Robert Morris vs. Mount Saint Mary's
April 14, 2013
The Game Story:
Moon Township, Pa. – The Robert Morris University men’s lacrosse team jumped on top early by scoring six of the game’s first eight goals and held on down the stretch to take down Mount St. Mary’s, 12-11, Sunday afternoon in Northeast Conference (NEC) action at Joe Walton Stadium.

With the victory, RMU clinched a berth in the 2013 NEC Tournament to be held the first week of May at the site of the top seed.

Senior Jake Hayes (Calgary, Alberta / Central Memorial) posted a pair of goals to help the Colonial cause and also broke a notable school record in the process. Hayes has scored at least once in 18 consecutive games, which now makes him the owner of the longest such stretch in RMU history. Hayes’ fifth straight multi-goal game pushed his career long point streak to 26 games and also gave him multiple points in 18 straight contests. With Sunday’s effort, Hayes claimed his 31st multi-point game and his 26th multi-goal outing.

Redshirt senior Dave Brous (Philadelphia, Pa. / Neshaminy) made a significant contribution for the Colonials by tallying the first two goals of his career in the win. The outing also marked the first multi-point game of the veteran’s career.

In beating the Mountaineers on April 14 for the second straight year, Robert Morris had an advantage in shots while also having a higher clear percentage and committing fewer turnovers. In fact, RMU was a perfect 22-for-22 on clears, marking the most successful clears without a failed clear by Robert Morris in its past 81 games. The Colonials have also now made more turnovers than their opponent just once in their past 18 contests.

Senior midfielder Connor Martin (Maumee, Ohio / St. John's Jesuit) tallied a pair of goals and an assist, all of which came during RMU’s fast start in the first quarter, to tie his career high with three points. Martin now has three multi-goal outings in the past half dozen games.

Senior Tyler Digby (Westminster, British Columbia / New Westminster) had two goals and an assist to notch his sixth straight multi-goal game, and Digby has had at least three points in each of those performances. Digby also topped his previous career high for points in a season and now has 23 on the campaign.

True freshman attackman Luke Laszkiewicz (Oshawa, Ontario / Westminster Prep) matched the output of Digby and Martin with two scores and a helper. It was the rookie’s sixth multi-point game of the season and his fifth multi-goal effort.

True freshman midfielder Eric Rankel (Philadelphia, Pa. / Downingtown West) had one goal and added a pair of assists to post his ninth multi-point game in the team’s 11 contests thus far.

After allowing the game’s first goal early in the contest, Robert Morris would score six times in fewer than nine minutes to take a sizeable 6-2 lead after the opening frame.

RMU killed off a two-man disadvantage early in the second quarter to help maintain the margin of its lead. After a goal by the Mountaineers with the shot clock in effect, Hayes would score with just four seconds left before intermission to push Robert Morris' halftime lead to 7-3.

Mount St. Mary’s came out hot after the break, scoring four of the game’s first five second-half goals to cut its lead to just one, 8-7. The Colonials responded with three consecutive goals before the Mountaineers added one in the final seconds of the stanza, cutting the RMU edge to 11-8 after three periods.

The Mountaineers cut the lead to two early in the frame, but sophomore Jacob Ruest (Cornwall, Ontario / The Hill Academy) would follow with what proved to be the game-winner.

Mount St. Mary’s would score twice to cut the lead to 12-11 with just under six minutes left.

The Mountaineers had three more possessions with chances to tie it, but the Colonials would force turnovers on each of those chances, including causing a failed clear attempt in the waning seconds that all but sealed the victory for RMU.

Senior Ben Lewis (Cazenovia, N.Y. / Cazenovia Central) led the defensive effort for Robert Morris by causing three turnovers and scooping up five ground balls, including one that ended Mount St. Mary’s penultimate possession.

Redshirt senior Charles Ruppert (Long Island, N.Y. / Massapequa) tallied 11 saves to earn the victory between the pipes. It was his eighth game of the season with double-figure saves and the 18th such outing of his career.

Robert Morris has now won 10 of its past 11 NEC games.

Ruest is currently riding an eight game point streak.

The past four meetings between these schools have been decided by a combined six goals.

Robert Morris will continue NEC play next weekend by facing Sacred Heart. The Colonials will travel to face the Pioneers Saturday, April 20, at 1:00 p.m.