Men’s lacrosse clips Wagner’s wings

Luke Yost, Contributor

MOON TOWNSHIP– The Robert Morris men’s lacrosse team (3-7, 2-2 NEC) dominated the Wagner Seahawks (2-9, 0-3 NEC) thanks to a strong second half en route to a 17-6 win. Another reason for the win was Corson Kealey scoring six goals in today’s game. This is the third game that Kealey has scored at least five goals. Here is how it all went down.

The scoring was opened up by Corson Kealey just three minutes into the contest. Kealey collected a pass and drove to the right side of the net, and his shot was able to find the far side of the goal.

Moments later, the Seahawks were looking to respond. Wagner was able to get the ball below the goal line and set up their offense. Alex Hager was able to maintain the Colonials lead by stopping a series of Wagner shots.

After the great effort by Hager, the Colonials offense rode the momentum to another goal. Corson Kealey found the back of the net once again for the Colonials.

The Seahawks were able to build some offense after a strong defensive showing in the other end. Robert Morris forced the ball deep in their offensive zone and threw shots at the goal, but Matt Sefcik made a couple of great saves.

Wagner collected the ball and got themselves back into the game.

A series of passes pushed the ball up to Wager’s Nic Ancona. Ancona found teammate John Norton, and Norton buried the shot past Hager for his ninth of the season. Robert Morris’ lead shrunk to 2-1.

Three minutes later, Norton was able to find the back of the net once again near the end of the first quarter. At the end of the first quarter, the score was tied 2-2.

It only took Kealey a minute and twenty seconds into the second quarter to complete the hat trick. His goal was followed up by another Colonial goal. Tyson Gibson was able to score his 17th goal of the season, and in doing so gave the Colonials a 4-2 lead.

Wagner was able to take advantage of the Colonials lack of discipline. Ancona was able to crack the goal column when he scored a man-up goal with a little over 10 minutes remaining in the half.

The two teams traded goals to end the second quarter. Kealey and Jake Boudreau scored for the Colonials. The Wagner goals were scored by Dylan Kaminski and Spencer Kaufman. When half time came around, the Colonials held a slim 6-5 lead.

Kealey scored perhaps the best goal of the game. After a shot by Matt Schmidt was saved by Sefcik, the ball was picked up by a Wagner defender. Kealey was able to disrupt the ball carrier to the point that the Wager player put the ball in his own net.

Kealey scored his sixth goal of the game with 12:22 remaining in the third quarter. This kind of scoring output is not uncharted territory for Kealey as he had six goals against Sacred Heart four weekends ago.

The offense continued to flow for the Colonials. Brad McCulley and Austin Popovich scored their sixth goals of the season, pushing the RMU lead to six goals.

The Colonials second leading scorer, Ryan Smith, jumped on the scoring train. Smith scored back-to-back goals for RMU. His second goal was assisted by the goalie, Hager. Hager picked up the ball, ran up the field with it and set up the offense.

“He does it on the fly,” said RMU head coach Andrew McMinn. “We give our guys free rein at the defensive end to push in transition. We want to get number advantages with anyone that we can. We trust him with the ball in his stick. He understands how to run our breaks and he does it from time to time.”

Tyson Gibson scored for RMU. His goal was followed by a Popovich goal. At the end of the third quarter, the Colonials were comfortably in front 14-5. RMU outscored Wagner eight to zero in the third quarter.

Hank Ontiveros ended the scoring drought for Wagner with a goal in the early moments of the fourth quarter, but the Colonials still held an eight goal lead.

Robert Morris pushed the lead back to nine thanks to Brandon Suloff. Suloff gathered the ball behind the net. The freshman attackman took a couple of steps out from behind the net, then spun back to his right and fired the shot into the back of the net.

The Colonials took advantage of their first man-up advantage. Matt Schmidt scored the man-up goal for RMU. This goal gave the Colonials a 16-6 lead.

The late discipline issues continued for Wagner. McCulley scored on the only other man-up opportunity for the Colonials.

The clock mercifully ended just a mere 24 seconds after that goal. The dominate third quarter propelled the Colonials to a 17-6 win, that and the six goals scored by Kealey.

“We had that conversation today with all of our attackman of how much of an influence they have on our overall success. Korson has stepped up tremendously in the last few weeks here,” said McMinn.

Tyson Gibson tallied six points in the game. This is the fifth game this year that Gibson had at least five points.

Robert Morris won and improved to a 2-2 conference record after a 0-2 start. Last year, RMU started conference play 0-2.

“Year to year you see some similarities,” said McMinn. “Our focus is on what we have to continue to do next. We’ve had that mindset from the start and that’s our mindset right now as we move on to next week.”

Next week the Colonials head to Bethlehem, Pennsylvania to battle the Lehigh Mountain Hawks (7-4, 5-1 Patriot League). That game is set for Wednesday, April 10, at 5 p.m.