Men's lax suffers first loss
It is amazing what can happen in a minute or two, especially on the athletic field. Sunday proved games can change in an instant, and how important it is to have momentum on your side. Three unanswered goals in that minute and a half span in the third quarter is what separated Wilmington from their third victory of the year after a disappointing 7-5 loss at Williams Stadium.
"We didn't play with the same level of intensity and energy once Alma gained controlled of the game," said head coach Domenic Marzano. "It was too much to overcome."
Between 8:48 and 7:20 of the third, Alma got a jolt of momentum when they scored on an uncontested shot, won a face-off quickly and charged Wilmington's goal for another goal. Before the Quakers knew it, they realized how fast an opponent will capitalize on the smallest of defensive mix-ups.
Wilmington began the game slowly as has been the case thus far and was fortunate to finish the first half with a 2-1 lead on goals by Alex Gossard (Galloway, OH/Hilliard Bradley) and Jalen Jackson (Hilliard, OH/Bradley.
"Alma was physically bigger than us and had a strong defense which stopped our transition play from kick-starting our offense," said Marzano.
The Quakers gave away more than their fair share of unforced turnovers in the midfield which allowed Alma to control the tempo of the game for chunks at a time.
Marzano was happy with how his young squad did fight and claw until the finish scoring some late fourth quarter goals.
"It was the first time we were down late in a game, and it is a positive sign that we came back and fought it out and didn't make it easy for Alma to run away with the game," said Marzano. "It was good game experience for us being down without any momentum. We made a little run at the end and it was just a few things went their way today and we couldn't chip away enough of Alma's lead."
Alma pushed its streak to six straight goals early in the fourth quarter to build a four-goal lead, before the Fightin' Quakers mounting their comeback attempt. Kirby Dearth (Hilliard, OH/Darby) scored with about five minutes remaining and Jackson added his second goal of the game with 48 seconds remaining in the game.
"I'm happy with our fourth quarter effort and excited to put together a full four quarters in the next game," said Marzano. "I know we are capable of stringing together four quarters as it is something we talk about as of late. We are still getting to learn a lot about each other as players and our comfort levels in how we play as well as everyone's strengths and weaknesses, so today was a good learning experience for us individually and as a unit."
Wilmington (2-1) travels to Memphis, TN to face Rhodes Saturday and Centenary Sunday. Gametimes for the games have not been announced.