EUGENE, Ore. – Oregon (11-3, 6-1 PNCLL) defeated Oregon State (9-4, 6-1 PNCLL), 12-10, in an exciting Civil War on Saturday at West Linn High School to win the Pacific Northwest Collegiate Lacrosse League (PNCLL) regular season title.
Both teams knew a win on Saturday meant taking the No. 1 seed in next weekend’s PNCLL tournament, and an opening round game versus PNCLL No. 4 seed Washington. After losing to Washington last weekend, the Ducks had a rematch on their minds.
Oregon State had upset on their minds, coming out strong and taking a 3-0 lead in a first quarter that was dominated by the Beavers.
The Ducks countered in the second quarter, led by junior attackman Michael Marcott. Oregon’s high-powered offense took control by scoring eight unanswered goals to start the second quarter. Oregon State added one goal before the half, but the Ducks led 8-4 at the break.
“We have 100 percent confidence in our offense,” said Marcott. “We know sometimes it takes us a second to get into it, but the key for us was not to get too rattled by what they were doing, and to keep focusing on what we were doing, and it really paid off. We stuck to our bread and butter, and it worked.”
Marcott and coach Jon Bongiorno challenged the rest of the Ducks at the half to not take their foot off the gas, reiterating that Oregon State is a top 15 team. If Oregon let up, the Beavers would capitalize.
“It was settling down – you know we talk about it – calm is contagious,” said Bongiorno. “We calmed down, and started taking care of the ball a little bit more and focusing, and we were able to get through it. That’s really the swing that made the big difference.”
Oregon did not let up in the third quarter, outscoring Oregon State 4-2. With 15 minutes remaining in the game, the Ducks led 12-6.
The Beavers were not ready to hand the Ducks the PNCLL title without a fight. Oregon State scored two goals to bring the score to 12-8 with seven minutes remaining in the game.
Following an illegal body check penalty on Oregon, which resulted in the Ducks playing man-down for two minutes, the Beavers quickly added two more goals, bringing the score to 12-10 with three minutes left in the game.
Junior midfielder Nick Cantoni won the faceoff following an Oregon State goal, which allowed the Ducks to kill the penalty, and run out the clock to hold on for the win.
“We went man-down and they were able to get some momentum, but we just stayed calm – like we were most of the game – and just played fundamental defense,” said sophomore defenseman Matt Peter.
Next up for the Ducks is the a rematch with Washington in the conference tournament. The Huskies were the only team in the PNCLL to beat Oregon this year.
“We didn’t play very good (against Washington), and they obviously did – credit them. It’s going to be awesome to get some revenge,” said Peter.
The PNCLL tournament will be hosted by Boise State University this weekend.