OSHAWA, Ont. – Ryan Serville of Pickering, Ont., scored five goals and Game MVP Jordan Critch of Orangeville, Ont., tallied 10 points, including a hat-trick, leading the Guelph Gryphons to a 15-12 victory over McGill to capture the Baggataway Cup as champions of the Canadian University Field Lacrosse Association, at Oshawa Civic Stadium, Sunday.
It was a rematch of last year’s final, a 14-11 conquest over the Redmen at Percival Molson Stadium on the McGill campus. This time, Guelph came away with their second consecutive CUFLA title and their fifth in the league’s 30-year history, including banners in 2008, 2000 and 1995.
The result was the first loss against a CUFLA opponent for McGill, which went 12-0 in the regular campaign and 2-1 in post-season play, mirroring an eerily similar scenario last year when the Redmen went 10-0 during the season and 1-1 at the CUFLA tourney. It was the third straight national title game for McGill, which claimed their lone Baggataway Cup banner in 2012 at Peterborough, Ont.
The upstart Gryphons, who finished third in the CUFLA West with an 8-4 record, also mimicked last season, when they were seeded third and won three games in three days to clinch the CUFLA banner. This time, they surprised Bishop’s 13-9 in a Friday quarter-final and upset top-seeded Brock 13-12 in Saturday’s semifinal.
Guelph, which featured a lineup with three pro players from the National Lacrosse League, jumped into a 5-1 lead over McGill after the opening quarter and doubled that to a 10-2 advantage at halftime. But McGill, the top-seeded team in the CUFLA East, rallied in the second half, outscoring Guelph 10-5, including seven unanswered goals in the final stanza, only to run out of time.
“We came out very aggressively in the first quarter and took some costly penalties,” said McGill head coach Tim Murdoch, whose troops were nailed for five of the eight infractions called in the game, including all three penalties issued in the opening quarter, each of which led to a power-play marker. “Guelph has a very powerful offence and they are extremely dangerous. They out-possessed us, winning the faceoffs, most of the ground-battles and were very efficient on the power-play. We let them shoot too much from close range.
“They are very unforgiving team, strong with the extra man with some real sharpshooters. We just didn’t execute our game plan until the fourth quarter and that was pretty discouraging. Once we fell behind by so many goals, we began taking some chances with different personnel to spark a comeback. It didn’t work until the last quarter. If there was a silver lining, we never gave up and stormed back but ran out of time.”
Mike Burke‘s second goal of the contest, with 15:17 remaining, proved to be the game-winner for the Gryphons. He added three helpers to finish with five points. Rounding out the scoring for Guelph was Curtis Knight of Oshawa with three, while Brett Ulbikas and Liam Corbett added singles.
Emile Sassone-Lawless, a sophomore from Ithaca, N.Y., paced the Redmen attack with three goals and two helpers. Rhys Burnell of Abbotsford, B.C., also added a hat-trick, while Connor Goodwin of New Westminster, B.C., and Rufus Frost of Park City, Utah, contributed two goals apiece. Alexander Rohrbach of Princeton, N.J., and Quinton Bradley of Richmond, B.C., added singles.
Gryphon goaltender Michael Lalani, a native of Guelph, registered the win, while his McGill sophomore William Waesche of Greenwich, Conn., was saddled with the loss.
The Redmen are expected to lose only four seniors from their 35-man roster, including co-captains Alex Rohrbach and Jack Stewart, in addition to defender Frank Mendyk and goaltender James Spagnuolo. Another possible loss is defender Denny McDermott, who has yet to decide whether he will return.
The CUFLA, which was founded in 1985, is composed of 15 teams from across Quebec and Ontario.
|CUFLA BAGGATAWAY CHAMPIONS:|
|MOST CHAMPIONSHIPS WON:|
CUFLA FINAL SIX BAGGATAWAY CUP CHAMPIONSHIP
(Nov. 7-9, 2014)
Friday November 7
Guelph 13 vs. Bishop’s 9
Western 17, Queen’s 16 (OT)
Saturday November 8
Guelph 13 vs. Brock 12
McGill 15, Western 6
Sunday November 10
Guelph 15, McGill 11
CUFLA EAST ALL STARS:
GOALTENDER: William Waesche (McGill)
DEFENDER: Danny McDermott (McGill)
DEFENDER: Bradley Hofmann (McGill)
DEFENDER: Nico Brands (Bishop’s)
LONG-STICK MIDFIELDER: Quinton Bradley (McGill)
DEFENSIVE MIDFIELDER: Jack Stewart (McGill)
MIDFIELDER: Connor Goodwin (McGill)
MIDFIELDER: Mason Austen (Bishop’s)
MIDFIELDER: Alex Millin (Bishop’s)
ATTACKMEN: Spencer Bromley (McGill)
ATTACKMEN: Joshua Smith (Queen’s)
ATTACKMEN: Brendan Zoehner (Queen’s)
FACEOFF SPECIALIST: Jackson Rakoczy (Queen’s)
CUFLA WEST ALL STARS:
GOALTENDER: Zach Grace (Western)
DEFENDER: Matt Spangler (Western)
DEFENDER: Corey Wright (Toronto)
DEFENDER: Parker Baile (Brock)
LONG-STICK MIDFIELDER: DJ Nedelko (Guelph)
DEFENSIVE MIDFIELDER:Patrick McCrory (Western)
MIDFIELDER:Curtis Knight (Guelph)
MIDFIELDER:Brandon Staal (Brock)
MIDFIELDER:Gage Board (Brock)
ATTACKMEN: Ryan Serville (Guelph)
ATTACKMEN: Michael Buwalda (Toronto)
ATTACKMEN: Brandon Slade (Brock)
FACEOFF SPECIALIST: Nico Beaudoin (Brock)
2014 CUFLA Regular Season Standings
Guelph 15@McGill 12
Date: Sunday November 09, 2014 @1:30 pm – 2:50 pm
Location: Oshawa Civic Stadium
|#||McGILL DRESS ROSTER||G||A||PTS||PPG||SHG||PIMS|
|14||Goodwin (C), Connor||2||1||3||0||0||1|
|5||Rohrbach (C), Alex||1||1||2||0||0||0|
|77||Mendyk IV, Frank||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|34||Stewart (C), Jack||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|1||de Langley, Leland||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|21||Rakoczy (C), Paul||0||0||0||0||0||0.5|
|15:00||Guelph||3RyanServille (Power Play)
|7:17||Guelph||9CurtisKnight (Power Play)
|5:40||Guelph||2JordanCritch (Power Play)
Assisted by:14Goodwin (C)
|5:53||McGill||88RhysBurnell (Power Play)
Assisted by:5Rohrbach (C)