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Senior attacker Sam Handley looks to pass around a Brown defender during the game at Franklin Field on April 9. Credit: William Bartoc

After dropping to 4-3 overall and 1-2 in Ivy League play following last weekend’s overtime loss to Yale, Penn men’s lacrosse looked to bounce back with a return home to face Brown, but fell short yet again, this time by a 12-10 margin. 

Entering the matchup, the Bears (6-4, 1-2) were a game over .500 overall, though winless in conference matchups and coming off a three-game losing streak, falling to Harvard, UMass, and Princeton in consecutive games.

The Quakers (4-4, 1-3) hoped to take advantage of the sputtering Bears, and got off to a tremendous start. In the final seconds of the first quarter, senior attacker Dylan Gergar snuck a shot past Brown’s sophomore goalie Connor Theriault. This was Gergar’s second goal of the game, which, combined with goals from senior attacker Sam Handley, junior midfielder Luke DiGiacobbe, and sophomore attacker Cam Rubin, extended the Penn lead to 5-0 after one period of play. Senior goalkeeper Patrick Burkinshaw faced five shots on goal in the first and defended all five. He would finish the day with 17 saves, his season high thus far.

However, just as the first quarter was all Quakers, the second belonged to the Bears. Brown notched three straight goals in the first four minutes of the second period of play, interrupted by a second goal from Rubin, and then rattled off four more to take a 7-6 lead. The Quakers’ senior long stick midfielder BJ Farrare scored in the final minute to tie the game back up entering the half, but the momentum had firmly shifted.

Brown junior midfielder Griffin King scored to open the second half and bring the score to 8-7, and the Quakers would not retake the lead for the remainder of the game. Gergar scored his third goal shortly after to even the score, but a 4-2 run in the Bears’ favor from that point forward solidified the win for the Bears. Theriault held Penn scoreless for the final 11:36 of the game, much of which the Quakers spent down only one goal, and a late shot edged past Burkinshaw eliminated any hope of a comeback.

Despite the surprising loss, there were some notable bright spots for the Quakers. It was the fourth time this season that Gergar recorded a three-goal outing. Other than him, there were plenty of goals to go around for the Quakers as seven different members of the Red and Blue found the back of the net. 

The loss brought Penn back to 4-4 overall on the season and 1-3 in the Ivy League, and brought the all-time record between the two schools to 35-23 in favor of the Bears. 

The Quakers will host Harvard next Saturday at 3:30 p.m. in their last game at Franklin Field this season, as they hope to stop this slight skid.