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Men’s Lacrosse

Irish come up short in comeback, fall to No. 10 Cornell

| Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Another back-and-forth game failed to go Notre Dame’s way, as the No. 12 Irish suffered a stinging 11-9 defeat against No. 10 Cornell on Sunday as their fourth-quarter rally fell just short.

The game began slowly with both teams struggling to generate goal-scoring opportunities. A strong press from the Big Red (8-4, 2-2 Ivy League) gave the Notre Dame (6-5, 1-2 ACC) defense some issues in the clearing game early on, leading to a couple of uncharacteristic turnovers. Both teams did an effective job of forcing the opposing offense to take contested shots, and a number of shots sailed wide of the cage in the first few minutes.

After roughly four minutes of play, Irish junior midfielder Bryan Costabile put Notre Dame on the board first. After batting down a pass by Cornell freshman goaltender Chayse Ierlan in front of the cage, Costabile scooped up the loose ball and found the back of the cage for an unassisted goal. However, Cornell responded just a few minutes later. Senior midfielder Jake McCulloch zipped a perfect pass from the left wing to junior attackman Jeff Teat waiting on the back post, who flipped a wrister past Irish junior goaltender John Zullo to tie the game at one.

Allison Thornton | The Observer
Irish freshman attack Griffin Westlin looks to beat his defender during Notre Dame’s 13-10 win over Syracuse on Mar. 30.

After a low-scoring first quarter, both offenses found their rhythm in the second period. Zullo made difficult kick saves on consecutive possessions, but wasn’t as lucky on Cornell’s third possession. His left-footed save deflected to oncoming junior midfielder Cooper Telesco, who fired a shot into the cage for a rebound goal. With 7:42 to play in the half, Irish junior attack Brian Willets tied the game again with a bouncer from the right wing. Three minutes later, Cornell senior attackman Clarke Petterson fired a turnaround shot over Zullo’s left shoulder to put Cornell back in front.

With 1:58 to go in the half, Notre Dame was given a 30-second man-up advantage after Big Red redshirt-senior short-stick defensive middie Kason Tarbell was called for a push. Costabile took just eight seconds thereafter to tally his second goal of the afternoon. With just over 30 seconds to play in the period, Cornell sophomore midfielder Jonathan Donville skipped a low shot past Zullo to put the Big Red up 4-3. With time winding down, the Notre Dame defense forced a turnover and found Brian Willetts on the fast break. The junior sprinted around the cage and dropped a pass to cutting junior long-stick midfielder Eric Restic, who ripped a bouncer into the cage to score his first-career goal with one second left in the half, tying the game at four apiece heading to the intermission.

Both offenses continued to trade punches in the third. Teat put Cornell back in front with a sidearm scorcher off a pass from sophomore and fellow attackman John Piatelli. Willets and sophomore midfielder Morrison Mirer then scored on consecutive possessions to reclaim the lead for Notre Dame. A few minutes later, Telesco ripped a shot over Zullo’s right shoulder to tie the game at six. The turning point in the game came with 1:27 to go in the third. After a big defensive stop by Notre Dame, normally sure-handed sophomore defender Arden Cohen failed to clear along the sideline, tossing an errant pass to the middle of the field that was picked off by Clarke Petterson. The senior, in the right place at the right time, scored unassisted to give Cornell a 7-6 lead.

From there, the Big Red seized the game’s momentum and built a commanding fourth quarter lead behind three more goals as part of a 5-0 scoring run. Petterson, McCulloch and Telesco scored the first three goals of the final stanza to give Cornell a 10-6 advantage. The Irish did not go away quietly though, as Costabile, sophomore attack Connor Morin and senior attack Brendan Gleason all scored with less than six minutes to play to get the Irish within one. However, Cornell’s Jonathan Donville scored with 2:42 to shutter the Notre Dame comeback and seal the fifth loss of the season for the Irish

Notre Dame will face off against North Carolina at Arlotta Stadium this Saturday at noon in the final regular season matchup for the Irish.

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