Ithaca Downs Nazareth 7-5

Ithaca Downs Nazareth 7-5

Ithaca Downs Nazareth 7-5

Ithaca Downs Nazareth 7-5

The drive from New Jersey to Ithaca, NY consists of a three hour journey through a Bob Ross painting with an endless fully budded tree line on the verge of exploding in living color. Once off the highway there's still a half hour of winding road past old farms complete with dilapidated cars on cinder blocks. At the end of it all lies a quaint college town and the home of the Ithaca Bombers. The trip was well worth it even without a radio. Today, in crisp weather warmed by the sun, the Bombers defeated the Nazareth Golden Flyers for the first time in school history with a final tally of 7-5.

It was like watching playoff hockey. Both teams played insanely disciplined defense despite a boat load of penalties. The amount of fast breaks could probably be counted on one hand. Don't let the low score fool you though. These teams got up and down the field all day, it's just that the defensive players were with the offensive players virtually every step of the way. This essentially was a playoff game for both teams being members of the Empire 8. Ithaca had lost to Hartwick earlier in the season for their only loss in the conference. Nazareth had one loss as well and Hartwick and RIT were in the same boat as well with one loss. RIT handed Hartwick their second loss today convincingly with a 17-7 final. Now, the top two teams, Ithaca and RIT each have one loss and one game left in the conference against each other on May 4th. How's that for scheduling. Whichever team wins gets the AQ for the Empire 8.

Ryan Martin spearheaded the defensive stand with 17 save today for Ithaca. Interestingly enough, he was pulled in his last two starts, but Head Coach Jeff Long saw fit to stay with his number one guy and it paid off. Martin said after the game,"I got pulled early in my last two games against Hartwick and Oneonta, but Coach believed in me." He said ,"We just played straight up man to man. it was similar to the way we played Cortland, but the difference was our middies didn't get beat." Nazareth wasn't as thrilled with their goal tending. They pulled the starter in Mike Darmetko at the half after a five goals and four saves performance. Travis Kuhl replaced him making 4 saves and allowing two in the second half.

Ithaca won the game with superior outside shooting and great man down defense. The Bombers took ten penalties and the only time they allowed a man-down goal was when they were two men down. Nazareth had good ball movement on their EMO's; they just couldn't get anyone open on the crease and their outside shooting was impudent. Ithaca, however, was able to cash in on three outside cranks which the goalies could not be faulted for. Two were from Attackman Sam Griffo and the third from the Aussie Dennis Juleff.

And now for the play by play. Ithaca's face off man Josh Marksberry won the opening face, but Nazareth got the first good opportunity after totally thwarting Ithaca's attempt. Jared Koopman drove to the front of the cage for the Golden Flyers and managed a backhand shot that missed the cage. Juleff hit the post at 10:05, but the tone was clearly set by this point. Both clubs were playing outstanding defense. At 9:19 Ithaca broke the ice. Jeff Welch cut across the top of the box from his right to left and as his shooting angle dwindled he passed back against the grain to attackman Morris Jemal who found himself all alone on the crease to the goalies right. He faked high and shot low along the right pipe, 1-0. The teams would be fruitless until the 2:35 mark of the first quarter. After back and forth play PJ Rosencrans got loose on a break and split to his right in transition to beat Ryan along the left pipe and tie the game for Nazareth, 1-1. Ithaca took a penalty at 2:20 and as it expired Juleff left early from the midfield to play defense incurring another violation. Jarod Koopman got off a laser from the righty crank spot, but the stick side high shot was stuffed by Ryan.

Nazareth drew first blood in the second quarter. Justin Wahl posted up against Ithaca long pole Kevin Curtin from 12 yards out to the goalies left. He backed his way in and turned to the inside firing a lefty shot low that put Nazareth up 2-1. Ithaca's face off specialist Marksberry didn't give them any time to enjoy it. He won the next face clean and beat everyone to the cage before beating Darmetko with a bounce shot at 13:17, 2-2. PJ Rosencranz got the next quality chance for the Golden Flyers working his way to the front of the cage, but he drilled Ryan in the head standing right on the crease at 10:20. Only 15 seconds later Dennis Juleff had the best goal of the game for the Bombers. It was a simple sweep to the left. Juleff got a step on his man with a little split dodge, but he was only three yards inside the restraining line dead center when he ripped a side arm shot to the upper right corner for a 3-2 Ithaca lead. To shoot on the run, side arm, with that much velocity and accuracy is truly something special. While on the subject of Juleff. This kid has some serious talent and size at 6'2" and 200 lbs. The guy can run all day too. It appears that the only thing stopping him from completely dominating is a lack of gear changing ability. Nazareth's Justin Wahl got inside his defender Jeffrey Tousant, but Tousant never gave up and checked his stick as he was about to shoot. the game turned to crap for a brief stint with players throwing errant passes out of bounds and all around sloppy play, but both teams participated so it was a wash.

