Written by John Fitzgerald
The fifth-ranked Lake Erie Storm defeated Belmont Abbey 8-4 this afternoon at Alumni Field in a matchup of nationally-ranked teams.
Lake Erie moves to 4-0, while the Crusaders drop to 5-1.
Less than a minute into the contest, Callum Tanner scored a goal that gave the Crusaders a flurry of excitement and momentum. Belmont Abbey maintained its lead until Lake Erie's Connor Ward scored his first goal of the season for the Storm near the end of the first quarter.
It was the only lead Belmont Abbey would have all game. After trailing 2-1 at halftime, the Crusaders gave up three goals in the opening 5:01 of the second half. Jason Hollister scored a goal with 5:22 left in the third to put the Abbey within one goal of Lake Erie, but it was the last time the Crusaders would score. Shortly after, a turnover led to another Lake Erie goal.
The Abbey's defense stepped it up in the fourth, shutting out the Storm for the game's last 11:41. After the game, Crusaders Head Coach Chris Barrett said "Lake Erie is an excellent team, they made us pay for our mistakes, but it was a good learning experience for our guys."
The Crusaders are back in action Tuesday when they host Alderson-Broaddus at 4:00 p.m.