PRINCETON, N.J. – The University of Pennsylvania men’s lacrosse team kept trying to come back on Saturday at Princeton, but the Tigers answered every time and pulled away down the stretch for a 15-12 win at Class of 1952 Stadium.
The 12th-ranked Quakers fell to 3-2 overall, while the No. 16 Tigers improved to 3-2. The game was the Ivy League opener for both squads.
Three times during the course of Saturday's game, Penn fell behind by three goals and got back to within one. Each time, Princeton was able to expand its lead, the final time by five goals before the Quakers closed out the day's scoring with the game's final two goals.
Princeton got on the board first, when Ryan Ambler finished a Mike McDonald feed less than two minutes into the contest. Penn got the goal back just 1:25 later, Chris Hupfeldt rocketing a pass from Derick Edwards, and then took a 2-1 lead when Isaac Bock scored off a Drew Belinsky feed in a man-up situation.
Princeton tied the game on a Jack Strabo shot, but Nick Doktor scored unassisted to put the Quakers up 3-2. Forest Sonnenfeldt tied the game for Princeton, and it was 3-3 after one quarter.
Princeton’s Tom Schreiber put the Tigers up with a pair of goals early in the second, the first of those assisted by McDonald. McDonald then scored, and less than four minutes into the period the Tigers were up 6-3.
Penn got two of those goals back, first when Losco scored unassisted and then mere seconds later when McCallion won the faceoff, brought it straight to goal, and scored as he was tripped. Suddenly it was a one-goal game, and the Quakers had the chance to get the ball back in a man-up situation.
Instead, Princeton won the ensuing faceoff, ran off the entire minute penalty, and added insult to injury with a pair of goals to make it 8-5 by halftime. Frocarro scored the Tigers’ seventh goal, while Schreiber netted his third late in the period.
Princeton opened the second-half scoring, as well, but Penn quickly got two goals on the board as Bock scored twice in a span of 25 seconds (the second off a nice feed from Belinsky). Then Bock found Hupfeldt alone out top, and the junior rifled home his second of the day to make the score 9-8 with 10:09 still left in the third.
Princeton turned to Schreiber, who showed why he was the No. 1 pick in the Major League Lacrosse draft a few months ago. His first shot was wide, but his second shot bounced in just under the crossbar to make it 10-8. A few minutes later, the Tigers were back up by three when Froccaro scored.
Penn again got within one, as McCallion scored his second goal of the day, unassisted, and then Bock finished a feed from Doktor for his fourth goal of the day to make the score 11-10. However, once again Princeton had the answer, as Kip Orban made it a two-goal game and then Ryan Ambler scored late in the third in a man-up situation. The Tigers went into the final quarter up, 13-10.
Penn got a man-up situation early in the fourth, but Losco’s shot was stopped by Matt O’Connor as the penalty expired. Just a few seconds after that, Orban scored again from distance and that made the score 14-10. Midway through the period, the Quakers again had a man-up chance, but late in the penalty Bock’s shot from right in front was stopped by O’Connor. Again the Tigers got the ball down the field, and again they scored, this time McDonald scoring unassisted with just 5:14 left.
Belinsky scored almost immediately off the ensuing faceoff, making it 15-11 with exactly five minutes left. Penn then won the ensuing faceoff, but was unable to get a shot off before the Tigers’ Nick Fernandez singlehandedly took it down the field through traffic. Brown closed out the scoring, off a feed from Alex Blonsky.
Penn outshot Princeton, 45-41, but O’Connor had a career-high 13 saves in the Tigers goal. At the other end, Brian Feeney made seven stops.
Penn is back at home next Saturday, hosting No. 8 Cornell at 1 p.m. The Big Red opened their Ivy season on Saturday with an 11-9 win over Yale, and are undefeated overall.