MLCA National Championships: Giffins are out; Cougars playing today

GREENVILLE, S.C. – The Westminster College men’s lacrosse team rallied to take the lead late before eventually dropping a 12-11 decision against defending Division II national champions Davenport on Tuesday at the 2012 MCLA National Championships.

The BYU men’s team faces Chapmen today 3:30 p.m. in the Division I quarterfinals. Streaming video from Greenville can be found here.

Westminster (16-4) got out to a quick start and used two Jake Arthur goals to take a 2-0 lead halfway through the first quarter. Kyle Postler scored at the 5:47 mark of the quarter to make it 3-1 and when Arthur scored his third goal of the first with 17 seconds remaining, Westminster held a 4-3 lead.

Davenport (14-5) dominated the next 20 minutes of game play. The Panthers outscored the Griffins 7-1 during that time, including a 5-0 second quarter. When Jack Turcotte scored with 9:50 remaining in the third quarter, Davenport held its largest lead of the game at 10-5.

It was at that point that Westminster began to fight back into the contest. Arthur scored his fifth goal of the afternoon with 8:36 to play in the third and started a string of six straight goals by the Griffins. Kevin Gee, Matt Hearn and Gian Sexsmith each scored to open the fourth quarter and Arthur struck again at the 8:25 mark to level the contest at 10-10.  Brett Bird scored with 4:18 on the clock to give the Griffins their first lead since the end of the first quarter.

Lyle Parks answered the Bird goal with one of his own just 22 seconds later to bring DU back even at 11-11. Westminster would have two shots turned away before Turcotte tallied the game winner for DU with 1:19 on the clock. The Panthers won the ensuing faceoff and ran the clock out to end the Griffins season.

Westminster held a 47-42 advantage in shots in the game and put 29 shots on cage. The Griffins forced 22 turnovers by DU and picked up 33 ground balls. Westminster was 0-for-2 on extra-man opportunities and allowed two goals while playing a man down.

Arthur scored his six goals on 13 shots with nine being put on goal. Bird added one assist to his goal for two points in the game. Collin Madsen failed to score on eight shots while Gee attempted seven shots. Marshall Serzen won 12-of-14 faceoffs and picked up four ground balls. Chris Burckle made 14 saves and picked up a team-best seven ground balls while protecting the Westminster goal.

Cody Cross led Davenport with four goals on nine shots. Jordan Richtsmeier recorded one goal and four assists for a team-high five points.

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