Men'S Lacrosse

No. 1 Tigers toppled, Engineers atop Liberty League

The No. 1 RIT Tigers traveled to East Campus Stadium looking to continue their perfect season, while the No. 19 Engineers sought to remain unbeaten in the Liberty League.

The Tigers started the scoring with an early goal while a man up. After a nine-minute stalemate, RIT doubled their lead. Rensselaer rallied back in the last two minutes of the opening quarter, tying it up with goals just 40 seconds apart from Connor Glosner ’22 and Trey Berry ’25.

RIT regained the lead with the first goal of the second quarter, but RPI responded minutes later. Cooper Urban ’22 received a pass from behind the net 10 yards from goal. Dancing around his defenseman, Urban drew in the RIT defense to free up Rhys Zoldi ’22. Zoldi faked a shot, forcing a Tiger to retreat a few yards and hesitate. The extra space and time allowed him to bounce a shot into the top right corner. The Tigers scored within a minute and a half to put them in front again, but a 15-yard snipe from Anthony Mazzella ’23 erased the lead within 40 seconds. A goal from Urban and two from Trey Froehlich ’22 propelled the Engineers into the lead 7‒4 heading into halftime.

The Tigers came out of the locker room fired up, pelting RPI goaltender Joseph Perry ’25 with shots. Despite making several fantastic saves, Perry could not stop RIT from going on a five-goal run in the third quarter. Luke Murphy ’23 brought the deficit back to one when he scored with a minute remaining in the quarter, turning the tide in the Engineers’ favor heading into the final frame.

Angelo Venuto ’24 won the faceoff draw to begin the fourth quarter and immediately drove toward the RIT net. The Tiger defense contracted to close down his shooting lanes, leaving Cooper Urban alone in front of goal. Urban received Venuto’s pass and buried a low shot past the RIT goaltender to tie it back up seven seconds in.

Two RIT goals followed, with a third goal from Urban between them, to put the Tigers up 11‒10. Less than three minutes after the second RIT goal of the quarter, Murphy scored his second goal of the game—the last time the teams would be tied. With five minutes remaining, Zoldi bounced a shot into the top left corner to put RPI in front. Less than a minute later, Perry made a terrific save to deny the Tigers and quickly cleared the ball to Jon Matkin ’22. Matkin bolted downfield, drawing defensemen out of position as he advanced towards the net before passing to Urban to his right. The Tiger defense shifted over to close Urban down, and the Engineer instantly tossed the pass to Froehlich on the opposite side. Froehlich collected the pass and rifled a shot into the top right corner to put the game out of RIT’s reach.

The Tigers desperately tried to claw their way back, scoring with 2:46 left to put the pressure on the RPI defense. The Engineers endured for the remainder of the game as it finished 13‒12, dealing RIT a crushing blow for their first loss of the season. The Engineers’ season record increases to 9‒1. They now sit at the top of the Liberty League at a perfect 3‒0. Click here for the box score.

ANTHONY MAZZELLA '23 AND LUKE MURPHY '23 CELEBRATE after combining for the Engineers' fourth goal. Theo Olinkiewicz/The Polytechnic