The Hobart College lacrosse team was tied with host Siena College after three quarters, but the Statesmen outscored the Saints 6-2 in the final frame to take a 12-8 victory. Hobart won its season opener behind senior Taylor Vanderbeek‘s hat trick as well as a four-point effort from senior Zach Reed.
All three of Vanderbeek’s goals came in the second half, including two in the pivotal fourth quarter. Reed had two goals and two assists. Senior Brendan Saylor and junior Matt Opsahl each finished the game with two goals and an assist. Hobart outshot Siena 40-36, had more ground balls (29-23), and committed fewer turnovers (12-17). Sophomore defenseman Grant Soucy had a team-high three caused turnovers while sophomore goalie Jackson Brown posted a career-high 13 saves in just his second collegiate start and third appearance overall.
Siena (0-2) was led by Nate Barry’s three-goal, one-assist performance. Connor Prunty (3a) and Jordan Barlow (1g,2a) each chipped in three points. Casey Dowd took all 24 faceoffs for the Saints, winning 15 and collecting a game-high nine ground balls.
Played inside the Adirondack Sports Complex due to the frigid temperatures gripping the Eastern United States, the Saints won the opening faceoff and took the first shot, but Brown made the stop giving the ball over to the Statesmen offense. Hobart came out firing, scoring three times in 76 seconds. Opsahl put the Statesmen on the board at 12:53. Twenty-four seconds later, he assisted on Reed’s first goal and less than a minute after that sophomore Greg Sheetz scored off a feed from classmate Max Romm.
Siena finally broke through the Hobart defense with 8:05 remaining in the first on Barry’s second goal of the year. Barlow made it 3-2 five minutes later and that’s how it stayed through the end of the first quarter.
The teams traded goals early in the second quarter, with Saylor tallying for the Statesmen, 20 seconds ahead of Richie Hurley. The rest of the stanza was quiet offensively, sending Hobart into halftime with a 4-3 lead.
The Saints tied the game with the first goal of the second half, but Opsahl and Vanderbeek scored in succession for a 6-4 Statesmen lead. Siena made it 6-5 with an extra-man goal and tied the game with the final tally of the third quarter.
Hobart started the fourth quarter with another three-goal burst. Reed set up Vanderbeek to start the run. Thirty-three seconds later, senior Alex Love scored an unassisted goal to make it 8-6. It was his 108th career goal, one shy of Daryl Veltman’s career total which is the standard for Division I Statesmen. Love assisted on Reed’s second strike at 11:54 to give Hobart a three-goal edge.
Hurley interrupted the run, but the Statesmen kept rolling, scoring three more goals to put the game away. Romm netted his first goal of the year at 4:58 followed by extra-man goals by Vanderbeek and Saylor for a 12-7 lead with just 1:01 remaining.
Barry scored his third goal of the game on the extra-man with just 24 ticks remaining to close out the scoring.
Tommy Cordts got the start in goal for Siena, making nine saves on 13 shots in the first half. Nick Capalbo played the second half, turning away five of the 13 shots he saw.
Hobart is scheduled to make its Boswell Field debut against Cornell at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 21. It will be the 134th meeting between the New York State rivals.