Bison men’s lacrosse upsets No. 6 Loyola in Baltimore

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Bison men’s lacrosse upsets No. 6 Loyola in Baltimore

Photo Courtesy of Bucknell Athletic Department

Photo Courtesy of Bucknell Athletic Department

Photo Courtesy of Bucknell Athletic Department

Ross Lazarus, Senior Writer

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The Bison shocked No. 6 Loyola in Baltimore on March 24 by a score of 12-11 for their first upset win over a top-10 opponent since 2013. Last year, the Bison beat then-ranked No. 17 Loyola at home in double overtime. The stars aligned again this year for the Bison, pulling off another memorable upset. The Bison handed the top-ranked Greyhounds their first Patriot League loss of the year. With the win, the Orange and Blue move to 6-3 overall and 4-1 in the league.

The game was close throughout the entire contest with three lead changes and six ties. At halftime, the teams were in a 6-6 draw.

The Bison offense made their move late in the third quarter by going on a 4-0 run. Connor O’Hara ’18 provided a strong performance for the Orange and Blue, finishing the day with four goals. Attackman Will Sands ’18 recorded one goal and four assists on the day. Sands now only needs one more goal to tally 100 on his career, an achievement only five other Bison have ever accomplished.

Midfielder Reed Malas ’19 led the team in points against the Greyhounds, along with Sands. With three goals and two assists, Malas stepped up right when the team needed him. He scored a crucial goal late in the fourth quarter to keep the momentum rolling.

“I think that our team played one of our most complete games so far. Our coaches came up with a great game plan and we executed it well as a team,” Malas said. “I don’t believe that we’ve even scratched the surface on our potential yet.”

At the end of the game, the Greyhounds came roaring with a comeback. However, the Bison defense stood their ground to seal the win. With less than a minute remaining, Hunter Newman ’20 picked off a Loyola pass for one of his team-best two takeaways.

Loyola’s Pat Spencer — two time Patriot League Offensive Player of the Year and on the Tewaaraton watch list — was limited to only one goal and two assists. A major part of Spencer’s lack of success was due to Bison goalie Christian Klipstein ’19. Klipstein finished the day with nine saves, including an impressive stop with 47 seconds left to maintain the one-goal advantage for the Orange and Blue.

Klipstein also stood tall on both of Loyola’s man-up opportunities. On the other side of the ball, the Bison offense was able to score on three of their six extra man opportunities. This proved to be a critical difference in the game.

“Any win in the Patriot League is tough, so we were definitely proud to come out with a win. This also put us in a great position in the league, so hopefully we can carry the momentum throughout the rest of the regular season,” Malas said.

Up next for the Bison is a matchup against Army West Point at 12 p.m. on March 31 Army is 5-3 on the year, including a 2-2 record in the Patriot League. In another Patriot League matchup, the Herd will once again set out to claim another victory.

 

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