Immediate Release: April 24, 2004
Contact: David Berman (email@example.com)
Kerstein, McKeown lift Bearcats over Vermont in closing minutes
Bearcats clinch no lower than #2 seed in conference tournament, will host semifinal on May 5
BURLINGTON, Vt.--Binghamton (7-5, 5-0 America East) withstood a furious charge by host Vermont (5-8, 2-3 AE) in the fourth quarter, and a goal by freshman attack Nate Kerstein (Rochester, N.Y./Irondequoit) with 3:33 remaining in the game lifted the Bearcats to an 8-7 victory on Saturday afternoon at Centennial Field. The win, combined with a Stony Brook victory over UMBC, assures Binghamton of no lower than a #2 seed in next month's America East Championship. The Bearcats will host a semifinal game on Wednesday, May 5. The opponent, as well as the complete seedings and pairings for the conference tournament, will be released on May 1 following the conclusion of all regular season games. Binghamton travels to Albany next Saturday at 1 p.m. to close out the regular season. The winner of that game will secure the #1 seed in the conference tournament.
Binghamton carried a 7-3 lead into the fourth quarter but saw the Catamounts rattle off four consecutive goals in a span of just under three minutes to tie the score midway through the period. The Bearcats refused to be overtaken, however, as sophomore goalie Kevin McKeown (Brewster, N.Y.) made seven of his 12 saves in the final frame. The game remained tied until sophomore midfielder Joe Conner (Ijamsville, Md./Urbana) fed Kerstein for the game-winner. Kerstein's shot from the left side bounced into the net, giving him his third goal of the game.
Earlier in the game, the Bearcats had broken away from a 1-1 tie with three goals in the second quarter to take a 4-2 lead into the half. After Vermont went ahead 2-1 early in the frame--its only lead of the game--freshman attack Matt McNamara (Oswego, N.Y.) and sophomore attack Phil Cavallo (Cedarhurst, N.Y./Lawrence) scored back-to-back goals in a span of 55 seconds midway through the quarter and sophomore attack Brian Chaapel (Penn Yan, N.Y./Penn Yan Academy) added a goal with one second left in the half.
McNamara finished with two goals and two assists for Binghamton, while sophomore midfielder David Burpoe (Arlington, Va./Wakefield) added the other goal. Senior midfielder Chris Healy (Freeport, N.Y.) had one assist.
Vermont outshot its visitors 32-23, controlled 11 of 17 faceoffs and maintained a 25-15 edge in ground balls, but was still unable to outdo the only undefeated team left in conference play. The Bearcats won for the sixth time in seven games since starting the season 1-4.
NOTES: Men's lacrosse becomes the third Binghamton team to host a conference tournament event since the school moved to Division I ... The golf team hosted the America East Championship last April and the men's soccer team hosted both a semifinal game and the title game of the conference tournament last fall ... Both teams captured conference titles as hosts and advanced to the NCAA Championship.
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