Navy rolls, earns date with Army for Patriot title

Navy 9 Lehigh 2

April 29, 2006|By FROM STAFF REPORTS

The sixth-ranked Navy lacrosse team used a suffocating defense and a balanced offense, cruising to a 9-2 victory over host and Lehigh in the Patriot League tournament semifinals.

Navy (10-3) will face No. 18 Army (8-5) today at noon in the final. Army defeated top-seeded Colgate, 10-8, in yesterday's other semifinal.

Jon Birsner had a goal and three assists and became just the fourth player in Navy history, and the fifth in league history, to surpass 100 career assists. Birsner earned his 100th career assist on Chris Barnard's goal in the fourth quarter, then added one later to finish the game with 101.

Jordan DiNola, Brendan Teague and Andrew Dow led a Mids defense that held the Mountain Hawks (8-7) without a shot for the first 20:04 of the second half and just 19 shots for the game.

"The defense was incredible tonight," Birsner said. "As a team, we hadn't really played a great second half all year, and I thought we did tonight. The defense really set the tone in the third quarter."

Lehigh 1 0 0 1 - 2

Navy 3 1 2 3 - 9

Goals: L-King, Zurfluh; N-Dingman 3, Mirabito 2, Birsner, Looney, Hackett, Barnard. Assists: N-Birsner 3, Dingman, Mirabito, Nechanicky. Saves: L- Spirko 5, Park; N-Russell 6, Finnegan 1. A: 231.

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