St. Thomas Moves Past San Marcos
ROUND ROCK, Texas – For the 10th time in Division II history, St. Thomas will be heading to the championship game at the 2023 MCLA National Championships presented by New Balance after the Tommies defeated Cal State San Marcos, 11-4, on Thursday afternoon.
St. Thomas (14-2) outscored Cal State San Marcos (16-2), 9-2, over the final 45 minutes of action to coast to the victory.
The Tommies will meet Upper Midwest Lacrosse Conference rival Dayton at 4 p.m. on Friday. Note the date change, as the tournament is being moved up to avoid a massive storm system expected to dump up to six inches of rain in the area.
The game started out a little slowly, with the defenses and goalies making an early statement, leading to a tie at twos after the opening quarter. St. Thomas would own the second quarter, however.
Garett Hoch opened the scoring off a feed from Cam Gelling before Isaac Edwards drove to the net to give the Tommies a 4-2 lead. Ryan Solz bounced one in 4:34 before the end of the half and two minutes later, it was Samuel Zumpfer who let one rip off a dish from Hoch.
Each goal was scored by a different St. Thomas player in the first half, which ended 6-2 in favor the Tommies.
Cal State San Marcos (16-2) pulled one back to start the third quarter on a Jakob Hudson high ripper off a dish from Kobe Brown. The Tommies answered with three consecutive goals, including the second for both Hoch and Solz, to push the lead to 9-3.
Jason Thibeault loaded up and unleashed a rocket with 33 seconds left in the third to cut the lead to 9-4 after three. But that would be it for the Cougars’ scoring for the afternoon.
St. Thomas scored the only two goals of the fourth quarter, with Jack Stone scoring an empty-netter for his hat trick at 1:52 to seal the game.
Edwards joined Hoch and Stolz with two goals while Gunner Arens was excellent in net, making 11 saves before giving way to Jordan Draxten late in the fourth.
Thibeault’s two goals led the way for the Cougars. Easton Bates turned away seven shots in the loss.
St. Thomas is 6-3 in championship games, with its last title coming in 2019 against Dayton.