EMMITSBURG, Md. – Freshman Matt Diehl (Towson, Md.) led a potent Bobcats' offense with five goals on Saturday afternoon, as the Quinnipiac University men's lacrosse team (2-6, 1-0 NEC) upended the Northeast Conference's preseason favorite Mount St. Mary's (3-5, 0-1 NEC), 12-8, at Waldron Family Stadium. QU's attack was absolutely stellar on a misty day in Emmitsburg, putting 16 of their 22 shots on target and controlling 14 of 24 face-offs.
Diehl, who was playing in his home state, was sensational offensively for the Bobcats. Diehl totaled six points in the game, adding an assist to go along with his five goals. Joining Diehl with multi-goal games was attackmen Basil Kostaras (Southlake, Texas) and Matt Kycia (West Hartford, Conn.). Kostaras had two goals and two assists and Kycia scored his first and second career goals. Michael Sagl (West Islip, N.Y.), Dylan Webster (Brampton, Ontario) and Brendan Wilbur (Hingham, Mass.) wrapped up the scoring column for the Bobcats.
Head Coach Eric Fekete knew coming into the game that a quick start was necessary to be successful against the 2011 NEC Champions. The Bobcats were up for the challenge, putting together arguably their strongest 15 minutes to date. QU controlled every faceoff (4-0) in the quarter, surrendered just one shot and found the back of the net three times on the other end.
Just 1:40 seconds after the initial whistle, Kycia opened the scoring summary with the game's first goal off a feed from Sagl. Some six minutes later, Sagl granted the Bobcats a 2-0 lead with his 13th goal of the season and Kostaras collected his eighth goal of the season in the frame's waning seconds. Wilbur assisted Kostaras on the play, as Kostaras extended his point-streak to 12 games dating back to last year.
The Bobcats carried their momentum into the second quarter, picking up right where they left off in the first. Wilbur found a wide-open Diehl just inside the yellow line, who ripped a shot to the upper, left corner of the cage for a four-goal advantage. The tally was Diehl's fourth of his rookie campaign.
However, Mount St. Mary's high powered offense finally came to life, scoring the game's next three goals to close out the first half. Bryant Schmidt, Andrew Scalley and Connor Carey each found the back of the net, leaving a 4-3 lead for Quinnipiac at the break.
After the intermission, much like the first half Quinnipiac opened the second stanza with a dominating display on offense. The Bobcats posted three straight goals in a three-minute span to take a 7-3 lead. Dylan Webster (Brampton, Ontario) ignited the surge with his team-best 15th goal of the season, Wilbur added the team's sixth goal and Kycia capped off the run eight seconds later with his second goal of the game.
The Mount responded with back-to-back goals, but QU once again had an answer. This time it was off the stick of Matt Diehl, who completed his first career hat trick with two consecutive goals. Sagl assisted the first one, while a tremendous individual effort paid off for Diehl's second tally. The two teams traded goals in the closing minutes of the third quarter, sending the Bobcats into the fourth quarter with a 10-6 advantage. Kostaras registered his second goal of the game to close out the period.
The fourth and final frame featured four goals, two from each squad. The Mountaineers struck first, but the Bobcats fired back with back-to-back goals to virtually put the game away. MSM scored with three minutes remaining, but Quinnipiac comfortably held on for their first win on the road.
Defensively, Dylan Torey (Darien, Conn.) came up big on several occasions to consistently keep the Bobcats in front. He registered 10 saves in the game, opposed to four from his counterpart. In addition to Torey, senior Chris Coppolecchia (Somers, N.Y.) caused five turnovers and collected eight groundballs in the game. QU's defense held MSM's leading scorer, Brett Schmidt, to just one goal on seven shots.
The Bobcats return to the turf next Saturday with another Northeast Conference showdown against Wagner. Faceoff is set for 1 p.m. at the QU Lacrosse Turf Field in Hamden, Conn. For all the latest news and information regarding the men's lacrosse program, please visit www.QuinnipiacBobcats.com.
Contact: Tony Distasio; email@example.com