ALBION, Mich. – The men's lacrosse team (11-3, 6-0) won the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association regular-season title on the road by beating previously- unbeaten Albion (10-5, 5-1), 10-8, Saturday afternoon. The two teams entered the contest with perfect 5-0 records in conference play.
Adrian entered the final quarter trailing, 8-7, but came from behind and scored the game's only three goals of the final quarter to win the title.
The Bulldogs preserved their legacy of winning every conference matchup to date that includes their years in the Midwest Lacrosse Conference.
The see-saw event saw the Brits lead after the first quarter, 5-3, only to have the Bulldogs regain the lead at the half 6-5. After Albion retook the lead after the third quarter, Adrian answered again- this time for the final time.
The two halves played out almost identically. The Bulldogs trailed after the first and third quarters, but scored three goals in the following second and fourth quarters to retake the lead.
The teams traded the lead six times in the contest, three in the first quarter and once each in the remaining quarters.
If this is to be a preview of the MIAA tournament, two of the league's premier players will be showcased in Albion's Tim Urso and Adrian's Cody Kilcoyne who together accounted for half of the game's scoring.
Tom Thielman's 17th goal of the season tied the game at 8-8 about three minutes into the fourth quarter. Then, the duo of Drake Dailey-Chwalibog and Mitch Burgin combined for the game-winning and insurance goals for the Bulldogs- with the former scoring and the latter assisting.
After the Bulldogs went down, 1-0, Kilcoyne scored twice to give Adrian a 2-1 lead. John Hudzinski scored from Kilcoyne to put Adrian up 3-2, but Urso's third and fourth goals of the game helped the Brits take a 5-3 lead after the first quarter with Albion's last three goals of the quarter coming with the man-up.
Adrian would net three second-quarter goals to take a 6-5 lead at the half.
Kilcoyne's 42nd goal of the season brought Adrian within a goal about three minutes into the second. Brandon MacDonald then tied the game at 5-5, before A.J. Smith would give Adrian a 6-5 lead with almost eight minutes left in the half.
Albion would outscore Adrian, 3-1, in the third quarter and own an 8-7 lead after three with Hudzinski netting the lone Adrian goal- his second of the contest.
Kevin Lerg would register four saves in the win that saw Adrian edge Albion in shots (37-24), groundballs (29-24), and faceoffs (13-9).
The men's lacrosse team will now advance and host the first round (semifinals) of the MIAA tournament Thursday, May 2nd. The Bulldogs will face Hope College (fourth seed) at 4 p.m.
The semifinal winners will play Saturday, May 4th for the MIAA tournamnet title.