The road to the playoffs for John Carroll University’s men’s lacrosse team has been a bumpy one this season.
With a key victory over Bowling Green, JCU opened a door to sneak into the playoffs. With a victory over Youngstown State on March 31, JCU was in a position to qualify for the playoffs.
However, the YSU win would mean nothing if JCU did not perform at the Midwest Lacrosse Festival last weekend in Columbus.
Playing conference opponents Western Kentucky, Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati, JCU needed an entire weekend to solidify their playoff chances. Also on JCU’s schedule were non-conference opponents Marshall and Saginaw Valley State.
JCU started the weekend strong, going 3-0 on Friday. While the Northern Kentucky win came via forfeit, JCU’s other two victories were the results of great team defense.
JCU first rolled Western Kentucky 8-3 before allowing only one goal to Marshall in a 4-1 victory.
Entering Saturday, JCU had a must win game against Cincinnati to begin the day. The game would be a back and forth battle from beginning to end, neither team could manage to gain more than a two goal lead for the whole game.
JCU built a two goal cushion late in the second half, but Cincinnati would battle back to tie the game.
Capitalizing on a JCU penalty, Cincinnati took the lead for good, ultimately beating JCU 9-7.
JCU’s final game of the tournament came against Saginaw Valley State later on Saturday.
Playing with a short roster, JCU battled to a 4-4 tie with Saginaw Valley before lightning would keep overtime from being played.
Senior Dan Garbes led JCU with 10 goals and one assist for the weekend.
Despite the strong showing the team just missed the playoffs. The loss to Cincinnati proved to be deadly as JCU’s final conference record was 4-2, one win shy of the playoffs.