BANNER ELK, N.C. - The Catawba College Indians held onto to defeat Lees-McRae College 9-7 to spoil the Bobcat's season finale and senior day at Tate Field Wednesday night.
The Indians got on the scoreboard first with 12 minutes to play when Wayne Carbiener scored a man-up goal on an assist from Marty Tuohy. Brandon Marks, who was one of Lees-McRae's seven seniors honored before the game, tied the game with a goal nine minutes into the first period. After goals from Touhy and Landon Guntman knotted the game at two, Catawba's Dave Banik scored with 18 seconds left in the period to give the Indians a 3-2 lead.
In the second period, it was all Catawba as the Indians posted a 3-1 goal advantage. Braden Artem scored a goal and Banik had two goals for Catawba, while Brad Garner scored Lees-McRae's lone goal in the second. The Indians took a 6-3 lead into the half.
However in the third, the Bobcats didn't quit. Less than a minute into play, Brett Yusiewicz got the Lees-McRae offense started. Guntman found the back of the net again at the 9:45 mark, and less than a minute later, Danny Ives put one away to tie the game at six. Freddie Turcio scored the final goal of the period to give the Indians the slight 7-6 advantage heading into the final stanza.
Tuoghy provided the game-winning goal with 14:13 remaining in the contest on an assist from Artem to make it 8-6. Lees-McRae senior, Matt Markey, scored the team's final goal of the contest for the Bobcats with 8:59 left in the game to cut the lead to 8-7, but Artem added an insurance goal with 4:16 left to give the Indians the 9-7 win.
Catawba's Josh Liptal made four saves including two in the final period and one with just over two-minutes to play to keep the door closed on the Bobcats. Andy Nesdill made kept the Bobcats in the game with a stellar 16 save performance including five in the first and fourth periods.
The Indians had three players with three points. Tuohy and Artem had two goals and an assist, and Banik led all scorers with three goals. Casey Chinn had a game-high seven ground balls and was 16-of-19 on face-offs. Brett Howe had five ground balls, and Turcio, Banik, Drew Stoltz and Dan Eron collected three ground balls. Stoltz also caused three turnovers.
For the Bobcats, Guntam and Markey led the team with two points. Gunt had two goals, and Markey had a goal and an assists. Nesdil paced the team with six ground balls, and Marks had four ground balls. Four other Bobcats had three ground balls - Forrest MacConnell, Markey, John White and Edward Dolan. MacConnell had a game-high five caused turnovers.
Catawba narrowly won the ground ball battle 35-33, but double Lees-McRae's shot total 34-17. The Indians also dominated the face-off winning 16 of the 19 face-offs.
Catawba was also successful on a higher percentage of their clears, 15-of-19, compared to Lees-McRae's 17-of-22.
The Bobcats honor their seven seniors prior to the game. Markey, Marks, White, MacConnell, Landon Young, Matt Ciotti and Dane Robinson all played their final game as a Bobcat Wednesday.