Penn State picks up a much-needed win, 15-13. A battle of two Big Ten Teams, both ranked in the D1 Top 20 saw a spirited contest.
Ohio State (1-2) ranked 12th, journeyed to Panzer Stadium to battle the 15th ranked Penn State Nittany Lions (1-2). The home team had lost its first two games, both Conference matchups, and found themselves behind the eight balls.
The Lions roared out to a 3-0 edge thanks to Dylan Foulds (4g), the reliable, TJ Malone (5g,2a) which was a career-best, and another from Foulds before Ohio State woke up. Scott White (1g,1a) answered the bell to cut it to 3-1. Foulds completed a first-quarter hat trick. Grant Mitchell (1g,1a) had a quick response to get it to a two-goal PSU lead at 4-2.
That lasted all of one minute. Malone netted his 6th of the season to end the beginning stanza with Penn State in charge, 5-2.
Twenty-five seconds in, Bobby Burns (1g) gave the home team its biggest lead of the day at 6-2. Jackson Reid (2g,1a) and Tre LeClaire (3g) scored a minute twelve apart and we realized this was gonna be a nail-biter. Jackson Reynolds (1g,1a) interrupted the uprising but, LeClaire with help from Jackson Reid nailed the only man-up goal of the day.
Seemingly unimpressed with the Foulds one quarter hat trick, LeClaire matched the feet to close the half with OSU trailing, 7-6.
At 13:18, Jack Myers (3g) got it back where it started, all even. Penn State would then go on a four-goal frenzy. Grant Haus (1g), Malone with his 7th on the campaign, Mac O’Keefe (3g), and another from Malone made it 11-7. Jackson Reid and Griffin Hughes (2g,1) threw water on the smoldering fire and the warriors went to the final stanza to decide a contest that was still very much up in the air.
:26 in and Malone continued to have the hot hand and four minutes later, Foulds put it back to a four-goal uphill OSU battle, 13-9.
If you haven’t learned anything about lacrosse, rule 1, never rule a team out and that came to the forefront. Johnny Wiseman (1g,1a), Griffin Hughes, and Jack Myers got the PSU fans nervous. It was now a one-goal game with 7:00 to play. Malone set up O’Keefe for his second with Myers getting his hat trick with 3:55 to go.
O’Keefe, unimpressed with the Myers heroics, picked up his own hat trick to salt away the much-needed Penn State victory.
Penn State Head Coach, Jeff Tambroni commented on the game and the preparation leading up to it. “I do believe we’re trending in the right direction,” Tambroni said prior to the game against Ohio State. “It’s been fun to watch our guys — they’ve challenged each other as teammates, and leaders have challenged our team as peers. It’s been a very combative, competitive, and productive week of practice.”
Inside the Game
The three tallies give Mac O’Keefe 197 goals for his career, putting him in fifth place all-time in the NCAA. He is now just two away from Connor Fields. The seven points were a career-high for TJ Malone. Gerard Arceri picked you 13 face-off wins to boost his career number to 813. Shots on Goal favored Penn State, 43-35. As was the case with Ground Balls, 36-31 while OSU had the edge from the “X”, 18 to 13.