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The University of Hartford men’s lacrosse team fell short in its quest to repeat as America East champions, falling at top-seeded Stony Brook, 9-8, in the semifinal round of the conference tournament Wednesday night.
The Hawks, who have qualified for the league tourney the last two seasons following an eight-year absence, finish the season 6-9.
Hartford's offense struggled to find its rhythm early in the game as Stony Brook jumped out to a 4-0 lead with 12:37 left to play in the second quarter. The Hawks scored the last two goals of the half to cut the deficit to 4-2 at the intermission. After Stony Brook extended its lead back to three goals in the third period, the Hawks closed the gap to a single point on five occasions. They were never able to register the equalizer.
Junior Jared Franze paced Hartford’s offense with a pair of goals while senior attacker Carter Bender added one to go along with three assists for a team-best four points.
Senior Ben Knapton forced his opponents into three turnovers while Scott Bement made seven saves in cage for the Hawks. Bement closes out his career as the third winningest goalie in Hartford’s 27-year Division I history (17) and is ranked fourth in the record books with 506 career rejections.
Bender finishes his career as the program’s fourth-best scorer with 169 points. Ryan Compitello and Aidan Genik have also left their marks in Hartford’s record book. Compitello is in third place with 82 career assists and Genik is fifth in goals (106).