LEXINGTON, Ky. – Despite six goals from junior Bret Schell (Dayton, Ohio) and outscoring Transylvania over the final three periods, the Hanover men's lacrosse team was doomed by a slow start in a 13-11 loss in the Ohio River Lacrosse Conference Semifinals Wednesday evening.
Schell scored a career-high six goals in what would be Hanover's season finale, which included three consecutive Panther scores spanning the end of the first and start of the second quarter. The junior paced the Blue and Red with eight shot attempts, including six on goal.
After scoring the game's first goal less than one minute in, the Panthers (7-10) found themselves on the wrong side of a 7-2 run over the final 13 minutes of the first quarter. Sophomore Eric Clay (Wilmington, Del.) scored his second goal of the season off a pass from classmate Noah King (Lexington, Ky.) to give HC the early advantage. Clay would also lead the Panthers with six groundballs. Schell and freshman Jackson Wheeler (Indianapolis, Ind.) also found the back of the net in the first as Hanover trailed 7-3 after 15 minutes of play.
Hanover scored three of the first four goals of the second quarter, two from Schell and one from junior Joseph DeLeo (Waterford, Mich.), pulling within two goals with 2:31 remaining in the frame. Transylvania (11-6) though, received a score in the final 10 seconds of the half to take a 9-6 advantage into the break.
The Blue and Red opened the second half with goals from freshman Ian Kimmins (Dayton, Ohio) and Schell to pull within one, 9-8, with 12:27 left to play in the third period. The Pioneers responded with four of the quarter's final five goals though, including one with 0.6 seconds showing on the clock to extend their edge back to four at 13-9.
Despite holding Transy scoreless over the final 15 minutes of action, Hanover was only able to find the back of the net twice late. Goals from Schell and King would not be enough as HC's comeback effort fell just short, 13-11.
To go along with the Panthers' goal output, four players tallied at least one assist, including junior Al Alessia (Crown Point, Ind.) who posted two helpers. Hanover finished with 34 total shots Wednesday, including 19 on goal. Joining Schell with at least five attempts were DeLeo and King.
Defensively, sophomore Noah Dubrava (Centerville, Ohio) made double-digit saves for the 12th time in 17 games. Dubrava rejected 11 Transy shots on goal Wednesday while also retrieving three groundballs.
Junior Evan Bartlett (Oxford, Ohio) paced the Panthers with four caused turnovers, as HC forced 11 of the Pioneers' 19 giveaways. Bartlett also logged four groundballs. Classmate Sam Green (Beaumaris, Australia) was 9-for-18 in face-offs, while also recording five groundballs.
Hanover finishes the 2018 campaign with a four-win improvement from the 2017 season and the seven overall wins tie a program-high since joining the ORLC in 2015. The Panthers also posted a 7-3 record in league play this spring, which is their best mark in their four seasons in the ORLC.
Contact: Tyler Jester