SAN DIEGO – Joe Balestrieri’s fourth goal of the game with 4:48 left in the fourth quarter proved to be the difference in Grand Canyon’s 10-9 victory over Arizona State in the Southwestern Lacrosse Conference Division I championship game.
With the win, the Lopes earn an automatic qualifying berth to the 2017 MCLA National Championships powered by Under Armour, which runs from May 8-13 in Orange County, Calif.
This is the fourth visit to the D-I nationals for Grand Canyon, which includes a national title in 2015.
The Lopes took a 4-1 lead after one quarter of action against the Sun Devils in a game being played at La Costa Canyon High School. ASU answered in the second quarter to narrow the gap to 5-4 at halftime.
The Sun Devils tied the game early in the third quarter and the contest was still tied at nines with 5:45 remaining, setting the stage for Balestrieri.
Grand Canyon will find out its seed and first round opponent when the MCLA Division I National Championship bracket is unveiled on Sunday on MCLA.us.
2017 Southwestern Lacrosse Conference Tournament
Division I - (Bracket)
Saturday, April 22 – First Round
#2N UC Santa Barbara d. #3S Arizona, 11-10
Friday, April 28 – Semifinals – La Costa Canyon
#1S Grand Canyon d. #2N UC Santa Barbara, 15-9
#2S Arizona State d. #1N Chapman, 10-9
Sunday, April 30 – Finals – La Costa Canyon
#1S Grand Canyon d. #2S Arizona State, 10-9