Published: May 23, 2022
Men’s Lacrosse Advances to National Championships Next Week
The University of Tampa Spartan’s men’s lacrosse team defeated Limestone University Sunday to advance to the NCAA Championship for the first time in the program’s history.
The Spartans will compete in East Hartford, CT, at 4 p.m. on Sunday, May 29, against the opposing number one seed Mercy University.
During the first quarter, the Spartans leading scorer of the season, Colin White ’22, scored first assisted by Owen Miller ’22. Limestone attempted to get something going, before the Spartans forced a turnover, which Harry Kilkowski ’22 turned into a goal.
The Spartans would keep the pressure on the Saints, causing turnovers and defending their net well. As their hard work would pay off twice with two quick goals from Daniel Fitzpatrick ’23 and Matthew Beddow ’23 from a face-off win, the Spartans would put two more goals on the board by Charlie Bolesh ’23 and White, ending the quarter 6-0 Tampa.
Going into the second quarter, graduate student Cole Willard scored a solo goal, becoming the sixth different player to score
Limestone got on the board with 7:11 remaining in the quarter, though 11 seconds later, after Hunter Turner ’23 won a face-off, Kilkowski scored again, followed by a goal from Nick Papa ’24, bringing the score to 8-
Two goals from Willard brought the teams into halftime at 11-1 Tampa.
Beginning the second half, a Saints turnover resulted in a score from Papa, assisted by Kellen Hoke ’23.
Limestone would get past an impressive Blake Ulmner ’23, bringing their score up by one
The Spartans headed into the fourth quarter up by 15, after unassisted goals from Kilkowski, Willard, Bolesh, Luke McAnaney ’22 and Papa.
During the fourth quarter, Limestone began to have some success, and the game would become more heated and physical. The Spartans would find themselves on the wrong side of the penalties through the quarter, leading the Saints to find ways to put the ball in the back of the net.
Two more goals, one from Fitzpatrick and another from Miller, left the game at 19-8 Tampa, and sending the Spartans to the NCAA Championship.
Ulmner’s 14 saves put him over 400 career saves; Willard recorded a season high in goals with four Sunday; Beddow recorded his 13th multiple caused turnover game this season; and the Spartans would have nine different scorers.
The Spartans win put them at the most wins in a season in program history with 20 wins.
For more information, check out www.tampaspartans.com/sports/mlax.