Patriot League Tournament MVP Tommy Phelan
April 26, 2009
Lewisburg, Pa.- Third-seeded Navy won its fifth Patriot League Tournament Championship title in six years with a 9-8 victory over top-seeded Bucknell on Sunday with at Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium. The Midshipmen earned the Patriot League's automatic bid to the 2009 NCAA Tournament with the victory, marking the sixth straight season that Navy has reached the tournament.
After trailing 5-4 at halftime, Navy (11-4) built a 7-5 lead by scoring first three goals of the second half. In the process, the Mids held the Bison without a goal for a stretch of 24:23. Bucknell responded with goals by Tim Brandau and Mike Danylyshyn to tie the contest 6:52 remaining.
Navy answered back with two straight goals. Fourteen seconds after a tripping penalty against the Bison, Navy's Evan Sullivan rifled a shot past Patriot League Goalkeeper of the Year Nick Sciubba. The Mids added to their lead nine seconds later off the face-off, when the Bison surrendered an own goal.
Bucknell did not go quietly, as junior Austin Winter found senior Joe Mele near the net for a goal to pull the Bison within one with 1:10 left in the contest. After the teams exchanged possessions, Bucknell regained control of the ball with 10 seconds left in the game. The Bison launched the ball down the field, unable to get a shot off. The ball went out of bounds, giving Navy possession with five seconds remaining and allowing the Mids to run out the clock.
Senior goalkeeper Tommy Phelan made 10 saves to register his fifth win in six games. Phelan, who made 19 saves and allowed 16 goals in 129:14 of play, was named Patriot League Tournament Most Valuable Player.
Brendan Connors notched three goals and an assist to lead Navy offensively against the Bison. Connors was the only Midshipman to score multiple goals, as six different Mids recorded a goal.
Bucknell was paced by Brandau and Winter. Brandau recorded three goals, while Winter provided the Bison with two goals and three assists. Sciubba made 10 saves in defeat.
The 2009 NCAA Division I Men's Lacrosse Championship selection bracket will be announced live on ESPNU and ESPNEWS on Sunday, May 3. The 16-team bracket will be revealed from 9 to 10 p.m. Eastern time on ESPNU and 10-10:30 p.m. on ESPNEWS.
The first round of the NCAA Tournament will take place May 9 or 10 on campus sites. The quarterfinals will be held May 16 and 17 at Navy and Hofstra. The semifinals and finals will be contested at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass. May 23 and 25.
Results and box scores for this weekend's competition can be found on the Patriot League site on the main page as well as on the Men's Lacrosse Championship Page which can be accessed by clicking here.
2009 Patriot League Tournament Most Valuable Player
Tommy Phelan, Navy
2009 Patriot League All-Tournament Team
Jason Peyer, Army
Matt Poulos, Army
Tim Brandau, Bucknell
Billy Haire, Bucknell
Austin Winter, Bucknell
Brandon Corp, Colgate
Mike Crown, Colgate
Brendan Connors, Navy
Joe Lennon, Navy
Geoff Leone, Navy
Andy Tormey, Navy
2009 Patriot League Men's Lacrosse Tournament Results
Friday, April 24
Semifinal 1: No. 1 Bucknell 10, No. 4 Army 8
Semifinal 2: No. 3 Navy 9, No. 2 Colgate 8 (3OT)
Sunday, April 26
Championship Game: No. 3 Navy 9, No. 1 Bucknell 8