|Collin Purdy||Shayne Fallon|
|Brendan McGinn||Gordon Paul|
Defending Landmark Conference champion Elizabethtown dealt The University of Scranton men's lacrosse team its first loss in conference play this spring on Thursday as the Blue Jays stifled the Royals in a 9-3 victory at Weiss Field.
With the win, Elizabethtown lifted its record to 8-6 on the year while dropping Scranton to 9-7 overall. The two teams are part of a three-way tie for first place in the Landmark Conference standings heading into the final games of the regular season as the Royals, Blue Jays, and Susquehanna are all 4-1 in conference play with one game remaining.
Scranton plays at Moravian next Saturday while Elizabethtown hosts Susquehanna the same day. The Royals need to a win and a Susquehanna win to claim the top seed and home field advantage throughout the postseason tournament while a Scranton win and an Elizabethtown win would give the Royals the number two seed and a home semifinal game.
On Thursday, Elizabethtown build a 3-1 lead in the first quarter and scored the only goal of the second period to hold a 4-1 advantage at halftime.
The Blue Jays made it a 5-1 game with another marker a minute and a half into the third quarter, but a pair of goals separated by just 26 seconds brought Scranton to within two at 5-3 with 11 minutes left in the stanza.
Elizabethtown pushed its lead to three goals by tallying 1:47 before the third quarter horn sounded and put the game away with three goals in the final seven minutes of the fourth frame.
Junior Connor Kirkwood (Millburn, N.J./St Peter's Prep), sophomore Daniel Mallay (South Hempstead, N.Y./South Side), and junior Quinn Killeen (Berkeley Heights, N.J./New Providence) scored for the Royals, who had their lowest offensive output since a 14-3 loss at RIT on March 5, 2017.
Sophomore Shayne Fallon (West Deptford, N.J./West Deptford) made 14 saves on the evening to keep the Royals in the contest while sophomore Collin Purdy (Hillsborough, N.J./Hillsborough) had another strong game on face-offs, winning 10 of the game's 16 draws and scooping up a game-high eight groundballs.
Elizabethtown finished the evening with a 37-30 advantage in shots while Scranton held a 32-26 edge in groundballs. The Royals were guilty of 23 turnovers in the game versus 16 for the Blue Jays.
Both teams were efficient in their clearing attempts with Elizabethtown converting on 21-of-22 clears and the hosts going 14-for-16.
Scranton will close out the regular season next Saturday, April 27, with a Landmark Conference matchup against Moravian starting at 1 p.m. in Bethlehem, Pa.