Junior attacker John Wagner scored two goals in the final 10 minutes of action, including the game-winner in overtime, to push #19 Marquette past #6 Ohio State, 8-7. It’s Marquette’s first win over a ranked team this season as the Golden Eagles advance to 3-0 in 2018 and post a major quality win early in the season.
It was a wild one in the second half of the first day of the 2018 Midwest Lacrosse Classic in Pontiac, Michigan. We had four ties and a lead change across 65 minutes of lacrosse as the two teams never got further than two goals away from each other and neither team never scored more than three goals in a quarter. The biggest firepower period was the first quarter, where Ohio State jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead before Marquette tied it late. The Buckeyes had a quick answer, though, and we went to the 2nd with OSU up 3-2.
Jackson Reid staked Ohio State to a 4-2 lead early in the second frame. Anthony Orsini answered to pull Marquette within one, and if not for a pushing penalty on Ohio State, there might not have been another goal before the half. There was, though, and Keaton Thomson capitalized for his first career goal to knot things at four each.
The two teams traded goals to open the third, with Marquette coming out ahead 6-5 on Wagner’s first of the game. Ryan Fazio popped one in late in the quarter to give the Golden Eagles a buffer heading to the fourth, but that 7-5 lead was ill-fated. The shots in the fourth quarter were even, seven each, but goals by Jack Jasinski and Lukas Buckley knotted the game at seven with 7:54 to go, and neither team could end this one in regulation.
That meant four minutes of sudden victory overtime, and hooooooboy was it a thing. Marquette had the first possession, but after a save by Ohio State’s Matthew Smidt and a hustle after the ball as it went out of bounds, it was the Buckeyes’ turn. They tried a little chicanery with a hidden ball trick, but Marquette didn’t fall for it, and Cole Blazer stuffed the Buckeyes for his seventh save of the game. That meant it was WAGNER TIME!
John Wagner...just called game for @MarquetteMLax.— Travis Eldridge (@tgeldrid) March 3, 2018
Golden Eagles upset No. 6 Ohio State in OT. I wasn't sure what to make of this team in the preseason, but this is a statement win for @MUcoachAmplo & company. pic.twitter.com/PN6EhEMDCK
He twisted inside and laserbeamed a shot past Smidt to send the Golden Eagles back to the hotel happy.
Wagner and Orsini both scored twice to lead the Golden Eagles attack, and both had a helper in the course of the game for the team lead in points, too. Jasinski and Buckley each had two goals for Ohio State to pace their offense, but it was who wasn’t scoring that did the trick for Marquette. Tre Leclaire, the hero of Ohio State’s overtime win over Jacksonville last weekend, was held without a point in the game and only got off three shots. Head coach Joe Amplo told the Marquette Wire after the game that Nick Grill deserves the credit for shutting down Leclaire, but the whole squad did their part, too.
“I thought Nick Grill did a good job on Tre LeClaire,” Amplo said. “Our plan was to just not come off of him as much, try and get through every pick, and Nick did a good job of that. But, his teammates allowed him to. It was a great team defensive effort.”
Up Next: Marquette isn’t done with the 2018 Midwest Lacrosse Classic quite yet. They’ll be back in action bright and early on Sunday morning. First draw against Bellarmine is scheduled for 10am Central, and the Knights are 1-4 on the year after falling to Detroit-Mercy by a score of 11-5 on Friday afternoon.