Lakeland, Fla.- Lynn University's lacrosse team won its first Sunshine State Conference game in program history, 11-10, over Florida Southern on the road on Saturday night. The Fighting Knights improve to 6-2 overall and 1-0 in league play as junior Anthony Rainone scored a team-best four points on a hat trick and an assist, including the game-winning goal. Florida Southern falls to 3-7 overall and 1-2 in conference action.
Florida Southern opened the game with three goals in the first five minutes of the game but Lynn was relentless. The Fighting Knights would answer with five straight goals, there in the first and a pair by Austin Jerhoff in the second to take a 5-3 lead.
Sam Turner put the Fighting Knights on the board with 8:39 left in the first quarter on an assist from Jerhoff. Two minutes later Brian Kiel scored unassisted to put the Blue & White within one. With a minute to play in the first quarter Anthony Rainone scored unassisted to tie the game 3-all, a score that held through the end of the first quarter.
Jerhoff scored on an assist by Caleb Cerf off the opening face-off of the second quarter to give Lynn a 4-3 lead. Jerhoff scored again, this time unassisted, at the 11:07 mark to cap off Lynn's scoring frenzy for a 5-3 Knights lead. Florida Southern's Cody Dyer scored at 6:03 to bring the score to 5-4 but Tyler Janvrin put Lynn on top 6-4 with five minutes to go in the half. Joe Caridi and Dyer scored goals for FSC two minutes apart for a to come back and even the scoreboard 6-6 by halftime.
Lucas Claude put Florida Southern ahead 7-6 in the opening minute of the second half but Rainone answered at 12:36 to once again tie the game. Johnny Gavin notched his first goal of the game at 8:04 to put Lynn ahead 8-7. Sam Farren scored on an assist by his Moccasin teammate Tyler Novak to make it 8-all but back-to-back goals by Jacob Van Leenen and Gavin put the Fighting Knights ahead 10-8, a lead they held onto throughout the third quarter.
Caridi scored for FSC with 4:18 in the fourth after Lynn played keep-away for most of the final frame. Fifty seconds later the Mocs tied the game on a goal by Cody Gray to make it 10-all with 3:20 to play.
Lynn got the ball back with a minute to play and head coach Brian Kingsbury called for a timeout to draw up a quick play. The Blue & White came out of the huddle and ran down the clock until the officials called for a shot clock with 25 seconds. After a few quick passes Jerhoff found the open man, Rainone, who would put one past FSC's keeper to take a 11-10 lead with seven seconds left in regulation. The Mocs were unable to score off the face-off as the clock ran down and the Fighting Knights rushed the field to celebrate their first SSC win in program history.
Taylor Ferrino made 18 saves between the pipes as he earned his first win of the season in goal for Lynn. Rainone was joined by Jerhoff who also had four points with a pair of goals and two assists. Gavin also had his sixth multi-goal game of the season with two goals. Chris D'Angelo won 5-of-10 face-offs and had a team-high five groundballs. The Mocs outshot Lynn 50-35 in their seconds SSC loss of the season. Lynn's defense was impressive in the win, sophomore Shaun McDonald shut down FSC's leading scorer Dane Sorensen who managed to get off eight shots but never penetrated the goal line.
Turner's goal marked the 100th goal of the season, another first for the adolescent program. Rainone has had a hat trick in all eight games this season and is the first player to have 40 points in a season with 30 goals and 10 assists.
Lynn returns home to host MIT on Wednesday, March 25, in non-conference play. Face-off is set for 7 pm at Bobby Campbell Stadium. Fans can follow the action live at LynnFightingKnights.com. Don't forget to 'Like' us on Facebook and follow @Lynn_Knights on Twitter and Instagram for in-game updates.