March 12, 2017
By Robby Hamman
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - In the game's final seconds, Denver's Connor Cannizzaro scored a diving goal right before the final whistle to deliver the Pioneers an 11-10 victory over Notre Dame on Sunday afternoon. The matchup was the latest thriller in a series that has featured many tight games over the years, as the contest had seven ties and two lead changes.
How It Happened
The Pioneers jumped out to an early lead, scoring in the opening 90 seconds to gain a 1-0 advantage. The Irish wasted little time in answering, as freshman Bryan Costabile scored less than two minutes later off a pass from Ryder Garnsey to tie it up at 1-1.
Denver tacked on two more goals to go on top 3-1 before the Irish once again fought back. Brendan Collins found the back of the net with 6:27 remaining followed by a goal from Garnsey minutes later to knot the score at 3-3. Unfortunately for the Irish the Pioneers added two more goals in the final three minutes of the opening quarter to take a 5-3 advantage through the first 15 minutes of action.
The Irish defense settled in during the second quarter, allowing just one goal to give the team an opportunity to make another comeback. Notre Dame found the back of the net three times in the quarter to make it an even 6-6 game going into the halftime intermission. The Irish goals were scored by Mikey Wynne, Brian Willetts and Drew Schantz.
Both the Irish and Pioneers were opportunistic in the third quarter, as each side took advantage of man-up opportunities. Notre Dame took its first lead of the game at 7-6 when Wynne scored his second goal of the game off a feed from Garnsey with just over six minutes left in the third. Denver responded with a man-up goal of its own with less than three minutes left in the third to send the game into the fourth quarter tied at 7-7.
The fourth quarter began with an offensive explosion, as each team scored two goals in the opening 2:17. Garnsey struck first for the Irish and after a Denver goal that followed 17 seconds later Schantz put the Irish back on top at 9-8 with his second of the game. Denver's Ethan Walker answered less than 30 seconds later to once again level the score at 9-9.
After going three minutes without a goal, Notre Dame went back on top at 10-9, as senior midfielder Sergio Perkovic fired a shot into the back of the net from distance for his first goal of the game. After holding the Pioneer attack scoreless for nearly 10 minutes, Denver scored and tied the game at 10-10 off of a two-man-up situation which set up Cannizzaro's game-winning goal.
Notre Dame Player Of The Game
Garnsey executed the playmaker role at the highest level on Sunday, registering a team-high six points off two goals and a career-high four assists. The sophomore's previous best for assists was two in a game. Garnsey has now registered four or more points in a game three times this season.
Notre Dame Notes
- Seven of the last eight games against Denver have been decided by a goal or less.
- With two goals, Garnsey has a team-high 11 goals in 2017.
- Wynne scored twice and now has 10 goals on the year, the second most on the team
- Costabile scored his fifth goal of the season and has found the back of the net in all four games in his debut campaign.
- Schantz had his first mult-goal game of his career with two against the Pioneers.
The Irish remain on the road, as the squad travels east as part of their spring break trip. After a week in Baltimore and Washington D.C., Notre Dame will take on Virginia in its ACC opener on Saturday, March 18 at 6 p.m. in Charlottesville, Virginia. The game will be broadcast on ESPNU.
The University of Notre Dame men's lacrosse team pursues excellence on and off the field through the three pillars in which the program is built: Character, Culture & Community. These three foundational values guide the promise of the program, which is to provide its student-athletes with the most compelling and enriching experience in all of college athletics. Through academics, competition, service and travel, the program aims to immerse its players in situations that enhance their student-athlete experience to help them become the people, students and teammates they aspire to be.
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Robby Hamman joined Fighting Irish Media as athletics communications assistant director in September 2016, coordinating efforts for the volleyball and men's lacrosse program. Hamman is a 2010 graduate of Bethel College, where he earned bachelor's degrees in sport management and business administration, and earned his master's degree in business administration from Defiance College in 2013.