TOWSON, Md. - Despite a career-high four goals by junior Thomas DeNapoli, Towson men's lacrosse (0-3) dropped a 14-9 decision to defending national champion No. 2 Loyola (2-0) at a very cold and windy Unitas Stadium on Wednesday night.
Playing in frigid conditions which included a wind chill factor of 14 degrees, the Greyhounds scored the first four goals in less than ten minutes and owned a 4-0 lead with 5:03 left in the first quarter.
"I really wish we could figure out a way not to hand over games to teams," said head coach Shawn Nadelen. "I thought after we settled down our execution we were right there in that game. I'm proud of the way our guys fought back through that second and third quarter, but we made way too many mistakes."
The Tigers used a three-goal run to cut their deficit to 6-4 midway through the second quarter asscored two of his four goals. However, Loyola added two more tallies in the final 5:32 of the half and led by 8-4 at intermission.
Trailing by 11-5 late in the third quarter, Towson went on a 4-1 run over the next 11:50 to cut Loyola's lead to three, 12-9, late in the fourth quarter. Junior Andrew Hodgson and DeNapoli each scored two goals during the run. Loyola clinched the win with two empty-net goals in the final 1:15 of the game.
DeNapoli led the Tigers with four goals while Cuccinello and Hodgson each scored twice. Ben McCarty added two assists for the Tigers. Cuccinello's two goals tied his career high set against No. 4 Johns Hopkins last weekend.
Sawyer's four goals topped Loyola while Kevin Ryan and Sean O'Sullivan each scored twice.
Loyola outshot the Tigers by a 40-30 margin and had 39 ground balls compared to 24 for Towson. The Greyhounds also won 17 of 28 faceoffs in the game.
With the victory, Loyola extended its winning streak to eight games dating back to last season.
The game was the 55th meeting between the schools. Loyola now leads the series, 28-27.
Towson returns to action on Sunday when the Tigers host Mercer at 1:00 p.m.