With 4:03 left in the half the Bombers struck again. Sam Griffo got his first of three on a delayed call. Freshman Matt Casey fed Griffo from behind. Griffo fielded the pass in the lefty crank spot with his right hand and ripped an upper cut to the short high right corner from 14 yards out, 4-2. Nazareth was man down for the next face, but PJ Rosencranz won the draw and drove hard to the Bombers net nearly scoring with a one handed shovel shot. He didn't score, but he succeeded in drawing a foul. The ball was worked by Justin Wahl, but senior defenseman Tim Favarro ripped him with a sweet over the head check. Push call was made on ensuing fight for ground ball and awarded back to Nazareth. At 3:08 their were clock problems trying to deal with all the penalties, but after all was said and done Wahl took the ball at Favaro again with a similar outcome. Wahl was able to recover the loose ball and time out was called by Nazareth coach Rob Randell. The ball was put back into play and there was quickly another penalty when Toussant wouldn't allow his man to move freely on the crease. With the delayed call on Ithaca's Scott Guerra took the opportunity to run through a pick as hard as he could drawing another penalty. Guerra wound up playing defense against the driving attacker and was a hair from drawing an additional slash call. The ball hit the ground and Naz had a two men up field to play with. They worked the ball to Chad Kuczek for a lefty bounce shot that curled underneath the crossbar from about 14 yards out to Ryan's left at 1:55, 4-3. After the next face off the swarm of players fighting for the ball became unruly until Nazareth's Rosencranz emerged clean. He sprinted towards the cage and ripped a 15 yard shot as if time was about to run out, but there was a minute left and no back up. the shot sailed wide and Ithaca cleared off the inbound. Julleff headed for the cage with time running out beating three men in the process, but his shot was wide as well. The difference was he had back up. With literally no time left Brian Weil in bounded the ball from behind to Sam Griffo for an instant replay of his first goal. With so little time left and no room for mental breakdowns this was a costly goal for the Flyers as Griffo shouldn't of had that kind of time. The goal beat the buzzer with zero seconds on the clock, 5-3.

Justin Wahl came across on the opening face off after possession was call and crushed an Ithaca with a clean hit. The NCAA has some wacky rule about the number of steps you can take before hitting a guy or something like that which penalized the attackman for great hustle and a great hit. Matt Casey bobbled the ball at the top of the box on Ithaca's man up and Nazareth was able to escape clean. Chad Kuczek got off a sweet lefty crank for Nazareth, but Ryan was equal to the task. Ithaca cleared and called time out. What ever was set up failed because they actually got called for failure to advance. Nazareth started to pour it on and they got Ithaca's defense to start sliding. The problem was they were never able to find the open man and instead of moving the ball the player who was doubled would run away and the defense would recover easily. Ithaca made it 6-3 at the 9:29 point of the third. Morris Jemal curled wide to his right from behind and hit Griffo cutting on the crease for a lefty quick stick low. Later Nazareth got another man-up at 8:28 for a silly delay of game when a Bomber through the ball a little too far out of bounds after a change of possession call at the midfield. Nazareth again got nothing but a far outside shot which missed the cage as time expired.

From this point on Ithaca totally lost direction on offense. Naz defenders were chasing them all over the field when they had possession and they seemed overwhelmed leaving the game in the defense' hands. They got called for failure to advance three times in the third quarter. Ithaca's defense was more than up to the challenge until the 4:01 mark of the third. Jarod Koopman swept to his right from the top and hit Avery Burke who was flanking him underneath. Avery caught the ball and took two more steps before shooting the ball low and away along left pipe from about 8 yards out, 6-4. Ithaca's Nick Mayer almost replied for the Bombers with a righty crank that had the back of the net written all over it, but Travis Kuhl smothered the low shot.

