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No. 2 men’s lacrosse suffers second loss of season at No. 11 Yale

<h5>Before the game, the Tigers had fallen only to No. 1 Maryland.</h5>
<h6>Courtesy of <a href="https://twitter.com/TigerLacrosse/status/1508171967731482631?s=20&amp;t=YE8Iz05AGco8syCIV-hzqg" target="_self">@TigerLacrosse/Twitter</a>.</h6>
Before the game, the Tigers had fallen only to No. 1 Maryland.
Courtesy of @TigerLacrosse/Twitter.

On Saturday, March 26, the No. 2 men’s lacrosse team (5–2 overall, 1–1 Ivy League) gave the No. 11 Yale Bulldogs (4–2, 1–1) everything they could handle in a thrilling battle at Reese Field in New Haven, but ultimately fell 14–12.

Princeton started the game with junior midfield player Jake Stevens scoring a goal within the first 30 seconds of play. The Tigers’ energy increased from there as they worked towards another goal, scored by junior attacker Alex Slusher. They continued their strong start for the rest of the opening period, ending the first quarter with four goals. However, the Bulldogs weren’t far behind as they ended the quarter with two goals. 

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The Tigers struggled in the second quarter, scoring only one goal as the Bulldogs began to dominate and managed to add five goals to their tally. The half ended with Yale leading Princeton 7–5. Despite the lead change, Princeton wasn’t willing to back down.

The Tigers knew they needed to make up for their unusually silent second quarter. They came out strong in the third quarter, outscoring Yale 5–4. However, the run wasn’t enough as the Tigers still trailed the Bulldogs by the end of the quarter, 11–10.

The fourth quarter was the most intense: the game was truly anyone’s to claim as junior midfield player Alexander Vardaro scored to tie the game at 11 all. The teams challenged one another on both offense and defense and never allowed each other to grow comfortable leads. 

Up until the last two minutes of play, it seemed as though the Tigers could win or, at the very least, push the game into overtime, like they did the week prior when facing off against Penn. However, the Bulldogs scored a late goal, extending their lead to two and played relentlessly on defense, leaving no room for the Tigers to catch up. The loss was just the second of the season for the Tigers, whose previous defeat came against No. 1 Maryland, 15–10.

The Tigers will face the Brown Bears in another League match on Saturday, April 2 at Stevenson-Pincince Field in Providence, RI. 

Le'Naya Wilkerson is a staff writer for the sports section at the ‘Prince.’ She can be reached via email at lw7842@princeton.edu.

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