While most of their classmates were partying the week away, the members of the Harvard men’s lacrosse team closed out their spring break in something less than a party mood.
The Crimson (4-2) played two away games over spring break, winning the first against Quinnipiac on March 29 but settling for a hard loss against Denver Saturday.
DENVER 9, HARVARD 8
DENVER, Colo.—After a hard game played in hot weather and high altitude, Harvard was on the verge of a one-goal win only to see victory evaporate in the final seconds of play as the Pioneers (5-2) snatched a 9-8 win at Peter Barton Stadium.
“The game was basically over,” said junior midfielder Jake Samuelson. “The last minute seemed almost like a blur to me. We were ready to celebrate that game.”
With the score 8-7 and less than a minute remaining in the fourth period, a Crimson win seemed inevitable.
But with only 35 seconds left, Denver won the face-off and charged the net, where Andrew McCuiston scored his first goal of the year to tie the game.
The Pioneeers won the ensuing face-off and raced downfield where Brandon Barcus was able to put away the winning shot with just 24 seconds remaining.
“We got a couple of bad bounces and they came and completed their game,” Samuelson said. “The last two shots they threw in were just bullets. It was a tough break.”
Harvard had grabbed the momentum early in the first period with a three-goal streak. Sophomore midfielder Carle Stenmark, playing against doctors orders because of a torn ACL, got the first goal of the game during a man-up advantage for the Crimson, catching a pass from freshman attackman Zach Widbin to score his first of two goals.
Junior attackman Sean Kane then sent a pass across the goal to sophomore midfielder Evan Calvert who found the net to spot Harvard a 2-0 lead.
Samuelson finished out the streak when he rushed in from the left side to score with a bounced-in shot.
The Pioneers scored two goals late in the period to get on the board. But Harvard was not really jarred until a questionable call from the referees disallowed the Crimson’s next goal.
Freshman attackman Brooks Scholl shot from close in front but after the play the Pioneer goalie claimed Scholl had crossed the crease. The goal was deemed invalid.
“That’s something that we would like to do: blame a game on the referees,” Samuelson said. “These are referees that referee all Denver’s games and we will never see these referees again and they don’t really care, but you can’t blame the referees.”