In the fourth quarter Ithaca scored after killing another penalty. Juleff ran down the left side and when he was about five yards from goal line extended he turned and fed Brian Weil cutting across the crease for a 7-4 lead. Ithaca gave Nazareth a few more man ups, but Ryan stood tall saving outside shots that were high and ones he saw all the way. With 1:43 left in the game Chad Kuczek got the ball on a rare break in transition and scored from 12 yards out with a lefty crank shot that was LOW, 7-5. That would be all the scoring on the day. Ithaca still has life and they made history in the process.

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Ithaca vs. RIT
    by (#28555) on 4/27/02 @10:34PM
I just wanted to correct an error in the game recap. Ithaca will host RIT Saturday, May 4 at 1pm. The time given in the recap is incorrect. The game will be simulcast on radio stations 91.7 WICB and 105.9 VIC in Ithaca, both of which are accessible over the Internet at This is a true championship game and I for one am really looking forward to this one.
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RIT Ithaca
    by (#14626) on 4/28/02 @10:01AM
I predict RIT will beat Ihtaca 10-7 with four goals coming in the third quarter. Go RIT!
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Ithaca RIT
    by (#28685) on 4/28/02 @1:56PM
ithaca is going to beat rit plain and simple--the bombers have a tenacious defense--some of the best dmiddies and long poles around--this game, just like the naz game will come down to defense and one or 2 goal margin--go bombers
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Ithaca huh?
    by (#25846) on 4/28/02 @3:24PM
if ithaca iz gonna beat rit simple and plain, then y r u only predicting a 2-goal margin of victory? rit has been on a roll of sorts and right now u just dont know what ithaca team iz gonna show up and play them....
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ithaca rit
    by (#28685) on 4/28/02 @3:55PM
ithaca is gonna win becasue we deserve it--we work way to hard in practice to lose to rit--we want it more
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    by (#25846) on 4/28/02 @4:13PM
u deserve it? WOW, all i can say iz wow.. come now man EVERYONE can make that claim about deserving this that or the other...working way to hard in prac? well theres something we just dont hear every day from every team in the western hemisphere...if u want it more, prove it on the 4th, and show up wit ur A game....if u lose admidt rit was the better team that day
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(no subject)
    by (#24723) on 4/28/02 @10:15PM
congrats to the bombers on a great win yesterday! as a former player it was great to hear them finally get a win against naz. good luck next week and go make a statement in the tourney, and tell naz better luck next year
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HSC vs W&L
    by (#27033) on 4/28/02 @1:03PM
Did anybody go the game? What happened with HSC only scoring three goals? Did W&L just crush HSC?
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    by (#3412) on 4/28/02 @2:52PM
Yeah, did anyone see that game? wlblos? reckoning? Anyone? Is anyone gonna start talking about how overrated the W&L team is? I'm not sure, wasn't at the game. Was 3 goals just not enough to beat a soft overrated team?
Tankerbell, Danny, where are you guys on this? Did you get barred from the site?
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Giving the Generals their due!
    by (#26038) on 4/29/02 @9:16AM
Hate to do it, but got to give it! I was there, and W&L's defense shut down the Tigers. No excuses, no nothing,they flat beat them. I hate this with every inch of my being, but here it goes...

