Bears fall to No. 1 Cortland, clinch final playoff spot


CORTLAND, N.Y.—The SUNY Potsdam men's lacrosse team (6-7, 2-4 SUNYAC) slowed down top-ranked SUNY Cortland (15-0, 6-0), but fell to the undefeated Red Dragons 10-5 on Saturday afternoon. Despite the loss, the Bears still clinched the fourth and final SUNYAC playoff spot. Junior midfielder Derek Frost paced Potsdam with two goals and an assist, while Zach Hopps led the Red Dragons with a goal and four helpers.

Cortland's Billy Davis opened the scoring at the 12:04 mark of the first quarter, but Frost answered less than two minutes later with an assist from junior captain Rob Kunz. Andrew Billups put the Red Dragons up for good with 1:13 left and the Bears trailed 2-1 after 15 minutes.

James Stavrakis scored twice in the opening three minutes of the second stanza and Joe Slavik scored at 3:02 to give Cortland a 5-1 advantage. Senior midfielder Pat Morrill struck with just three seconds left and Potsdam was within 5-2 at the half.

Cortland opened the third quarter with three straight, before senior attackman Kyle Nicholas scored at 8:43 to make it an 8-3 contest. Davis and Cody Consul each scored in a seven-second span to put the Red Dragons up by seven with 6:32 remaining. Kunz scored a man-up goal with less than a minute to go on feed from senior attackman Jeff Seager and it was 10-4 after 45 minutes.

The Bears scored the only goal of the fourth quarter. Frost recorded a man-up tally at 12:36 with an assist from Seager.

In goal, senior captain Stefan Sloma made 14 saves in the first 58:23. Senior Ryan Doyle was between the pipes for the remaining 1:37. Mike Kaminski finished with eight saves to seal the win for Cortland.

The Red Dragons topped Potsdam in shots (49-32), ground balls (39-26) and faceoffs (12-6).

The Bears now prepare for rematch with the Red Dragons in Cortland at 4 p.m. on Wednesday. The same teams squared off in the SUNYAC Championship game at the close of the 2011 season.