HENRIETTA, N.Y. (RIT Athletics) — Senior face-off specialist Nick Montemorano was named tournament Most Outstanding Player, winning 14-of-19 draws, scooping up 11 ground balls and tallying two goals and an assist, as the No. 1 RIT (10-0) men’s lacrosse team won its ninth-straight Liberty League title with a 19-6 win over No. 2 St. Lawrence University (8-3) in the championship game Saturday afternoon.
Its the Tigers’ 11th-straight league championship dating back to RIT’s days in the Empire 8.
Shots were 48-21 in favor of RIT, winning the ground ball battle 53-32. The Tigers won 23-of-29 face-offs, went 1-for-1 on man-up, and cleared the ball on 19-of-20 attempts.
Senior attackman Dawson Tait led RIT with four goals and five points. Larson Sundown finished with two goals and two assists, while Quinn Commandant tallied three goals. Senior Ryan Barnable had a goal and an assist and junior John Mozrall tallied a goal and added two assists. Montemorano and Luke Pilcher each scored two goals.
Senior goalie Walker Hare improved 10-0 in net for RIT, making six saves. Montemorano led the Tigers with 11 ground balls, and Taylor Jensen, Caleb Commandant, and Conor Bolin each caused two turnovers.
Chris Jordan led St. Lawrence with two goals, while Mark Mahoney finished with two assists. William Helm took the loss in net for the Saints, making eight saves.
RIT took a 3-0 lead early in the first quarter on goals from Sundown, Tait and Commandant. Jordan broke the RIT run with his goal with 10:12 to play, cutting the Tigers lead to 3-1. After a Montemorano goal made it 4-1, the Saints scored two straight, cutting the RIT lead to 4-3 on Jordan’s second goal of the quarter.
Junior Matt Wiechers made it 5-3 RIT on his goal off an assist from Mozrall, but Jack Hennessey cut the RIT lead to 5-4 on his. Goals from Tait and Montemorano late in the quarter gave the Tigers a 7-4 lead after 15 minutes of play.
Ben Hutchinson scored with 11:58 to play in the second quarter to make it 7-5 RIT, but Barnable scored off an assist from Sundown, and Mozrall tallied an unassisted goal with two minutes remaining in the half to give the Tigers a 9-5 halftime lead.
RIT broke the game open in the third, outscoring the Saints 7-0 in the quarter. Commandant and Tait each scored twice in the quarter, Seth Grottenthaler, Sundown, and Ryan Agedal also scored.
Luke Pilcher scored twice, and Ryan Rosenblum tallied his 15th goal of the season in the fourth quarter to increase the RIT lead to 19-5. RIT went on a 12-0 goal run, holding the Saints scoreless for a little over 34 minutes until Judge Murphy scored for the Saints with 7:12 to play.
RIT wins its ninth straight Liberty League title and 11th straight league championship dating back to RIT’s days in the Empire 8. The Tigers earn the automatic qualifier into the NCAA Division III Tournament for 11th straight season and 22nd overall.
RIT will learn who it faces in the NCAA Division III Men’s Lacrosse Championship on Sunday, May 9 at 9 p.m.