Bellarmine vs. Fairfield
March 31, 2012
The Game Story:
LOUISVILLE, Ky.—The Bellarmine University lacrosse team lost a heartbreaker this afternoon as the No. 15 Fairfield Stags scored with just 13 seconds remaining to eke out a 9-8 victory in an Eastern College Athletic Conference contest at Owsley B. Frazier Stadium.

The Knights had overcome a 5-1 halftime deficit to tie it at 7-7 midway through the fourth period only to have the Stags re-take the lead at the 5:12 mark. Bellarmine won the ensuing faceoff, and launched a relentless possession on the Stags, firing six shots before Michael Ward finally found the back of the net with a game-tying goal with just 42 seconds left in regulation.

The game appeared as if it may be heading to overtime, but Fairfield, which had already taken part in three overtime games this season, had other thoughts. After winning the face-off, the Stags called a timeout with 20 seconds remaining and ran their play to perfection as Colin McLinden hit a cutting Sam Snow for the game-winning goal.

“We can't ask for much more out of this game other than the score,” said Bellarmine Coach Kevin Burns. “We really showed a lot of heart by coming back against a very good Fairfield team.”

Burns added that he was especially pleased with the team's cohesiveness in the game. “We kept running our offense and really stuck together. No one tried to do his own thing,” he said. “I thought our defense played great the entire game,” he added.

Ward led the Bellarmine offensive attack with three goals and an assist with Colton Clark and Austin Bright adding two goals apiece. Fairfield got two goals apiece from Snow, Eric Warden and Brent Adams.

Bellarmine's Andrew Bulgarelli took all 21 face-offs for the Knights and won just over 50 percent with 11 wins against a team that entered the contest the nation's fourth-best face-off winning percentage. “(Bulgarelli) did a great job for us today,” Burns said. “He really helped keep us in the game by getting possessions.”

In goal, Bellarmine's Dillon Ward came up with 12 saves, and Fairfield's Charlie Cipriano got credit for 10.

The Stags improve to 9-1 on the season with a 2-0 ECAC record. Bellarmine falls to 3-4, 0-3 ECAC.

The Knights hit the road for their next two games, traveling to Denver on April 6 and staying in Colorado to take on Air Force on April 8.