(ROMEOVILLE, Illinois) – The men's lacrosse season opened up today for Lake Erie, but unfortunately it found itself on the bottom end of a 9-7 decision to hosting Lewis. It was a tightly contested game in the mutual season opener with neither team holding a lead of more than two goals.
Matthew Cromie (Sr., Oakville, Ontario / Newberry) led the charge for the Storm as he topped all scorers with three goals and added an assist for four points. Two of them came in a pivotal third quarter that saw Lake Erie outscore the Flyers 4-1 in the frame. The first came exactly five minutes into the second half as Neil Gardner (R-So., Boston, N.Y. / Bishop Timon) paired up with him to give the Storm a 5-4 lead. The second came just before the end of the quarter on an unassisted strike that gave Lake Erie a two-goal cushion.
Gardner added another pair of goals as did Kyle Barna (R-Sr., Medina, N.Y. / Pfeiffer) to round out the Storm scores.
Penalties at the start of the fourth hurt the Storm, however, as Lewis was able to pick up a pair of man-up goals to tie the game within the first five minutes. Defensively the Flyers were able to keep the Storm at bay as well while score two more to set the final total.
Lake Erie did have opportunities throughout the game, and despite being outshot overall 32-30, the Storm did get more on target only to see Lewis goalie Josh Calvin make 18 saves. Johnny Wilson III (R-So., Chagrin Falls, Ohio / Chagrin Falls) was impressive despite the loss as he was over 50% with 13 saves of his own.
Also helping the defense was Tyler Manning (Sr., Hamburg, N.Y. / Bishop Timon). He caused four of Lewis' 16 turnovers and picked up seven ground balls to tie for game-high honors. In his debut, Mike Flury (Fr., West Seneca, N.Y. / West Seneca) went .500 in the circle as he won nine of his 18 face-off battles.
The Storm will travel west once again a week from Saturday, this time against Indianapolis. Faceoff against the Greyhounds is set for 1 p.m.