By: Sean Neidig, sports information graduate assistant
WILMINGTON, Ohio – Capital University Men's Lacrosse continued its path towards conference glory on Wednesday with a dominating 28-4 win at Wilmington College, clinching the top seed in the upcoming Ohio Athletic Conference and at least a share of the OAC regular season title.
The win was also Capital's 14th in a row and the Crusaders are 8-0 in OAC play, 14-1 overall.
Capital scored only two goals in the opening five minutes of the game and Wilmington got on the board at the 8:55 mark of the first quarter. The rest of the first period belonged solely to the Crusaders though as Capital peppered the Wilmington net with x shots over the next nine minutes and scored 10 more goals to take a 12-1 lead into the second quarter.
The second period was not as explosive as the first for the Crusaders but Capital still outscored Wilmington 5-1 and had a 17-2 lead at the half. Capital outshot Wilmington 37-7 in the first 30 minutes of play and had 20 ground balls to Wilmington's six.
Junior attacker CJ Hughes (Cincinnati, Ohio/Walnut Hills) led the way offensively for Capital with five first-half goals and three assists for eight points. The five goals gave Hughes 150 scores in his career making him the second men's lacrosse player at Capital to reach that milestone. Freshman Jack Scharner (Maineville, Ohio/King's) scored three goals and dished out three assists in the first half.
In the third quarter, the Crusaders outscored the Quakers 4-2 and Capital had a 3-1 advantage in the fourth. Capital finished with a 58-18 edge in shots, a 32-12 lead in ground balls and was a perfect 13-for-13 on clear attempts.
In addition to the offensive output from Hughes and Scharner, Spencer Towne (Powell, Ohio/Olentangy Liberty) had a career-high six points on three goals and three assists and Nathan Mork (Granville, Ohio/Granville) scored a career-best four goals. Ryan Rampi (Hilliard, Ohio/Hilliard Darby) recorded two goals and two assists and 17 players registered at least one point.
The win confirmed that Capital would hold at least a share of the OAC title, the first time that has happened since 2015 when the team won the conference outright. By virtue of tiebreakers over the other OAC teams, even if the Crusaders are not the sole regular season champs after Saturday's game they will host the OAC Tournament.
Before that though Capital will host the University of Mount Union on Saturday, April 27 with the team's scheduled to face off at 1 p.m. Before the game, the team will recognize the six seniors on this year's roster.