GAFFNEY, S.C. – Fourth-ranked Limestone combined a balanced scoring attack with a solid defensive effort in route to a 17-4 victory over eighth-ranked Saint Leo on Saturday in an NCAA Division II men’s lacrosse south region non-conference showdown at “The Rock”. The victory moved the Saints to 5-1 overall, 5-0 in the region while Saint Leo dropped to 9-2 overall and 6-2 within the region.
Limestone, which scored the first 11 goals of the game, extended a 1-0 lead after one quarter by outscoring the Lions 5-0 in the second to lead 6-0 at halftime. The Saints came out strong in third quarter scoring only 0:55 into the period and three more times over the first five minutes to push the advantage to 10-0. The Saints held Saint Leo off the board until the 3:41 mark of the third stanza, the first of three straight tallies for the Lions to close within eight early in the fourth (13:59) before a flurry of five Limestone goals over the next 9:02 of action gave the Saints a 16-3 cushion with 4:57 to play.
While Limestone had seven players register a point including six goal scorers, the defense was just as powerful. Sophomore keeper Steve Gartleman (Seaford, N.Y.) made 10 saves and yielded four goals in 55:28 of action. Gartleman entered the contest tops in NCAA Division II with a 4.90 goals against average. The Saints forced 34 Saint Leo turnovers and held an offense averaging over 43 shots to just 21. The Saints also limited the Lions to 48% (13-27) on clears as compared to the visitor’s average of .83% prior to Saturday. Limestone also won the groundball category 41-29 against a Saint Leo team that was plus-20 (50.78-30.0) heading into the contest.
As for the Limestone offense, a trio of underclassmen posted hat tricks, those by junior Brian Patridge, sophomore Jackson Decker and freshman Riley Loewen. Seniors Jake Rogalia, Mike Poerstel and Teddy Prager tallied two goals each while Rogalia added three assists to lead all scorers with five points. Finding the back of the net once apiece for the Saints were junior Sam Buppert and freshman Todd Kozak. Loewen, Patridge and Poerstel added one assist each while freshman Tor Reinholdt added a pair of helpers.
As for Saint Leo, senior Kyle Marceau scored twice with one each for senior Joe Guerin and freshman George Proechel who also added an assist. Lions’ keeper junior David Erdman made nine saves and yielded 12 goals in 51:48 of action.
Saint Leo returns to action on April 6 hosting Rollins at 6:00 p.m.