BEREA, Ohio – In just its second year of existence, the Capital University men's lacrosse team has claimed its first Ohio Athletic Conference regular season championship. The Crusaders finished their OAC schedule by defeating Baldwin Wallace University on Tressel Field inside The George Finnie Stadium by a 9-5 final score, Saturday afternoon.
While the work is far from complete, the Crusaders have added to an already-remarkable season by winning the OAC regular season championship, outright, for the first time in its short history. This guarantees them the No. 1 seed in the upcoming 2015 OAC Men's Lacrosse Tournament, and the right to host throughout. More information on the conference tournament will be provided at a later time.
The win also extends Capital's current winning streak to eight matches, the longest in program history.
Freshman Brennan O'Callaghan (West Chester, Ohio) once again led the Crusaders offense with five goals. His play jumpstarted their push in the third period and sealed their victory against the Yellow Jackets.
Capital had to come back from one goal down when returning from the halftime intermission. O'Callaghan ripped his 58th goal of the season, acquiring a hat trick by cleaning up a loose ball in front of the Yellow Jackets cage.
Enter Carson Paull. Paul continued his hot play as of late by scoring two goals less than three minutes apart to give Capital its first lead of the second half. He now has had goals in each of his last five matches and two or more in each of his last three.
Baldwin Wallace (12-2, 4-2 OAC) challenged Capital's lead with a man-up goal stemming from a penalty given at the start of the fourth quarter, but then the Crusaders returned the favor by cashing in on two man-up chances. Baldwin Wallace's Michael Dickey was sent to the sideline after being whistled for four different penalties for a total of five minutes, beginning just under the two-minute mark of the fourth quarter.
Stemming from a crosse-in-the-face penalty, sophomore Brent Walton (Pickerington, Ohio/Central) received a feed from Johnathan Mundell (Mt. Holly Springs, Pa.) to add to its lead. Capital scored its second man-up goal after a two-minute unsportsmanlike conduct penalty put Dickey back in the box. O'Callaghan made them pay, connecting with Walton to build a three-goal lead. He added one more with 2:33 remaining for good measure.
Capital's defense shut down the Yellow Jackets in the second half, limiting them to just one goal in the final 30 minutes, that a man-up goal.
Freshman goalkeeper Cole Palmby (Delaware, Ohio/Olentangy) led that defensive effort with 12 saves on 17 chances.
Of Baldwin Wallace's 14 turnovers, two were caused by freshman defenseman Dylan Bishop (Columbus, Ohio/Worthington-Kilbourne). Six different Capital players caused one turnover, each.
Sophomore Michael Trefethern (Canfield, Ohio) collected a game-high six ground balls and went 10-for-15 on face offs.
While O'Callaghan finished with five goals, Walton followed closely with two goals and two assists.
Capital will take a 13-2 overall record and 6-0 OAC ledger into the tournament, which will begin this Wednesday at Bernlohr Stadium. Please visit athletics.capital.edu for more information on the tournament when it becomes available.