ROUND ROCK, Texas – They won the Division I title back in 2019 and South Carolina will get an opportunity to defend that crown after the Gamecocks defeated Brigham Young, 11-9, in the second semifinal at the 2022 MCLA National Championships presented by New Balance.
South Carolina (16-3) will meet Georgia Tech in Saturday’s championship game in a rematch of the SELC championship game from April 24 won by the Gamecocks, 17-15.
After yielding the first goal to BYU (17-3), South Carolina buried three straight, the last two by Ryan Vermeulen. The two teams traded goals to end the first quarter with the Gamecocks leading, 4-2.
Sam Weis opened the second quarter with his second of the game to push the lead to 5-2. BYU’s Alton Taylor scored with 10 minutes left, but South Carolina faceoff man Will Frith won the ensuing draw and raced down the field for a goal just five seconds later to five the Gamecocks a 6-3 edge.
The Cougars would finish the quarter with goals from Thomas Miles and Jake Halversen to cut the margin to 8-7 at the half.
Carolina snatched those two goals back in the first 5:10 of the third to take an 8-5 advantage. Again BYU answered, with two of their own, including a spinning goal by Andrew Freedman with 22 seconds left in the quarter, to again cut the Gamecocks edge to 8-7.
Weis completed his hat trick 58 seconds into the fourth, which was matched when BYU defenseman Taylor Mason sprinted down the field and buried a shot low, cutting the margin to 9-8 with nine minutes left.
Goals by Corbett Glick and Timothy Cegielski two minutes apart put the capper on the game for the Gamecocks. The Cougars scored with 2:30 left to cut the lead to 11-9, but could get no closer.
Weis’ hat trick led the way for the Gamecocks while Alex Petrush made 11 saves in the victory.
Taylor posted a hat trick for BYU while Mason Moon turned way 10 shots.