ST. LEO, Fla. – The No. 9 University of Tampa Spartans defeated the No. 15 Florida Tech Panthers 19-12 thus advancing to the championship of the Sunshine State Conference Tournament.
INSIDE THE MATCHUP:
Final: No. 9 Tampa Spartans 19, Florida Tech Panthers 12
Records: Tampa (14-4), Florida Tech (9-6)
Location: Sunshine State Conference Tournament | St. Leo, Fla.
All-time Series: The Tampa Spartans lead the all-time series against the Florida Tech Panthers 9-1.
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HOW IT HAPPENED:
- The first goal of the 2018 Sunshine State Conference Championship was scored by UT's Jake Mosher McGraw off the assist from Shane Hanlon.
- Two minutes later, the Spartans scored again with a goal from Matt Vetter, assisted by Chris Cox.
- With 8:21 remaining in the first period, senior Blaine Birch recorded his first goal of the season, giving the Spartans a 3-0 lead.
- Tampa then earned the next two goals of the contest, shutting out Florida Tech in the first period 5-0. The last two goals of the first period came from Hunter Van Horn and Hanlon respectively.
- Starting the second half, Andrew Kew earned a goal for the Spartans giving them the 6-0 lead.
- The Panthers finally earned their first goal of the game with 12:39 remaining in the half.
- Van Horn then netted a goal for Tampa, the assist from Vetter.
- Tech got their second goal of the game with 8:42 left in the half.
- Bryan Wright then logged an unassisted goal for the Spartans, giving them the 8-2 lead.
- The Panthers answered with 6:39 left to play.
- FIT the netted their fourth and fifth goal of the game with 2:58 remaining in the contest.
- At the end of the first half, the No. 9 Spartans lead the No. 15 Panthers 8-5.
- Coming out of halftime, the Spartans were the first team back on the board with a goal from Vetter, his second of the game.
- Tech answered, narrowing the Spartans lead to three.
- The Panthers then netted another goal three minutes later. UT still held the lead over FIT 9-7.
- The final goal of the period was netted by the Panthers, cutting the Spartan's lead to one.
- At the end of the third period UT lead FIT by a score of 9-8.
- To start the fourth period, Mosher McGraw earned a goal, the assist from Hanlon.
- Kew then netted his second goal of the game, earning the 11-8 lead.
- Chris Cox the berried one for the Spartans, his first goal of the contest.
- After, winning the faceoff, Ross Dickerson scored for Tampa with 10:55 left on the clock.
- After four unanswered goals, FIT earned their ninth point of the contest.
- However, shortly after Luke Curran scored for Tampa increasing the Spartans lead over the Panthers 14-9.
- A minute later, the Panthers scored again, cutting Tampa's lead to four.
- FIT earned their 11th goal with 7:51 remaining, however, six seconds later Dickerson netted another goal for UT, his third of the season.
- With 7:24 remaining in the contest, the Panthers refused to quit fighting scoring again. The Spartans held the lead 15-12.
- Moshe McGraw then gave Tampa the 16-12 lead with a goal from Van Horn. 6:03 remaining in the contest.
- Hanlon then scored again for the Spartans with 4:18 remaining.
- Kew netted his final goal of the day giving Tampa the 18-12 lead.
- To seal the deal Jack Shelton earned the final goal of the game, his second of the season, with :40 seconds remaining.
- The No. 9 University of Tampa Spartans defeat the No. 15 Florida Tech Panthers 19-12 in the first round of the Sunshine State Conference Championships.
INSIDE THE STATS:
- Kew led the Spartans offensively with three goals and one assist, followed by Mosher McGraw with three goals, and Hanlon who ended the contest with two goals and two assists.
- Defensively, Luke Robideaux led the way with two caused turnovers and eight ground balls.
- Ross Dickerson won 25-32 faceoffs he took, in addition to leading the team in ground balls with 13 and earning two goals.
- In the cage, B.J. Borowski had five saves for the Spartans, followed by Bryan Karn with three.
The Spartans will play in the 2018 Sunshine State Conference Championship game on Sunday, April 29th at 1:00 p.m. The game will take place at Saint Leo University against the winner of the Saint Leo vs. Rollins matchup.
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