LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Playing on the road for the second time this week, the Virginia Military Institute lacrosse team was defeated by league newcomer Bellarmine University by a score of 17-7 Saturday afternoon at Owsley B. Frazier Stadium in Louisville, Kentucky.
The Keydets (0-9, 0-3) showed hustle on the offensive end by outshooting the Knights by a 37-30 margin but could not convert on extra-man opportunities, going 0-4 for the day. Bellarmine won the groundball battle by a 29-24 ratio and caused six turnovers to the Keydets’ four. The teams were evenly matched in faceoff opportunities as the Knights took a slim 15-13 edge out of 28 attempts.
VMI used a furious effort in the final quarter to outscore the Knights, 5-3, but a 14-2 deficit was too large to overcome as Bellarmine (2-4, 1-1) claimed the victory for its first league win of the year.
Bellarmine jumped out to a quick 6-0 lead in the first quarter before VMI’s Tom Nofi scored with four minutes before halftime to cut the Knight lead to 9-1, his fourth goal of the year. The Knights would go into the intermission with an 11-1 advantage off two quick strikes following Nofi’s goal.
The Keydets netted another goal near the end of the third period when Eric Groleau scored his third goal of the season to cut Bellarmine’s lead to 14-2 heading into the fourth. Mike DeBlasio picked up two goals in the final quarter to bring his total to seven for the year.
Keydets Wesley Sanders, Brad Biondello and Nofi then put three goals into the Knight net within a three-minute span to show some fight, but the disadvantage proved to be too great to overcome.
In the loss, the Keydets’ Evan Windisch logged nine saves on the afternoon.
VMI faces a quick turnaround as No. 7-ranked Virginia visits Drill Field #2 on Tuesday night. The first faceoff is slated for a 7 p.m. start in Lexington.