Muhlenberg vs. Ursinus
April 16, 2003
The Game Story:
Freshman John Westendorf scored his fifth goal of the game with 2:28 left in overtime to give the Muhlenberg men’s lacrosse team a thrilling 9-8 season-ending win against Ursinus in a matchup of two first-year varsity programs seeking their first Centennial Conference win.

The victory snapped a seven-game losing streak for the Mules (5-7, 1-7). Four of those losses came to teams ranked in the top 15 in Division III.

“It’s nice to be ending on a good note,” said Westendorf. “We’ve had a rough four or five weeks here. This is a good step forward for next season.”

Muhlenberg took a 6-5 lead into the fourth quarter but had to come back twice to force overtime. The Bears (2-7, 0-7) scored two goals 43 seconds apart to go in front, 7-6, with 9:56 to play. Westendorf tied the score at the 7:30 mark with an unassisted goal, but Ursinus regained its one-goal lead by scoring with 4:02 on the clock.

Westendorf scored again, off a feed from freshman Dave Armstrong, with 1:44 left, to knot the score at 8-8. Freshman Joe LaBella made his 13th save with 42 ticks remaining to send the game into overtime.

The Mules won the opening faceoff of overtime when freshman Justin Hollander scooped up a loose ball. A quick shot went wide, but freshman Mike O’Malley collected the rebound and Muhlenberg set up the same play that resulted in the final goal of regulation. Armstrong passed to Westendorf, who skipped a straight-on shot past the Ursinus goalie, setting off a Mule celebration.

“It’s a play we’ve been working on the last week,” explained Westendorf. “We ran that play twice and we were 2-for-2 on it. Nothing else was working, so we decided to bring all the defensemen down low on the crease and leave me naked up top. Dave made a pinpoint pass.”

Armstrong had three assists in the game to finish the season with a team-leading 13 assists.