The new artificial turf field, which sits atop the athletic fields on campus, has done wonders for the Quinnipiac men’s lacrosse team this spring. Every win the Bobcats have captured this year has been on their home field.
On Saturday, however, the Bobcats dropped a 12-7 decision at home to non-conference foe Providence College. The loss snapped the Bobcats’ two-game home winning streak, dropping them to 6-5 overall and 6-2 at the Hamden venue.
“We realize that we’re representing the school and defending a home field here. We talked a lot about having a lot of pride, representing the school, and these guys have really bought into it,” Quinnipiac coach Erik Fekete said.
The Bobcats were out-dueled Saturday by a Providence team that attacked QU’s shortsticks, set good picks, and played solid defense behind a goalie that made a handful of eye-popping saves.
The Bobcats scored four of the five goals of the third quarter, slicing a five-goal halftime deficit to two, after Tucker Prudden’s shot made the score 9-7 with 1:50 remaining in the stanza.
They gained momentum with just under five minutes to go in the second, as Eric Trama curled in from the left side behind the net and slipped one past Peter Littell (12 stops, 7 GA). A 4-2 run followed, as the Bobcats came roaring back from a 7-2 shortfall.
Quinnipiac, which has made a theme out of using powerful surges to crawl out of holes this year, appeared to have the stage set for a thrilling fourth quarter.
But the Friars’ Devin McBride scored 16 seconds into the frame and Providence tacked on two more unanswered goals to put the ‘Cats away.
Senior Josh Murray, who led the Bobcats with four points on two goals and two assists, reached the 100-point milestone. Beyond Murray for the Bobcats, Eric Trama recorded his fourth hat trick of the season and Eddie Morley handed out a pair of assists. Providence’s Jonathan Hollister led all scorers with five points on two goals and three assists. McBride and Bobby Labadini paced PC with two goals apiece.
Providence scored the game’s first four goals. Labidini finished a Brendan Roy dish on a man-up situation to make it 3-0. Brad Sieniawski fired a shot over the head of goalie James Nastro (three saves, 12 GA) to cap off the early start.
QU answered back, as scoring leader Sean McBride whipped a shot past Littell from the right side, with five minutes to go in the first. Moments after Murray planted a Friar into the turf with a crushing hit, senior Jimmy Montana scooped up a groundball and set up Trama on the run. Trama converted the goal, as the Bobcats cut it to 4-2.
That’s when the Friars reeled of a 3-0 spurt, constructing a 7-2 lead they wouldn’t relinquish.
The Bobcats complete their home schedule on April 29, in a Spring Weekend showdown against Butler. A victory would secure their first winning season since 2001.
Spring Weekend didn’t provide much charm for the Bobcats last year, as they fell to Vermont in a mucky overtime thriller that saw midfielder Jon D’Ascoli break his leg.
The ‘Cats will look to re-script the books with a win over Butler, before they conclude the season with a match up against national powerhouse Notre Dame at South Bend, Ind.