|Sophomore Craig Nolan had a game-high three goals and Anthony Gilardi posted a career-best five assists and six points to lead the No. 8 Ohio State men's lacrosse team to a 9-2 win over Great Western Lacrosse League foe Air Force Friday in front of 995 fans in Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. The win, which moves Ohio State's winning streak to nine, improved the Buckeyes' record to 10-2 and 3-1 in the GWLL. The Falcons fall to 3-7 and 1-3 in league play.
The Buckeyes return to action at 1 p.m. Sunday when they play host to GWLL foe Denver at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium in Columbus. An Ohio State win over the Pioneers clinches at least a share of the league title and gives the Buckeyes the league's automatic bid into the NCAA tournament.
The Buckeyes scored the first four goals of the game. Shaun Lyons (Sr., Hicksville, N.Y./Hicksville) and Kyle Olson (Jr., Upper Arlington, Ohio/Upper Arlington) tallied in the first quarter, while Gilardi (Sr., Baldwin, N.Y./Baldwin) and Nolan (So., Plano, Texas/Jesuit College Prep) scored in the second. The Falcons got on the board on William Keleher's goal with less than two minutes remaining in the half. OSU went into the lockerroom at halftime with a 4-1 lead.
Buckeye Ben Wolff (So., Owings Mills, Md./Calvert Hall) scored the only goal of the third period, assisted by Ryan Laffey (Sr., Huntington, N.Y./Huntington), to put OSU up, 5-1. Ohio State outscored Air Force, 4-1, in the fourth quarter for the 9-2 final. Gilardi assisted on the first three goals of the quarter, scored by Jason Bloom (So., Coquitlam, British Columbia/Centennial), Andrew Bender (So., Wooster, Ohio/Wooster) and Nolan. Nolan ended OSU's scoring with his third goal of the game with 8:19 remaining in the game. The Falcons' D.J. Benzing scored Air Force's second goal with 1:14 left.
Tony Russo (Sr., Fallston, Md./Calvert Hall) started the game in net for the Buckeyes and played the first