Men’s lacrosse falls victim to late Fairfield goal
Hofstra men’s lacrosse suffered its third loss in four games on April 6 at James M. Shuart Stadium in a 5-4 defensive struggle against Fairfield University.
Hofstra led 4-2 at the start of the final quarter, but their dreaded fourth quarter woes continued as they were outscored 3-0 the rest of the way – highlighted by a game winner from Travis Ford with under 21 seconds left.
Head coach Seth Tierney could not hide his dismay after the game as he opened the postgame interview with his hand covering his face.
“Tough one tonight,” Seth Tierney said, breaking a long period of silence. “In the CAA [Colonial Athletic Association] conference if you don’t bring it, this is what happens.”
Indeed, the Pride did not come ready to play in this one and suffered a crushing loss against a team that lost to a Stony Brook team that Hofstra crushed 14-2 earlier this season.
Though goalie Jack Concannon and the Pride defense came to play, the offense appeared to be sleepwalking for most of the game.
Although the Pride won the faceoff battle 10-3, had more shots, more ground balls and fewer turnovers than the Stags, the additional time of possession did not matter. The Pride offense looked completely stagnant and stationary at times with a lack of off-ball movement and focus.
“You can’t win a lacrosse game with four goals, you just can’t,” Seth Tierney said.
Neither team scored in the first quarter and the score was knotted at one heading into the half. However, in the third quarter, Hofstra looked like they had found some type of a groove.
After giving up a goal to Fairfield LSM Spencer Noonan, the Pride scored three straight, highlighted by senior Second-Team All-American defender Brett Osman’s first career goal.
Ryan Tierney nearly extended the lead to 5-2 early in the fourth quarter, but his shot ricocheted off the top pipe and flew all the way to midfield.
In such a defensively dominant showdown, a measly two-goal lead seemed almost insurmountable, but Hofstra fell apart thereafter.
Colin Burke scored two goals for the Stags to tie the game up before Ford scored a devastating late-game goal that caused an uproarious cheer from the Fairfield sideline and an audible gasp from dejected Pride fans.
Falling apart in the fourth quarter continues an unfriendly trend that has hit the Pride recently. In their last three losses, Hofstra has been outscored 10-0 in the fourth quarter.
This has led to a disappointing 5-5 season thus far for a team with massive expectations after returning most of the starters from an 11-3 team last season.
Hofstra, which currently stands at 5-5 and 1-1 in the CAA, will have over a week off before they look to right the ship on Saturday at 1 p.m. at home.