history. No. 2 Hofstra, which dropped a 13-12 game Saturday night against Drexel, is second with 56.
Towson rounds out its two-game CAA road swing with another trip up Interstate 95 next weekend at Fairfield.
The Tigers square off with the Stags at Rafferty Stadium for a 3 p.m. start in Connecticut.