STONY BROOK, N.Y. – Senior defender Doug Eich chose a great time to score his first goal of the season. His score 35 seconds into overtime gave UAlbany a golden goal victory over Stony Brook 17-16 to send the Great Danes to the America East title game.
In overtime, a faceoff violation on UAlbany (10-5) gave the ball to Stony Brook (6-10) with golden goal on the line. A ground ball shot by Rogers was saved by Blaze Riorden, and UAlbany cleared. With a 4-on-4 situation, Lyle Thompson drew a second defender, freeing Eich on the far side. Eich threw a hard shot that went into the cage for the win.
“We had numbers, so I stayed up field,” said Eich. “Lyle [Thompson] found me and I just shot the ball and scored.
“”I went to draw attention, and [Eich’s] defender came to me, and Doug was wide open, so I passed it to him,” added Thompson.
Thompson had a key goal earlier in the game, scoring with five seconds left in the fourth quarter to tie the game and force overtime. That stopped a 5-0 run by Stony Brook which gave the tournament host a lead and nearly the victory.
“”I was trying to draw attention for a feed, but they were not sliding. I got free and felt like I had three seconds to score,” said Thompson.
“What a lacrosse game for the fans and the sport,” said UAlbany head coach Scott Marr. “The offenses were very aggressive and they came through. We really had to dig deep in the second quarter, and hats off to [Stony Brook head coach] Jim [Nagle] for a heck of a game.”
Thompson finished with five goals and three assists for eight points, totaling 106 on the year. He becomes the first person in NCAA Division I history to earn over 100 points in two different seasons, earning 114 last year.
Miles Thompson led the team in scoring with seven goals and two assists for nine points, standing with 99 on the year. Riorden earned the win with nine saves, including the crucial one in overtime.
For Stony Brook, Matt Schultz finished with three goals and two assists, while Mike Andreassi had a hat trick. Hayden Johnstone had 13 saves in goal despite the defeat.
UAlbany will now take on UMBC in the America East title game on Saturday at LaValle Stadium at 10 a.m. for a berth into the NCAA Tournament.
Stony Brook got the early advantage on UAlbany, with Frank Lucatuorto, Challen Rogers and Mike Rooney scoring in succession to build a 3-0 lead in the opening five minutes, later adding another goal from Jake Sichenzia score with five minutes left. Miles Thompson stopped the run with a behind-the-back score. SB got the goal back later, and as the quarter nearly expires, Lyle Thompson wrapped around the cage and scored, putting the score at 5-2 after one.
The Thompson brothers were scoring at will in the beginning of the second. Lyle Thompson scored on a dive near the crease, then just 13 seconds later, Artie Marrapese won the faceoff and missed his shot, but Miles Thompson got the next chance and scored. A little more than a minute later, Lyle Thompson passed to Miles Thompson for the score to tie the game. Minutes later, Miles Thompson earned another behind-the-back goal to put UAlbany in front. SB countered to stop the 5-0 run with Rogers getting through a double team to score, then UAlbany countered back as Matthew Bertrams fired a shot for a score to put UAlbany back in the lead. Lyle Thompson added another as he got around a defender, then following a Dylan Curry score off the faceoff, Miles Thompson received a pass after a scrum on the faceoff, faking out the keeper for the score with 1:22 left in the half for the 9-7 lead and eventual halftime score.
After each side had a quick possession, Schultz got the first goal for Stony Brook of the second half on a low shot inside the post. UAlbany held on the next possession, cleared, and Lyle Thompson threw a ground ball to Miles Thompson for the goal. Both sides went back-and-forth quickly, with a Schultz goal eight seconds later being countered by Lyle Thompson running straight into a triple team and throwing the ball into the net for the goal. Stony Brook tied it up with scores from Andreassi and Hughes to make it 11-11 with 7:42 left in the quarter. UAlbany struck back with two goals, a Matt Garziano catch and shoot and a Miles Thompson score off a failed SB clear, in the next 2:10. In the final two minutes, Ryan Feuerstein ripped two shots for goals to build the UAlbany advantage to 15-11 going into the fourth.
Neither side was able to connect in the opening 4:40 of the quarter, until Andreassi scored on a bounce shot for Stony Brook, followed soon-after by a Schultz goal on a catch and shoot from Hughes and later on an Eastwood goal and a Kyle Rowe goal off the faceoff to tie the game at 15. Later, UAlbany shot three times on a man-up possession and was not able to score, then SB got its own man-up and saw Andreassi score with 3:22 left in the 4th to give the Seawolves a 16-15 lead. UAlbany lost the faceoff and played defense, forcing a turnover with about a minute left. With the clock running down, Lyle Thompson got around his defender and scored with five seconds remaining to tie the score, sending the game to overtime.
Eich’s goal 35 seconds into overtime was the fourth of his career after getting three last season.