Mount Ida vs. Castleton State
May 5, 2007
The Game Story:
NEWTON, Mass. (May 5, 2007) - For the fourth year in a row, the Mount
Ida College men's lacrosse team defeated Castleton State College in
the North Atlantic Conference Tournament Championship. The top-seeded
Mustangs used overtime to down the second-seeded Spartans 11-10 this
afternoon in front of an overflow crowd at the Mount Ida Athletic
Stadium. Junior attackman Andrew Cloonan (Franklin,
Mass./Franklin/Dean CC) netted the game-winning goal just 36 seconds
into the extra session.



With the win, Mount Ida (13-3, 7-0 NAC) secured a spot in 28th Annual
NCAA Division III Championship. The Mustangs are expected to take the
field for first round action on Wednesday, May 9 versus a yet to be
determined opponent. Brackets for the national tournament will be
announced tomorrow evening on College Sports Television Network from
9-10 p.m. Mount Ida, which has never fallen in 29 contests versus NAC
foes, will ride a 12-game winning streak into its first ever NCAA
Tournament.



Despite its loss today, Castleton (10-5, 6-1 NAC) is still eligible
for the Eastern College Athletic Conference Tournament. The ECAC
field will be announced in the coming days, with first round games
taking place on Wednesday.



The Spartans controlled things in the early going, scoring a pair of
man-up goals in the first 2:09 to take a quick 2-0 lead. Two straight
goals by junior midfielder John Lightbown (Melrose, Mass./Malden
Catholic) evened things up at the 9:09 mark of the first quarter.



Castleton tallied the next four goals to open up a 6-2 edge midway
through the second stanza, but Mount Ida closed the half with a
three-goal flurry to slice the deficit to 6-5 at the break. Sophomore
attackman Leo Shidler (Peabody, Mass./Peabody) recorded the final two
to help the Mustangs gain momentum heading into the second half.



Cloonan's first tally of the day knotted things up at 6-6 just over
three minutes into the third frame. Less than one minute later,
freshman midfielder Jake Rick (Rochester, N.Y./Irondequoit) scored to
put the Spartans back in front by a goal. Shidler and Lightbown
registered consecutive goals to give Mount Ida's its first lead of
the day (8-7) at the 3:39 mark of the third quarter, but senior
midfielder Adam Rosati (Guilford, Conn./Guilford) even things up at
8-8 with his third goal just over one minute later.



Rosati found the net again in the early stages of the fourth quarter
to put Castleton State in front 9-8. The Spartans maintained their
slim lead until Lightbown posted the equalizer with 5:57 remaining in
regulation. Sophomore midfielder Anthony DiMarsico (Fairport,
N.Y./Fairport) then scored at the 2:12 mark to give the Mustangs a
10-9 cushion.


With the game nearly in hand, Mount Ida committed a penalty with just
over one minute left in the fourth frame. Castleton capitalized on
its power play opportunity, as freshman attacker Geoffrey Walker
(Manchester, Vt./Burr & Burton Academy) tallied with 34 seconds on
the clock to send the contest to overtime.



In the extra frame, the Mustangs won the opening face-off and called
a timeout. Following the break, Cloonan took a feed from sophomore
attackman Brett Conley (Fairfield, Conn./Fairfield) and collected the
game-winner.



Lightbown, the Tournament's Most Valuable Player, finished with a
game-best four goals. Mount Ida also received a boost from Shidler,
who amassed a hat trick and one assist. Cloonan finished with a pair
of markers for the hosts. Freshman goalkeeper Matt Vernik (Bethany,
Conn./Amity Regional) turned in a magnificent effort between the
pipes for the Mustangs, stopping 18 shots. He improved his record to
6-1.



The Spartans were paced by Rosati, who poured in four goals.
Sophomore attacker Robbie Scanlon (Jericho, Vt./Mt. Mansfield Union)
totaled two goals and an assist, while senior midfielder Matt
VanDerKar (Manchester, Vt./Burr and Burton Academy) chipped in with
one goal and three helpers. The NAC Player of the Year scooped up a
game-high 15 ground balls. Sophomore netminder Michael Mamunes
(Manchester, Conn./Burlington CC) made nine saves in a losing effort
for the guests.



Statistically, the game was nearly even. Castleton outshot the
Mustangs 43-38 and won 15 of the 25 face-offs. The Spartans enjoyed a
50-40 edge in the ground ball column. Both squads were successful in
man-up opportunities. Castleton scored five times in eight chances,
while Mount Ida netted three goals in seven power play situations.