HARROGATE, Tenn. --- Dallas Wade scored the winning goal with 1:10 left in overtime as Tusculum defeated Lincoln Memorial 13-12 in a South Atlantic Conference men's lacrosse match Wednesday afternoon.
The Pioneers (7-2, 3-1 SAC) let a 4-1 lead slip away in the second quarter, then regained the lead with six unanswered goals in the third quarter before the Railsplitters (5-5, 1-3 SAC) came back to tie the game with less than five minutes left in regulation. Wade then gave the Pioneers their second overtime win of the season by converting a short pass from Liam Macdonald in front of the LMU goal.
Ben Boyd led the Pioneers with four goals, Tyler Klarner had two goals and an assist and Nate Wade scored twice for Tusculum, which trailed 9-5 early in the third quarter before exploding for six goals in just over eight minutes to regain the lead.
Kyle Arcuri led LMU with three goals, Billy Kopsky had two goals and two assists and Adam Golia scored a pair of fourth-quarter goals, the latter with 4:48 left to knot the score at 12-12. Robert Tucker also scored twice for the Railsplitters, who had a six-goal run of their own between the second and third quarters to turn a 5-3 deficit into a 9-5 lead.
Goals from Nate Wade and Klarner helped the Pioneers to a 2-0 lead after 6 1/2 minutes of play, before Kopsky got the Railsplitters on the board with 6:02 left in the opening quarter. Klarner and Timothy Drumtra closed the quarter with goals as Tusculum led 4-1 after the opening 15 minutes.
In the second quarter, Arcuri and Tucker scored a minute apart to bring the Railsplitters within 4-3 with 11:31 left in the first half. Chris Ryan answered 26 seconds after Tucker's goal for a 5-3 Pioneer lead, but the Railsplitters closed the half with four straight goals, including two in a six-second span in the final 40 seconds to go on top 7-5 at intermission.
Tucker and Arcuri scored in the opening three minutes of the third quarter to give LMU its largest lead at 9-5, but the Pioneers began to rally as Boyd scored with 8:28 left in the quarter to cut the margin to 9-6. Goals from Cam Rogers and Nate Wade brought the Pioneers within 9-8 with 5:26 left in the third quarter, and Andrew Kransberger followed with the equalizer with 2:32 left to knot the score at 9-9.
Boyd would score twice more in the final minute of the third quarter, netting a man-up goal off an assist from Ryan with 48 seconds left and adding his third of the game from Macdonald with 16 seconds left to send the Pioneers to the fourth quarter with an 11-9 lead.
Goals from LMU's Golia and Tusculum's Boyd left the Pioneers on top 12-10 with 10:46 to go, but the Railsplitters tied the game on goals from Arcuri with 7:39 left and Golia with 4:48 to play. Macdonald had a scoring opportunity in the final minute but was denied by LMU keeper Joe Medel, while a shot by Tucker just before the buzzer was blocked by the Pioneer defense.
In the overtime, LMU won the faceoff but both teams had trouble setting up their offense as both the Pioneers and Railsplitters had each of their first two possessions end with turnovers. Kopsky's bid for the winning goal was stopped by Tusculum's Kevin Haggerty, and the Pioneers worked the ball to the other end. Ryan had a shot saved by Medel, but Macdonald grabbed the loose ball at the side of the net and fed Dallas Wade for the game-winner.
Tusculum finished the match with a 46-34 advantage in shots over Lincoln Memorial, including a 15-7 edge in the third quarter. The Railsplitters had a 42-38 lead in ground balls but turned the ball over 22 times to just 10 by the Pioneers.
On defense, Joel Edgar had seven ground balls and three caused turnovers for the Pioneers, while Boyd and Macdonald had four ground balls apiece. Quinn McKitrick and Alexander Kleinberg also each finished with two caused turnovers for the Pioneers in the contest.
Arcuri paced the Railsplitters with seven ground balls, with six from Hunter Clark and five by Josh Hernandez. Clark was 13-for 21 on faceoffs for LMU, with Hernandez going 7-for-8 at the dot as LMU won 20 of the 29 draws in the match.
Haggerty finished with nine saves in goal for the Pioneers, while Medel had 17 stops for the Railsplitters including six in the second quarter.
Tusculum's man-up offense, which leads Division II at 56.7 percent (17-for-30), went 1-for-2 against Lincoln Memorial while the man-down defense held the Railsplitters off the board in their only opportunity.
The Pioneers and Railsplitters have played one-goal games in each of their three meetings all-time, including two overtime games in Harrogate. Tusculum won the first meeting between the teams 8-7 in double overtime on a goal by Ryan on March 17, 2015, only to see LMU come to Greeneville and win 13-12 on March 30 of last season.
Tusculum will be back home at Pioneer Field on Saturday to face Queens University of Charlotte in a SAC match beginning at 3 p.m.