Men's lacrosse edged by No. 20 Nazareth in season opener

The No. 16 Geneseo men's lacrosse team fell in their season opener last Saturday to the No. 20 Nazareth Golden Flyers, by a score of 14-12.

Nazareth rode a wave of second quarter scoring to facilitate the win, tallying eight goals to Geneseo's one in the frame, then holding on through the Blue Knights' run in the third quarter and late pressure in the fourth.

Geneseo started the game strong, taking a 5-3 lead in the first quarter, with senior attackman Tom Costanza scoring the first two of his three goals in the game, a feat that helped earn him a nod as Geneseo Student Athlete of the Week.

That all changed, however in the second quarter. Nazareth scored twice in the first three and a half minutes, then, after a goal by Geneseo sophomore attackman Craig Lange, six more times before the half.

Not even a goaltending change by coach Jim Lyons, one that sent Costanza's younger brother, junior Dennis Costanza into the net, was able to slow down the Nazareth attack or spark the Geneseo offense.

The Blue Knights' fortunes changed with halftime. However better Nazareth was than Geneseo in the second quarter, the opposite was as true in the third quarter.

The Blue Knights scored five times while allowing only one goal, and drew to within one of the Golden Flyers by the end of the quarter. Senior Mike Cintineo completed his hat trick with two goals, and Lange added his second of the game to pace the scoring for the Blue Knights in the third.

Unfortunately for Geneseo, Nazareth regained some momentum by winning the opening faceoff of the fourth quarter and doubling their lead with the subsequent possession.

There was no quit in the Geneseo team, as they responded under a minute later to make the score 13-12, on senior midfielder Jim Fiacco's second goal of the game, but Nazareth pulled away for good with just over 11 minutes remaining in the game, taking a 14-12 lead. They then hung on the rest of the game, riding a hot goaltender - a goalie who made seven saves in the fourth quarter - down the stretch to hang on for the win.

In net Dennis Costanza made nine saves in his relief effort.

Geneseo travels to Hobart College in Geneva on Friday to take on Keuka College before heading to Orlando, Fl. for a spring break tournament.