This post has been updated.
It was celebrations all around at Schoellkopf field on Saturday afternoon. Riding a six-game winning streak entering the contest, Cornell men’s lacrosse had no trouble dispatching Brown, 19-5, and the Red’s seniors were honored on the field after the final regular season home game of their careers.
The win secured Cornell (10-3, 4-1 Ivy) a berth in the Ivy League tournament as the conference’s No. 2 overall seed. The winner of the conference playoff, set to take place May 4 and 6 in New York City, receives an automatic qualifying bid to the NCAA tournament.
“[Reaching the Ivy tournament is] something that we set out as one of our initial objectives, one of our goals,” said interim head coach Peter Milliman. “I wouldn’t say we’re going to settle on being satisfied by it because there’s still a lot more left to do.”
Cornell jumped out to an early and commanding lead, rattling off the game’s first 11 goals, while the Bears (5-7, 2-3) didn’t score until more than 10 minutes had elapsed in the second quarter.
“We won a few scrappy ground balls and faceoffs early on,” Milliman said. “We’ve had a pretty consistent run here offensively where we get a few possessions early and make them count by moving the ball well and finishing our chances.”
The Red did more than just dominate the possession battle early and capitalize on its offensive opportunities — Cornell played near seamless lacrosse on the defensive end of the field, allowing the offense’s production to widen the gap with every chance.
“It was really just a team effort, getting the ball to our offense,” Milliman said. “Our defense was about as good as I’ve seen them, they really were tough when they needed to be tough and selling out for big plays for us.”
Senior midfielder Jordan Dowiak was the standout from his class on the day, registering a total of four points on three goals and an assist. Dowiak’s classmate midfielder Charlie Estill, an Ithaca native, came into the game late and scored a goal of his own in his last career regular season game at Schoellkopf.
“It’s awesome to get a win against [Brown],” Dowiak said. “Actually, Charlie and I had never beaten Brown in our time here … So that felt good.”
Sophomore attack Jeff Teat had an impressive day, coming away with two goals and a career-high eight assists. Teat’s statistics are among the tops in the nation, and the sophomore is continuing to produce in a manner which qualifies him as perhaps the best player in the country.
“As a team, I think we’ve had it all along,” Teat said. “I think we’re really showing our dominance now. And going into the Ivy League tournament, we’re going to need it.”
Fifth-year senior Christian Knight started in the goal after missing several games throughout the season due to an undisclosed injury. Knight made eight saves before giving way to sophomore Caelahn Bullen at the end of the third quarter.
“It’s been a long process, about four weeks without playing,” Knight said. “Today it was awesome to get back out there. Everyone played hard from the seniors down, and it really made today special.”
Of Knight’s injury status, Milliman confirmed that the senior is now healthy and will continue to be Cornell’s starter.
Sophomore faceoff specialist Paul Rasimowicz went down with an injury in the middle of the second quarter, leaving the Red without one of its bright spots for the remainder of the contest.
“We’re going to see, I don’t know exactly what the injury was,” Milliman said. “So we got to wait and see how he is, so we’ll hope for the best.”
While it was the last regular season home game for the seniors, there is still a chance they are able to play on Schoellkopf one last time. If the Red plays well enough to earn a top-eight seed in the NCAA tournament, it will host a first-round game in Ithaca.
Until then, Cornell will return to action next weekend against Princeton in the final game of the regular season before heading to the Ivy League tournament in New York City the following week.