LEWISBURG, Pa. – Freshman Luke Caracciolo (Centreville, Va.) made 16 saves in his collegiate debut and collected eight ground balls, but the Bryant University men's lacrosse team was held off by Bucknell, 9-6, Sunday afternoon.
Bucknell 9, Bryant 6
Records: Bryant (0-1), Bucknell (1-1)
Location: Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium (Lewisburg, Pa.)
COACH PRESSLER'S COMMENTS
"A bright spot was Luke Caracciolo, who was absolutely outstanding in the goal. In his first career start, he had 16 saves and eight ground balls. I could not be more pleased with Luke. I thought Jack Aigner had a very, very good first half, but when the game was being decided in the second half, we couldn't win a face-off.
"I'm very disappointed in two areas: our clearing game decision-making and inability to take care of the ball on offense. You can't throw the ball away 27 times and expect to beat somebody on the road. It's just not going to happen. I put the blame on us. With the clearing game and on offense, we beat ourselves today."
- Bucknell scored two goals in a span of 37 seconds to turn a 3-3 tie into a 5-3 lead with five minutes to go in the third quarter.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- Bucknell scored first in the opening minute of the first quarter before Balch responded for Bryant with 2:21 to go, tying the game 1-1.
- The Bison scored the first two goals of the second quarter, but goals 44 seconds apart from Balch and O'Rourke knotted the game at 3-3 with 5:08 to play before halftime.
- Bucknell's Will Yorke scored the first four goals of the second half to give Bucknell a 7-3 lead with 12:41 remaining in the game.
- A pair of O'Rourke goals sandwiched around Yorke's fifth goal of the afternoon brought Bryant within 8-5 with 3:22 to play.
- Junior Zach Coffey (West Newbury, Mass.) scored the final Bryant goal of the day with 1:52 remaining before Bucknell scored 43 seconds later for the final 9-6 margin.
- O'Rourke scored three goals and added three ground balls.
- Balch tallied two goals, one assist, two ground balls and one caused turnover.
- Sophomore Austin Kent (Franklin, Mass.) added an assist.
- Redshirt-freshman Jack Aigner (Brighton, Mich.) was 6-for-18 at the face-off X and added a caused turnover.
- Bryant committed 27 turnovers, its highest total in a game since 2009.
- Caracciolo's 16 saves were the most by a Bulldog since James Werner turned away 17 Hobart shots April 15, 2017.
- Balch is the third Bryant freshman in the last two seasons to have a multi-goal debut, joining O'Rourke (3) and Kent (2) last season against Manhattan.
- Bryant drops to 1-6 all-time against Bucknell.
Bryant opens its 2019 home slate next Saturday when the Bulldogs host Ocean State Cup foe Providence. The noon start will be played at the Bulldogs' new home, Beirne Stadium.
Season tickets for the 2019 campaign at Beirne Stadium are available by clicking HERE. Single-game tickets will go on sale Monday.