Un-ranked Haverford College beat previously unbeaten and 2nd-ranked Gettysburg College, 6-5. The win over Gettysburg was Haverford's first ever after 23 straight losses. First-team All-Centennial midfielder Dean Granoff had his biggest day of the year with three goals, while senior goalie KC Peterson proved to be the difference maker coming off an injury with 21 saves for the Black Squirrels. Gettysburg had five different scorers and quite a few chances to take back the lead, but fell short.
Haverford needed a smart and efficient game plan to beat Gettysburg. Especially after Gettysburg jumped out to a 2-0 lead with unassisted goals from sophomores Rob Triplett (5:00 in) and Drew Duckworth (9:00 mark). Dean Granoff notched his first of three on the day with 4:13 left to play to cut the lead to 2-1. Granoff chose an appropriate day to get back on the scoring trail. The junior had 39 points last spring and had only been able to notch 5 thus far in Haverford’s four opening games.
Gettysburg would find a way to sneak another one in before the end of the period as senior Trip Dyer stretched the lead to 3-1 for the Bullets. On the day, Gettysburg had a lot of success at the face-off circle, an area that had been a question mark heading into the season. Senior Jimmy Gates has stepped in nicely to replace ’06 graduate and All-American Chris Renzi. Gates went 5-for-5 in the first quarter, and 10-for-14 on the day (has been an impressive 47 of 62 for .758% on the season).
The defenses would tighten up and make it more of a defensive battle heading into the second quarter. The Haverford offense managed to slip two past Gettysburg First-Team All-American goalie Pat Vaughan following methodical possessions.
“We just played hard, we were a little bit more patient on offense. Not in holding the ball, but in not taking the first shot that came our way. I think we did a pretty good job of taking good shots and I think that’s why a couple of them fell early,” said Haverford coach Mike Murphy.
“Like any other goalie, he’s a good goalie, but he’s not that different. He’s got a little bit of a stylistic difference from other goalies, but good shots go. We did a good job of taking good shots and that’s what I meant by being patient on offense. We didn’t dodge to shoot, we dodged and when the slide came we passed the ball around once or twice and when the ball got to the backside, that guy would have a much better shot. That’s a harder save for a goalie moving off a pass than it is just watching a dodger. I think we did a pretty good job of generating high quality shots and finishing a couple of them. We didn’t score a lot of goals, but we scored enough.”
Gettysburg would again grab the last goal of the quarter. This time it gave them the 4-3 halftime lead following senior midfielder Kevin Freehill’s 7th goal of the season.
Both defenses had played well to the halfway point, but they clamped down even further in the second half. The third quarter was where Haverford essentially won the game. Haverford freshman Brian Fleishhacker from Manhasset, NY, notched his 11th goal of the season tied the game at 4. His goal took some momentum for Haverford with 6:49 to go. Dean Granoff would notch his 2nd on the day off a Shane Hafer feed just over two and a half minutes later. Granoff’s 2nd gave Haverford its first lead of the day, one they wouldn’t relinquish.
The momentum shift came as well on the heels of some solid defensive efforts on the part of Haverford in the quarter. Gettysburg went 0-for-3 on extra-man in the quarter. While Haverford performed well on man-down, Gettysburg had some noticeable trouble generating any looks. Overall, the Bullets were 0-for-6 man-up on the day. In defensive struggles such as this, those opportunities have to be capitalized on.
“I think clearly the big thing for us was how well our defense played. I don’t know how many times we were man-down, but I don’t remember them scoring a man-up goal on us. That was a big thing for us. Our goalie played great. It was KC’s first game back,” said Murphy.
Haverford senior goalie KC Peterson hurt his knee in a pre-season scrimmage against Widener. He was forced to miss their opening four games. Freshman JP Cashiola stepped in and performed well for the Black Squirrels, highlighted by a 17 save performance in 9-8 loss to Hampden-Sydney. However, having Peterson back appeared to give Haverford a little more life. In that third quarter, Peterson registered 9 saves.
