ST. LEO, Fla. – The No. 9 University of Tampa Spartans win their fifth straight Sunshine State Conference Tournament Championship, defeating the No. 5 Saint Leo Lions by a final score of 8-6.
INSIDE THE MATCHUP:
Final: No. 9 Tampa Spartans 8, No. 5 Saint Leo Lions 6
Records: Tampa (15-4), Saint Leo (14-2)
Location: Sunshine State Conference Championship | St. Leo, Fla.
All-time Series: The Tampa Spartans lead the all-time series against the Saint Leo Lions 7-2.
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HOW IT HAPPENED:
- The first goal of the 2018 Sunshine State Conference Championship game was scored by UT's Bryan Wright off the assist from Andrew Kew.
- With 10:34 left in the first, the Lions tie it up with their first goal of the game.
- However, less than a minute later, freshman Luke Curran netted a goal for the Spartans giving them the 2-1 lead.
- The Lions once again tied the game with 3:55 left in the first period.
- At the end of the first period, the Spartans and the Lions remained tied at 2.
- To start the second period, Saint Leo took their first lead of the game with a goal three minutes into the period.
- With 7:38 remaining in the second period, UT tied the game at three with a man-up goal from Bryan Wright.
- With :20 seconds left, Gavin Perry netted a goal off a fast break, giving the Spartans the 4-3 lead.
- At the end of the first half, the Spartans led the Lions 4-3.
- To start the second half, the Lions were the first to score, tying the game at 4.
- With 4:00 minutes left in the period, the Lions scored again, taking the lead 5-4.
- At the end of the third period, SLU led UT 5-4.
- Finally, after two unanswered goals, the Spartans tied the game with a goal from Kansai Garey, the assist by Shane Hanlon.
- With 11:07 left in the contest, Wright earned a hat trick, scoring off the assist by Garey. The Spartans now lead the Lions 6-5.
- However, shortly after, Saint Leo answered tying the game at 6.
- Chris Cox then netted his first goal of the game with 6:41 left in the contest.
- With 1:27 remaining, Wright earned his fourth goal of the contest, giving UT the two-point lead.
- The No. 9 University of Tampa Spartans defeat the No. 5 Saint Leo Lions 8-6 in the Sunshine State Conference Championship.
- UT wins their fifth consecutive Sunshine State Conference Title.
INSIDE THE STATS:
- Wright led the Spartans offensively with four goals on the day. He also led Tampa in caused turnovers with 2. Following Wright's offensive performance, Curran, Garey, Cox and Perry had goals for UT.
- Ross Dickerson won an outstanding 16 of the 17 face-offs he took. He also led the team in ground balls with 11.
- Freshman goalkeeper, B.J. Borowski recorded 14 saves in the contest.
BEYOND THE BOX:
- This is the fifth straight year that the University of Tampa Spartans have won the Sunshine State Conference Tournament.
- UT's SSC Tournament record is a perfect 9-0.
- This also marked Saint Leo's first loss in SSC this season.
SSC ALL TOURNAMENT TEAM:
- Andrew Kew
- Luke Posner
- B.J. Borowski
- Bryan Wright
- MVP: Ross Dickerson
The Spartans will advance to the NCAA Division II Tournament, with game details TBD.
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