Congrats W&L, you deserved it!
I just hope there is a rubber match!
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H-SC and W&L 7-1 in ODAC, timing leaves W&L champs
    by (#25928) on 4/28/02 @4:43PM
I was at the game and H-SC did pretty well in the first quarter and were up 2-1 after the first. The problem was that H-SC called both of their time outs in the first quarter, which wasn't the smartest idead. Then when W&L started to go on their run in the second quarter H-SC didn't have any TO's left to reorganize. It was 5-2 at halftime. Then H-SC came out in the third and scored to make it 5-3, but then again called both of their time outs within 2 minutes of each other in the third quarter. After the third it was 6-3. Then with no time outs remaining for the last half of the third and the entire fourth W&L was able to score a few more goals. It was 6-3 for most of the fourth and then W&L scored to make it 7-3. Finally H-SC pulled out their goalie in the final 2 min to try and get the ball back and W&L scored on an open goal to make it 8-3. Basically H-SC did not play that well, and definitly didn't play as well as they could have. They got shots on goal, but they weren't able to put them in like they have in the past. W&L tried to run a more ball control offense and were successful at it. The deciding factor was basically that H-SC wasn't able to get their offense going and finish their shots on goal. Having a time out in the second quarter or the fourth may have helped settle things down a little for them, but that theory was never able to be tested. W&L played a good game though. So now H-SC has beaten W&L once and W&L has beaten H-SC once. Both teams are great teams, but the timing of W&L's win leaves them as the ODAC champs. Both teams will be tough draws for any other team in the NCAA Tournament.
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    by (#28893) on 4/29/02 @11:54PM
i think the key to W&L pulling off the win against sydney was when the game ended and they had more goals.
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the key
    by (#28897) on 4/30/02 @12:00AM
clearly the key was the astounding play of bitfin and the other fat defensemen for H-SC. Also Jeremy was clearly the best fat goalie on the field saturday.
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Ahh, there you are testerosta
    by (#25933) on 4/30/02 @9:03AM
So, you are back to talking crap now. Funny, you didnt have much to say at all after the HSC win in lexington. In fact, you didnt have a goddamn thing to say. Why is that? If you are going to run your mouth, at least be man enough to step up to the plate when your team loses. W&L brought their A game to Sydney on saturday and played well. HSC played flat, and didnt seem to have much going at all. I hope we see yall again in the tourney. One win a piece, a third game would be nice.
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h-sc done
    by (#28897) on 4/30/02 @2:10PM
I wasn't talking trash cause the neo-fascist administrators kicked me off when you and are other losers fans started whining about my language. A third game will be nice for us, cause like last saturday we will not be coming off exams, and will not be rusty.
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    by (#25933) on 4/30/02 @2:37PM
Did you mean to say "unlike last Saturday?" because your sentence doesn't make any sense. Regardless, I missed your skillfully crafted and wonderfully witty banter after the game on the 14th, but was not surprised to see you re-emerge after Saturday's game. Looks like you can only speak for your team if they win ( dont pull this "they kicked me off the site crap." You could easliy have created a new name, like the one you use now, you just couldn't face the music) I think being rusty had some affect on the entire ODAC tourney. Next year both teams should not finish with such mild opponents. HSC and W&L both looked pretty rusty versus Lynchburg and Roanoke in first round play. Congrats on the ODAC, I guess its poetic justice that we stole it from yall last year, and you guys returned the favor this year.
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you are dumb
    by (#28897) on 4/30/02 @9:42PM
no i meant "like last saturday" since last saturday we were not coming off exams, and we crushed you. the first time we played h-sc we were coming off exams, do you understand now?
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    by (#25933) on 5/01/02 @11:18AM
Yall had exams the week before the 14th? I thought yall were going on Spring Break then? It must have been mid-terms, right? And that isnt much of an excuse really. Look, we beat yall, you beat us. Let's play one more time and then one of us will have to shut up.
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    by (#28897) on 5/01/02 @1:36PM
i'm not gonna sit here and explain our schedule to you, but yes they were finals before the 14th. so yeah lets play one more time, and you can go crying back to farmville.
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One more round.
    by (#25933) on 5/01/02 @2:53PM
If I go crying back to Farmville, it isnt going to be because of a lacrosse game. It will be because of the fact that I live in Farmville.
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Washington College
    by (#22795) on 4/28/02 @4:37PM
What a shame this team will not be in the ployoffs! I hope you do not drink your year away this week, you still have The War on the Shore!
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Washington College not out yet!
    by (#25928) on 4/28/02 @4:51PM
Washington College still has a shot at getting into the tourney this year. The tournament was expanded to 16 teams and includes 2 bids to independent and non AQ conference teams, and 2 bids to AQ conference teams that did not win their conferences.
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    by (#27033) on 4/28/02 @7:43PM
Both teams should get these bids. They are both as good as any of the top 5 teams in division 3.
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completely correct
    by (#25928) on 4/28/02 @8:03PM
I believe you are completely correct. WAC and Hampden-Sydney should get the 2 bids for the non winners of AQ conferences. I'd hope that the NCAA selection committee allows for some new match ups in the tournament though and doesn't seed the teams so Gettysburg has to play WAC and W&L has to play Hampden-Sydney for a third time this year until later in the tourney.
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Go Bombers!
    by (#29118) on 5/02/02 @2:21PM
Big ups to the whole Ithaca team! Especially that Ryan Martin kid. I have seen him play in person, and from the game recap it sounds like he is back to playing like the great goalie he is. Viva las bombas!!!!!!
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