Logo: Wesleyan Athletics

For Second Year in a Row, Cards Make NCAA Semis but Come up One Goal Short vs. Cortland St.

5.20.07

Hosting defending NCAA Division III champion Cortland St. in a tournament semi-final Sun., May 20, the Cardinals overcame a 4-2 deficit in the second stanza by scoring three goals in a span of just 52 seconds to take a 5-4 lead into the locker room at halftime. Lonnie Blumenthal '10, Grayson Connors '08 and Mike Hines '07 (#7, main photo courtesy of Tony Pratt P'10) put home the tallies that spotted Wesleyan the lead. When Jon Killeen '10 scored in the opening minute of the third period, Wesleyan owned its largest lead of the game at 6-4. But Cortland rallied for five consecutive goals to forge a 9-6 lead with 8:39 to play. Wesleyan regained its composure and got a goal from Hines, his third point of the day to bring his career figures to 80 goals and 49 assists for 129 points (12th on the Wesleyan career scoring list) at 4:41 followed by top-scorer Jason Ben-Eliyahu's 38th goal of the season at 2:25 to make it a 9-8 contest. Spike Malangone '09 set up the final goal with a rush from the defensive zone. The Cardinals had a couple of possessions in the closing moments with a shot on net by Connors with :50 left, but Cortland withstood the pressure and hung on for the win. Cortland will face Salisbury in a replay of last year's championship matchup, won by Cortland in overtime, 13-12. Goalie Charle Congleton '07 (#33, photo insert lower right, courtesy of Tony Pratt P'10) made 12 stops in his final appearance as he ended his outstanding career with a 42-9 record, making 652 saves in 62 games with a .662 save percentage and a 6.60 goals-against average. Both Hines and Congleton were selected to play in the annual USILA Division III North-South senior all-star game in Baltimore, Md., Fri., May 25. Five other Cardinals also played their final contest as three-time participants in NCAA tournament play - Jeff McLaren '06, Peter Harris '07, Tom Bendon '07, Jesse Bardo '07 and Matt Burke '07. The Cardinals ended the year with a team-record 18-3 mark.