“It was great. He kind of came back a little bit in practice this week, we were going to see how he was going to do. He was partial for a day or two, didn’t really do a lot of drills with contact and stuff. Then the last day or two of practice, Thursday-Friday he came in and was pretty much full-go and was good, so that got guys excited too. Our freshman, JP Cashiola, did a great job in those four games while KC was out. So we feel good about our situation in the cage with both of those guys. And it makes them that much more competitive during practice,” commented Murphy.
Haverford grabbed a quick goal to start the 4th quarter. With only 1:03 gone in the quarter, junior Mike Distler found classmate Dean Granoff, who put in what would ultimately prove to be the game winner. After a Zach Pucci goal cut the lead to 6-5 with 11:29 to play, both defenses shut the door. Gettysburg had ample opportunities to cut into the lead late, but couldn’t generate much from their offensive possessions. Peterson contributed four saves in the quarter. And Vaughan was pulled in order for the Gettysburg defense to double the ball as they put in his quicker back-up, sophomore Zachary Furshman. When they applied the pressure late, Gettsyburg was able to force the needed turnovers. . They were successful on 7-of-8 clearing attempts in the final period and they even possessed the ball for nearly the last minute and a half. Their offense, however, couldn’t get the looks. Peterson turned away two forced shots in the last minute to hold on for the upset win.
While this season has been a crazy one with upsets and people throwing the word parity around in all divisions, today’s upset may take the cake. Gettysburg College has beaten Haverford 23 times since they started playing each other in 1980. Often those games haven’t been close. Since Mike Murphy took over at Haverford for the 2003 season, the games have gotten closer. In 2002, Gettysburg dropped Haverford 24-4. In 2003, Gettysburg needed overtime to beat Haverford. Parity is when a team overcomes a history like that and can beat a school with more than twice as many students on a field with 3 yards of room between the sideline and a 4-foot snow wall after a 24-hour postponement.
“It seems like every year we have a game like this. The first year was with Mike Fischette and Eric Seideman and Dan Mones and all those guys and we took these guys to overtime and didn’t quite finish it off. The next year we beat F&M (9-5, F&M ranked 10th at the time) and then Hampden-Sydney (9-8 in 2005), then last year Dickinson (10-9 in 2006) and now this,” said Murphy. “I feel like we’ve had one of these every year. I think the key is going to be to get a couple of these a year. We’ll know we’ve continued to continue to move up as a program if we get a couple of these in a year and that’s what we want to do. We have another shot against Geneseo, another really good program.”
The victory was a big one for the Haverford team, and it definitely hurts Gettysburg. History, however, tells us that Gettysburg will be okay. This was the first time since 2004 that Gettysburg had lost a Centennial Conference game. It also marks just their fourth regular season Centennial Conference loss since 2000. The loss will likely give them a little fire to get their offense in gear, because the defense is there for a very successful season.
“That’s a great team, Gettysburg. Obviously everyone gives them their best shot and we played one of our best games today. I give Gettysburg a lot of credit for making us earn that today,” said Murphy.
Gettysburg should feel good about how their defense played. They held Haverford to just 17 total shots, with only 12 successfully on cage. Vaughan made six saves, while Haverford was able to put away the six they needed. The offense, however, needs to find some leadership as they head into Centennial play. They are still struggling with the extensive losses from graduation last year. Their entire starting attack from 2006 graduated – Trip Dyer stepped in early last year for the injured All-American Chase Stewart and is the only player back for that unit. The other loss that really hurt them was the ineligibility of Jared Harriman, who was a 2006 2nd-team All-American with 47 points as a junior. With those losses, they looked like a unit today that was still struggling to find an offensive identity.
“We didn’t hit more shots than they did. They played smart, they played hard. I think we might have gotten a little anxious on offense there towards the end,” said Gettysburg head coach Hank Janczyk.
Janczyk’s comments were probably a bit of an understatement. Gettysburg out-shot Haverford, 37-17 with 26 of them on cage.
“I really don’t know what to say, I thought we played hard. I thought we got up and down the field, we played pretty good defense, we just didn’t put the ball into the cage.”
|Dean Granoff||(3, 0)|
|Mike Distler||(1, 1)|
|Max Tcheyan||(1, 1)|
|Shane Hafer||(0, 1)|
|Brian Fleishhacker||(1, 0)|
|Kc Peterson||21 (0.808)|