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Bulldogs Come Back For 7-5 Win

Colin Flaherty  (photo by Don Clark, Yale Sports Publicity)
Colin Flaherty (photo by Don Clark, Yale Sports Publicity)

Flaherty Gets 3 in Win over Green


NEW  HAVEN, Conn. - The Yale men's lacrosse team used three straight goals from Colin Flaherty to erase a fourth-quarter deficit and give the No. 16 Bulldogs their third straight win, a 7-5 decision against Dartmouth in front of a packed house on Senior Day at Reese Stadium.


Down 5-4 heading into the fourth period, the Bulldogs knew a loss could shatter any hope of another postseason run. After three periods of offensive struggles, the Blue rose to the occasion. The defense played with their hair on fire, holding the Big Green scoreless in a frenzied attack that resulted in 11 turnovers, including two that directly led to Bulldog scores. The offense simply found Flaherty.


The sophomore attacker came through in the clutch, putting on a clinic that the Dartmouth defense will not likely soon forget. He struck first with 11:54 left. Conrad Oberbeck found Flaherty open on the elbow, pausing for a roaming defender to vacate his view of the goal, he fired for the five hole, slipping it past the Big Green goalie to tie it up at five. Ten minutes later, Flaherty got the best of two defenders, shucking and jiving his way past the enemy to finish alone on the crease; the goalie didn't stand a chance.


With 47 seconds remaining, Flaherty shut the door for good.


"Dartmouth covered me with two long sticks.  I led one defenseman one way and ran through the middle - splitting the defense.  Coach [Graham] Niemi was yelling at me to hit the empty net, so that's what I did.  It was nice to really ice the game by going up by two."


The game began how it was supposed to. Yale jumped out to a 2-0 lead, Brandon Mangan opened the scoring with his only goal of the day, then dished to Mark Glicini, open in front of the net, for the sequel. A Dartmouth goal halved the lead, but Sean Shakespeare found a wide open Kirby Zdrill to put Yale back up by two. The Blue would not score again for the next 30 minutes, but their defense kept it close.


The Bulldog defense played their best game of the season. The combined efforts of captain Michael McCormack, Peter Johnson, Michael Quinn, Jimmy Craft and the other Eli defensemen kept the Blue alive during the second and third period scoreless streak. The squad held the Big Green to just 17 shots on the day (Yale took 44), including a measly two fourth-period attempts with the game on the line.


"Our goal is to let in less than 7 or 8 goals, so we definitely accomplished that. I thought we played great and held their offense," said Johnson, one of seven Yale seniors honored before today's game. "To win on senior day feels great. It's the last Saturday I'll be out here, which is nostalgic, and it's always good to win in Reese Stadium."


Today's victory moves the senior class into sole possession of the fifth most wins by a class in the 131 year history of Yale lacrosse.


Eric Natale stopped six shots while Dylan Levings won nine of 16 face-offs.


The Bulldogs next take the field this Friday at Reese Stadium in an Ivy League matchup against Brown at 7 pm.


Filed by Wes Moyer '12, Yale Sports Publicity Intern

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