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BU fights tough with #8 Albany but falls 15-11

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VESTAL, N.Y.- The Binghamton men's lacrosse team challenged #8/9 Albany Saturday night, but the Great Danes came away with a 15-11 America East decision at the Bearcats Sports Complex. Ben Kocis scored four goals to lead BU in front of a men's lacrosse-record crowd of 780 fans at the Bearcats Sports Complex.

Albany's Lyle Thompson tied the NCAA Division I record for career points, scoring seven Saturday to pull even with Rob Pannell of Cornell, who graduated in 2013. Thompson put up a goal and six assists, giving him 354 career points.

Binghamton tested the America East leader for much of the match Saturday, tying the game on three separate occasions, including a 7-7 score midway through the third period.

Albany scored first, but Emmett O'Hara found the back of the net at the 11:54 mark, making it 1-all. After a Great Dane goal, J.T. Hauck found Kocis for a man-up goal with 3:46 remaining in the first. The visitors closed the quarter with three straight goals.

In the second frame, Albany scored 18 seconds in, but BU shut down the nation's highest-scoring team for the rest of the half. The Bearcats harassed the Great Danes into five turnovers in the quarter and Tanner Cosens made three saves to keep Albany off the board.

Offensively, Kocis carried BU. The freshman scored with 5:25 to go, as Tyler Deluca set him up to cut the deficit to 6-3. Deluca then scored himself a few minutes later. With 1:47 left in the half, Kocis scored his third goal of the night, pulling Binghamton within 6-5 at the break.

Albany scored first in the third period, but Kocis had another answer. Hauck assisted on Kocis' fourth goal with 10:58 showing on the clock. A little over a minute later, Johnny Maher tied the game with a diving effort from the left side. It marked Maher's first goal of the season.

The Bearcats fought back after the visitors scored four times. Senior Paul O'Donnell scored on a wraparound move with 31 seconds left in the third. He opened the fourth quarter with another goal at the 9:08 mark, making it an 11-9 difference. Albany came back with three straight goals, but BU continued to push the Danes, scoring twice. Hauck and Zach Scaduto each posted goals in the late going, before an Albany goal sealed the decision with 1:57 to play.

The teams were close to even statistically, as BU won 17-29 faceoffs and held a 26-24 edge in shots on goal. Albany had 14 turnovers to Binghamton's 12 and the Great Danes collected 31 groundballs to 29 for the home team.

Kocis led BU with a career-high four goals. Hauck recorded a goal and two assists, while O'Donnell had two scores. Deluca added a goal and an assist. Austin Macchi won 9-16 faceoffs, while Dan Mazurek and George Deignan each won four draws. Deignan picked up four groundballs and caused a pair of turnovers. Cosens had a strong effort in net, tallying nine saves, four groundballs, and two caused turnovers.

BU is now 2-2 in the conference. It travels to Canisius for a non-league match on Tuesday, April 14.

(Courtesy: Binghamton Athletics)