Competitors’ comeback thwarted by Uppgren’s OT goal
Owen Allen’s fourth goal of the game – a sprawling layout dive with three seconds remaining in regulation – gave Beavers & Co. an unlikely come-from-behind 12-11 victory over the Gunners in the 2018 Boston Box Lacrosse Summer League Championship Game Aug. 14 at South Shore Sports Center in Hingham, Mass.
Allen’s goal was the Beaver’s fourth score in the final 4:30 of the fourth quarter, as the team made up predominantly of players from Babson College finally erased a deficit that started early and lasted until the final minute.
The Gunners – whose only loss during the summer regular season was to the Beavers – jumped out to a 6-0 lead in the game’s first 13 minutes, with John Piatelli (Cornell) netting a hat trick, Greg Rogowski (Merrimack) adding two goals and Mike Donnelly (St. Lawrence) contributing a goal and two assists.
Even after Beavers & Co. broke the seal on a goal from Niall Dillon (Babson), Piatelli answered with his fourth of the game and it was 7-1 Gunners with 7:30 left in the half.
From there, however, Beavers & Co. went on a five-goal run, getting two goals from Austin Kent (Bryant), a length-of-the-floor feed from goalie Austin O’Brien (Babson) to Kyle Danehy (Merrimack), another goal plus a helper from Dillon and the first score of the night from Allen (Babson) on a nifty solo move.
Still, when Chris Reilly (Endicott) netted a slick inside feed from Mike Leonard (Assumption), the Gunners had an 8-6 edge heading into the halftime break.
The score stayed that way for the first 10 minutes of the second half, with the Gunners Christian Kunert and the Beavers’ O’Brien trading saves and frustrating open looks on both sides.
But when Connor Deehan (Vassar) finished another Donnelly feed and Dom Dimitroff (Holy Cross) went end-to-end and pocketed a transition goal 40 seconds later, the Gunners had re-established control and looked poised to nurse their 10-6 lead across the finish line.
That’s when Beavers & Co. duplicated the first-half run that saw them tighten the game by scoring six of seven goals.
Matt MacCune (Babson) got things rolling by converting a feed from Dillon, before Allen’s extra-man blast made the score 10-8 with 7 minutes remaining on the clock. Piatelli’s fifth score of the night with 5:50 remaining was a brief respite before the Beavers final onslaught.
Kevin Klempner (Babson) netted a feed from Brendan Grant (Bentley), and then fed Allen for his third score. Dillon scored his third of the night on a power drive with 1:02 remaining to tie the game, and it appeared the BBLL summer championship would come down to overtime for the second consecutive year; a year ago, the Gunners took down the Competitors in OT.
O’Brien stopped three Gunners shots in the final minute – and two other open looks went wide – before Beavers & Co. gained possession with 18 seconds left in regulation, setting up Allen’s last-second heroics.
Beavers & Co. had finished third during the summer’s regular season, splitting with the Gunners and dropping both games against Team 3d before avenging those defeats in the playoffs. Dillon led the way in the finals with six points (3 g, 3 a), but got plenty of help from Allen and his four scores. Piatelli’s five scores paced the Gunners.
The Boston Box Lacrosse League will resume in October with its premiere men’s league. The BBLL plays on Tuesday nights at South Shore Sports Center in Hingham. To get information on the league or to inquire about playing in the fall-winter league, go to BostonBoxLax.com or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. The league posts announcements and commentary on Twitter and can be followed @BostonBoxLax.
South Shore Sports Center is located at 55 Recreation Park Drive in Hingham; fans and friends can watch games from the arena seating or at the Skybox Lounge, where food and drinks are served. Information is available at southshoresportscenter.com.