[EDIT: We apologize for erroneously reporting that Leesville’s Brian Fitz had a concussion. He does not have a concussion and his family is monitoring his health privately. ]
Raleigh, NC - It was the Wakefield Wolverines (7-1) who came out on top 12-11 over former conference rival Leesville (6-4), in what was an epic back and forth game that had to be decided in overtime.
The game started off slow, with both teams trading several empty possessions. Wakefield ran a solid 3-3 zone that stifled the Pride for much of the first quarter, until sophomore attackman Sean O'Brian got The Pride on the board about halfway through the first quarter.
The Pride continued to find success in transition, first on give-and-go between sophomore Zach Blakeman and midfielder Caden Atkinson, and the second coming after the ensuing face-off with Blakeman scoring from a Brian Fitz assist.
Down 3-0, Wakefield was able to cut the deficit to 2 right before the end of the quarter with an unassisted score from junior attackman Hunter Bobrick.
The second quarter was dominated by Wakefield, as they scored 3 unanswered goals and their defense stifled most of Leesville's offensive possessions. The Wolverines shared the ball nicely with 5 different players registering a point in the first half.
What looked like a potential low-scoring affair got off to a quick-scoring, excitement filled second half. Leesville assessed two-minute non-releasable high-hit penalty 10 seconds into the 3rd quarter. Junior midfielder Connor Pirrung, and company, took advantage quickly as Pirrung found the back of the net seconds into the penalty. Junior attackman Kevin Ritter then added insult to injury, as the Wolverines added a second goal from the man-up opportunity.
Just as it looked like Wakefield might pull away, Leesville went on to score five unanswered goals. With Fitz out, Sean O'Brian stepped up big time, as the sophomore attackman helped orchestrate the 5 goal run by dishing out two assists and scoring a goal.
Down 9-6 in the 4th, Wakefield pulled itself together and went on their own wave of unanswered goals. Over a 4-minute span, Connor Pirrung added 2 more goals, and attackman Austin Patrey scoring his second of the night.
Following the tying goal, Leesville answered straight from the face-off, with O'Brian finding Blakeman to make it 10-9. The tug-of-war continued, as Wakefield took back the lead with two quick goals. With 1:42 left in regulation Leesville's junior midfielder Tyler Gray scored from about 13 yards out on a potentially deflected bounce shot.
Wakefield took a time-out after winning the ensuing face off. The Wolverines managed a clear-cut opportunity with seconds to go, but were denied by the Leesville keeper.
In overtime, the game was fairly back and forth until some individual heroics came into play. Connor Pirrung weaved in and out of several Leesville players to put away the game winner.
Leesville will travel to Sanderson on 4/11, while Wakefield will host Jordan on 4/12.
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