Cornell vs. Brown
April 27, 2002
The Game Story:
ITHACA, N.Y. - Junior midfielder Chas Gessner continued his domination of Schoellkopf Field Saturday afternoon, scoring the overtime game winner at the 66:53 mark to give the No. 20 Brown Bears a 9-8 upset over the No. 7 Cornell Big Red in men's lacrosse. The goal was the fourth of the day for Gessner, who also scored two touchdowns and caught nine passes for 113 yards when Brown topped Cornell in football earlier this season.

This is the second straight season that Brown rallied to defeat Cornell in overtime. Last year, the Bears scored the only two goals of the second quarter to even the game at 7-7, and then scored in the first overtime to win it. That loss was critical to Cornell's hopes for an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament; the Big Red will have to wait another week to see if this loss was the same.

Following the game, the jersey number '10,' worn by the late Eamon McEneaney'77, was retired in a ceremony at Schoellkopf Field. McEneaney, who was killed in the World Trade Center attacks on 9/11, led Cornell to two NCAA titles and was a three-time first-team All-America selection.

Cornell held an 8-4 lead after freshman Justin Redd scored his second goal of the game with 12:06 remaining in the fourth quarter. Michael Hughes recorded an unassisted goal less than two minutes later, and then Gessner assisted on consecutive goals by Brian Miller to get the Bears within one goal. Both teams traded possessions before Gessner scored off a dodge in front of the cage with 1:24 remaining in the game. Brown goaltender Mike Levin, who ended the game with 17 saves and was arguably Brown's best player in the win, saved a Scott Lee shot late in regulation.

After a first overtime session in which neither team had a great opportunity, Cornell had its best chance after winning the faceoff in the second overtime and calling a timeout. A quick feed found senior Billy Fort alone with Levin in front of the cage. Fort shot high to Levin's left, and the goaltender made his 17th save. On the ensuing possession, Brown isolated Gessner to the left of the cage. The midfielder did the rest, dodging and beating Justin Cynar high for the game winner.

The win pushes Brown into a winner-take-all contest with Ivy rival Princeton next weekend in Providence, R.I. The victor will earn sole possession of the 2002 Ivy League championship and will receive the league's automatic qualifier to the NCAA tournament.

After a scoreless first quarter, Cornell scored four straight goals to open the second quarter. Senior Scott Lee opened the scoring 2:59 into the quarter, and Redd followed with an unassisted goal 40 seconds later. Senior Galen Beers and Fort also added unassisted goals in the quarter, but Michael Hughes got Brown on the scoreboard with 41 seconds remaining in the half.

Brown and Cornell traded goals throughout the third quarter, as the Big Red was able to maintain a three-goal lead at 7-4. Jonathon Thompson scored once and Gessner scored twice for Brown, but goals by Lee, Ian Rosenberger and Colin Crawford answered each Brown tally. Fort assisted on two of the goals, but five of the Big Red's eight goals were unassisted.

This was the first game this season that freshman Sean Greenhalgh didn't record a goal. The Brown defense refused to leave him around the crease and instead forced other Big Red players to dodge and shoot. Cornell outshot Brown 49-32, but Levin's play kept Brown in the game long enough for the Bears' offense to get into a flow.

Cornell will travel to Geneva, N.Y., next Saturday to play its regular-season finale at Hobart.