RMU sets the tone for NEC play after big second half


Ryan Giacobbi

RMU set the tone for three consecutive NEC conference games following today’s matchup between the Colonials and the Sacred Heart Pioneers by picking up a 12-8 win on Saturday.

The game began with the Pioneers going full throttle on offense against the Colonials by getting the first goal just over a minute into the first quarter.

The Colonials answered back to the Pioneers by delivering two goals, both a minute apart from each other, the first by Adrian Torok-Orban and the other being by Matt Schmidt, with the second goal being assisted by Jimmy Perkins.

RMU continued to pound the offensive front when Robert Morris’ own Brad McCulley tacked on the third goal being in the unassisted variety with just under seven minutes to go.

The rest of the quarter was mainly involving Sacred Heart trying to play “keep away” from Robert Morris as they were scrambling to get something going with the remaining time left in the first quarter, but ultimately couldn’t as RMU held a 3-1 lead by the end of the first.

The second quarter started with Sacred Heart trying to best to get around RMU’s strategy, as told when SHU added their second goal just under two minutes in the quarter.

After Sacred Heart tacked on their second goal, they were the ones playing “keep away” from Robert Morris.

The Colonials’ stumble in the second quarter continued when the Pioneers tied the game 3-3.

A difficult second quarter proved even more difficult when the Pioneers added two more goals and taking the lead in the process, putting up a 5-3 count.

The Colonials spent the rest of the second quarter trying to start up a counterattack against Sacred Heart.

The second quarter ended 5-3 Sacred Heart.

Head coach Drew McMinn gave his thoughts on his teams’ back-and-forth effort through the first half of the game.

“A lot of it was just possession, I mean they possessed the ball for the majority of that 15 minutes there, and we only ended up getting two shots in the second quarter,” said McMinn.

Robert Morris began their offensive counterattack as they tacked on two goals, putting up a tying score at 5-5 just 20 seconds of each other, both of them were scored by Matt Schmidt, with assists from Corson Kealey and Tyson Gibson respectively.

With Matt Schmidt leading the way in the third quarter comeback, Sacred Heart wasn’t going to let down as they took a 6-5 lead with just under five minutes remaining.

SHU’s lead didn’t last long as Jimmy Perkins notched his first goal of the game unassisted, tying the game at 6-6.

With Schmidt being a strong contributor for the Colonials in the third quarter, he revealed his strategy to storming back against Sacred Heart.

“Just playing as a team, our teamwork, and ball movement, our hard work as a group, it all happened, it’s not a one-man team,” said Schmidt.

Robert Morris completed their comeback from their second quarter stumble with just over one minute left when they took a 7-6 lead thanks to Eddie Smith and his assist partner in Ryan Smith.

The third quarter ended 7-6 Robert Morris.

The final quarter began slowly as Robert Morris and Sacred Heart spent the opening minutes determining who would be taking the offensive advantage again after RMU held just a one-goal lead, until Schmidt added another goal for Robert Morris when he added another goal unassisted, making the game 8-6 with 12 minutes remaining.

With a limited amount of time left, RMU began to run away with the lead when Corson Kealey scored with an assist from Ryan Smith with 9:55 remaining, making it 9-6 RMU.

Sacred Heart began to scramble to catch up with Robert Morris’ 9-6 lead when they earned one of their points when they scored one, putting 9-7 score delivery.

Carter Yepsen and Jake Boudreau helped with the rally effort as they each delivered a goal, making it 11-8, and then 12-8 thanks to Tyson Gibson.

The game ended with a 12-8 final score to RMU.

Conference play continues when the Colonials head on the road to face the Mount St. Mary’s Mountaineers on Sat. March 24 at 12 p.m. in Emmitsburg, MD.