Henry Burchenal ’12 scored two goals and tallied a team-high four assists in Hamilton College’s 8-7 win over Utica College in a non-league game at Hamilton’s Steuben Field on March 13.
The game marked the first lacrosse event at Steuben Field since an artificial grass surface was installed in summer 2009. The Continentals (1-0 overall) opened their season with a win for the sixth straight year, while the Pioneers lost their second straight game to open 2010. Hamilton has won 10 of the 11 meetings all-time against Utica.
Burchenal also picked up six ground balls for the Continentals. Paul Armideo ’13 added two goals for Hamilton in his first collegiate action. Luke Sadoff ‘12 was credited with two assists. Alex Duncan ’10 picked up a team-high nine ground balls, and won 4 of 5 faceoffs.
The visitors from Utica opened the scoring just 55 seconds into the first quarter. With 7:26 left in the first, Armideo scored his first goal of the afternoon off an assist from Burchenal to tie the score. The duo of Armideo and Burchenal capitalized again just 1:25 later when Armideo scored his second goal during an extra-man opportunity, after one of the Pioneers was called for cross-checking.
Utica tied the score 3:52 into the second quarter. The Pioneers sent a shot into the back of the net for a 3-2 advantage a little more than a minute later. With 6:21 left before the half, the Pioneers scored again to stretch their lead to two. Hamilton scored the next four goals -- a spurt that spanned the second and third quarters -- to take the lead for good. Burchenal tallied both of his goals and Sadoff recorded both of his assists during the run.
At the 4:17 mark, Burchenal scored his first goal off an assist from Stephen Lefebvre ’11. Burchenal added another with just 36 seconds left in the half off a pass from Sadoff. Franke Holiber ’10 fired a shot past the Utica goalie to make the score 5-4 early in the third. Corbin Brown ’11 scored an unassisted goal -- the first goal of his career -- with 8:51 remaining to put Hamilton up by two. Utica added a goal to pull within 6-5 with 3:48 left in the third.
2009 Liberty League rookie of the year, Jon Leanos ‘12, scored 43 seconds into the final quarter to put the Continentals up by two again. The Continentals reached their largest lead of the game at 8-5 as McCullough Shriver ’13 scored his first goal as a Continental with 10:52 left. The Pioneers did not go away quietly. They capitalized on an extra-man opportunity to make the score 8-6, and with just 1:03 left, Utica scored another extra-man goal to cut its deficit to one.
The Pioneers won the ensuing faceoff and fired a shot on goal with 29 seconds remaining, but Max Vaickus ‘12 was there to make the save. Vaickus finished with five saves for Hamilton. The Pioneers came up with the loose ball and called a timeout with 24 seconds left. However, Utica didn't get another shot off, as a pass from behind the goal sailed high towards midfield as time ran out.
The Continentals held a 35-17 advantage in shots, and a 45-38 edge in ground balls. Hamilton travels to Duke University in Durham, N.C., to play another non-league game against Sewanee on Wednesday, March 17.