BRUNSWICK, Maine -(Bowdoin College Athletic Communications, Charles Roy Photo) Chad Sawyer scored the game-winning goal with eight seconds remaining to give the Connecticut College men's lacrosse team a season-opening 13-12 win over Bowdoin on Saturday afternoon at Ryan Field.
The goal rescued the 18th-ranked Camels (1-0), who had squandered a five-goal lead entering the fourth quarter. 15th-ranked Bowdoin (0-1) outscored Connecticut College 6-2 over the final 14 minutes but came up just short in the loss.
Andrew Freedman led all players with three goals and four assists for the Camels. Sawyer added three goals and an assist while John Lyons and Tyler Corcoran each had two goals and an assist. Bowdoin was led by two goals and three assists from Billy Bergner. Franklin Reis had two goals and an assist while Stuart Sheehan also scored twice for the Polar Bears.
Bowdoin scored the game's first three goals before a 5-1 Connecticut College run gave the visitors a 5-4 edge midway through the second period. Bowdoin regained the lead courtesy of tallies from Will Wise and Connor O'Toole late in the period, but Sawyer - in a premonition of the second half - scored with 16 ticks remaining before halftime to deadlock the score at 6-6.
The Camels dominated the third period, getting a pair of goals from Freedman and Corcoran to spark a 5-0 surge that gave the visitors a commanding 11-6 lead heading into the final quarter.
Bowdoin answered quickly with a 4-0 run over a span of 4:24 early in the fourth period. Dan Hanley's goal with 9:03 remaining trimmed the lead to 11-10 before Freedman answered for the Camels to push the lead to 12-10 with 6:41 on the clock. The Polar Bears rebounded with a man-up goal from Berger with 5:49 to go and, after the ensuing face-off, got the game-tying tally from Sheehan with 4:50 remaining.
The teams traded possessions and good chances over the final four minutes until a failed clear by Bowdoin resulted with the Camels gaining possession with under a minute to play. With just under 15 seconds remaining, Sawyer drove to the front of the net where a scrambled ensued. From about eight yards, while falling to the ground, Sawyer wristed a low shot that slipped through the Bowdoin defense for the game-winning score with 8 seconds to go.
Christopher Williamson made 17 saves in goal for Bowdoin, who went 2-4 with the extra man. Nate Roy stopped 13 shots for the Camels, who took advantage of ten Bowdoin penalties to score three with the extra man. Connecticut College's John Hazard was the game's leading face-off winner, claiming 17 of 29 on the afternoon.
Bowdoin will return to action Wednesday evening against St. Lawrence at Georgetown University. Connecticut College will play Tufts in its home opener on Tuesday afternoon at 4:30 p.m.
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