Coming into Saturday’s matchup with the Vermont Catamounts, the UVA men’s lacrosse team needed some help.
The Hoos were 9-4 overall, but just 1-3 in ACC play after beating North Carolina on April 7. Syracuse (4-0) and Duke (3-1) had locked up the top two seeds for the ACC tournament. UNC stood at 0-3 in conference as the day’s games began, with Notre Dame 1-2; a Tarheel win would create a three-team logjam for the final two spots.
That led to this absurd series of tie-breaking scenarios.
Thread: There has been a ton of confusion regarding the ACC mens' lacrosse tiebreaker in the last week. Based on information from the ACC, schools and we (the media) were given different interpretations of the rule. Over the last few days, the ACC has clarified the tiebreak.— Anish Shroff (@AnishESPN) April 21, 2018
If UNC wins... we get complicated pic.twitter.com/9j7XMb1fNv— Anish Shroff (@AnishESPN) April 21, 2018
- Notre Dame wins: UVA is in the ACC Tournament.
- UNC wins, but the margin of victory is less than eight goals and Notre Dame scores 6 goals or more: UVA is in the ACC Tournament.
- Anything else: UVA is NOT in the ACC Tournament.
The Heels and Irish started at noon, with UVA–Vermont hot on their heels at 1:00. And right around 1:30...
Notre Dame got the magical sixth goal that lowered blood pressures in Cavalier households nationwide.
UNC held on in a tight affair, lodging a 10-9 win thanks to a last-second Alex Bassil save. But if you’re following all this, 9 > 6 and a one-goal margin is less than an eight-goal margin and that means: UVA IS IN THE ACC TOURNAMENT!!
Oh, yea: UVA won too.
The Hoos overcame a 6-5 halftime deficit and outscored Vermont 2-0 in the fourth quarter to earn their own 10-9 victory. Mike D’Amario led the way on offense with three goals and an assist, and Dox Aitken chipped in two assists and a goal. Justin Schwenk won 14 of 22 face-offs, with Alex Rode registered 10 saves on 19 shots on goal.
Vermont goalie Nick Washuta made 19 saves for the Catamounts. Braiden Davis and Jack Knight each tallied three points.
UVA entered the fourth quarter down 9-8. For more than 12 minutes, Virginia couldn't cut into the lead and Vermont couldn't stretch it out. With 2:30 left in the game, Mikey Herring leveled the score with a goal off a Dox Aitken assist. Michael Kraus then put UVA in front with an unassisted goal with 1:47 remaining.
Vermont had the ball with a chance to tie in the final minute. Kyle Kology went to the penalty box with five seconds left. But the man-down defense held strong and forced a turnover, and the clock showed zeroes with the Cavalier lead intact.
UVA will face Syracuse in the tournament semifinals on Friday, April 27, at Klockner Stadium (Virginia is this year’s host). A win would put them in the finals on Sunday, against the winner of Duke-Notre Dame. The Blue Devils and Irish face off at 6:00, with Virginia and Syracuse starting at approximately 8:30.