Gettysburg vs. Swarthmore
April 19, 2008
The Game Story:
GETTYSBURG, Pa. – Junior Tom O'Donnell (Montgomeryville, Pa./La Salle College) scored three goals and handed out one assist while classmate Zach Pucci (Ridgewood, N.J./Ridgewood) notched two goals and an assist as No. 2 Gettysburg clinched the Centennial Conference regular season title with a 13-5 CC victory over Swarthmore College at Shirk Field at Musselman Stadium Saturday evening.

Gettysburg (13-1, 7-0), which won its fifth straight game, will now host the Centennial Conference semifinals and final on May 2-4.

The Bullets never trailed but led only 4-2 at the half before outscoring the Garnet 9-3 over the final 30 minutes. Gettysburg won 16 of 21 face-offs and was a perfect 19 for 19 on clear attempts.

It was the second hat trick of the season for O’Donnell, who tied his career-high goal total. Sophomore Joe Brody (Bethesda, Md./Walter Johnson) and senior Ben Sufrin (Mahopac, N.Y./Mahopac) added two goals apiece for the Bullets while senior Trip Dyer (Ocean View, Del./Worcester Prep (Md.)) contributed one goal and two assists.

Junior Zachary Furshman (Miami, Fla./Kent School) made seven of his nine saves in the opening half for Gettysburg. Junior Tim Stanton (Phoenix, Md./Loyla Blakefield) won 15 of 19 face-offs and picked up a career-high eight ground balls while junior Tommy Kehoe (Coraopolis, Pa./Sewickly Academy) notched a career-best seven ground balls.

Gettysburg’s six seniors were recognized before the game, and four of the five who dressed made their final regular season home game memorable by scoring goals. In addition to Sufrin and Dyer, seniors Devin Hewitt (Groton, Mass./Holderness School) and Stu Whelehan (Fork, Md./Loyola Blakefield) also found the back of the net.

Tyler Bradshaw led Swarthmore (7-6, 1-6 CC) with two goals while Frank Mazzucco stopped eight shots in goal.

Gettysburg wasted little time getting on the scoreboard, with Sufrin scoring his first goal just 2:22 into the contest. Pucci scored with 3:45 on the clock, and the Bullets led 2-0 at the end of the first quarter.

Bradsaw cut the deficit to 2-1 when he scored four minutes into the second quarter, but O’Donnell and Hewitt converted back-to-back goals midway through the period to make it 4-1. David DeSimone cut the deficit to 4-2 when he scored for Swarthmore 5:40 before the break.

The Bullets broke the game open with a 4-0 run to start the second half. Pucci scored 2:48 in before Brody got into the act with back-to-back goals 5:09 apart midway through the third quarter. Sufrin capped the surge with his second goal as Gettysburg’s lead ballooned to 8-2 with 4:57 remaining in the period.

Ivano Ventresca stopped the bleeding when he scored with 4:28 on the third-quarter clock, and the scoreboard read 8-3 heading into the final 15 minutes.

Bradshaw struck again 35 seconds into the four quarter to pull his team to within four. After O’Donnell’s second goal, Chris Harman made it a four-goal game (9-5) again when he scored with 11:17 left. However, that would turn out to be Swarthmore’s final score, and the Bullets put the game on ice with four goals over the final 8:51. O’Donnell recorded his last goal before Dyer, freshman Chris Cahill (Nashville, Tenn./Montgomery Bell Academy), and Whelehan tacked on one tally apiece.

Gettysburg closes out its regular season next Saturday, when it visits Franklin & Marshall College in a Centennial Conference match-up.