The No. 13 Princeton Men’s Lacrosse Team (7-4) traveled to the Ulrich Sports Complex in Bethlehem, Pa. to match up against the Lehigh University Mountain Hawks (6-5) on Tuesday. Lehigh’s defense proved stronger than the Tigers’ third-highest-scoring offense, holding them to just 10 goals — five less than its average entering the game. The win marked Lehigh’s second win in the last three years against Princeton, both of which happened against a nationally-ranked Tigers roster.
Lehigh had the game from the start, scoring five unanswered goals in the first quarter. Princeton netted its first with 57 seconds left in the quarter, with freshman attack Michael Sowers assisting senior attack Gavin McBride.
In the second half, it looked like the Tigers could make a comeback, but the first half’s 9-goal deficit was too difficult to overcome. Their second goal was an unassisted point from junior attack Riley Thompson, which was followed by Princeton scoring five of the six goals that followed. Less than a minute into the fourth, McBride brought the score to 11-8, but this was the closest the Tigers would get to the Mountain Hawks.
Despite the loss, the game was record breaking for some, as Sowers broke Kevin Lowe’s 26-year-old school record for points by a freshman with a one-goal, three-assist night. Sowers started the night tied with Lowe, a current Hall of Famer, but now he has four more points than Lowe with a total of 59. Sowers is also expected to break the record for goals scored by a freshman as he is currently tied with 2010 record holder Mike Chanenchuk at 28.
Princeton is going to have to brush this loss off its shoulders in order to prepare for the last three games of the season. The Tigers will begin play against three Ivy League teams with a game on Saturday at Dartmouth, followed by a home game against Harvard and then a trip up to Cornell. As a result of this loss, the Tigers’ chance for an at-large bid is now at risk, so the team will be looking to guarantee a spot in the Ivy League Men’s Lacrosse Tournament and give themselves a shot to play into May.
Saturday’s game will be at Scully-Fahey Field in Hanover, NH at 12 p.m. EST and will be available to watch on the Ivy League Digital Network.