The No. 4 nationally-ranked GCC men's lacrosse team is headed to the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Final Four after an 11-9 win over visiting Suffolk County Community College in the opening round of the tournament on Saturday.
Suffolk took the early lead in the first ever national tournament game hosted by GCC. The Sharks scored at the 8:05 mark to take a 1-0 advantage.
With the game tied at two early in the second, Drew Horton scored to make it 3-2 Genesee, but Suffolk answered quickly to tie it up at three.
Alex Henry went 50 yards on his own to score unassisted at the 5:42 mark of the second and John Jimmerson extended the Cougars' lead to 5-3 with a goal 41-seconds later. GCC took the two-goal lead into the half.
Suffolk cut the lead to one with a man-up goal early in the second half before GCC scored three straight to take an 8-4 lead. Jimmy Smith scored twice and Colton Reformat added one. The Sharks added another man-up goal late in the third to cut the lead to 8-5 at the end of three.
Suffolk scored back-to-back to start the fourth and GCC's lead was down to one at 8-7. Spruce ended the SCCC scoring stretch with his second goal of the game at the 11:55 mark and Jorgenson followed with his second goal of the game just nine seconds after to make it 10-7 Genesee.
After Suffolk again cut the GCC lead down to one with back-to-back goals, Nick Lavoy added an insurance goal with 49-seconds remaining, and the Cougars held on for the two-goal victory.
Mike Caternolo was eight for 10 on face-offs and also had six ground balls.
Jorgenson was four of six on face-offs and collected four ground balls and Henry led the Cougars with three takeaways.
Corey Luty made 10 saves in net to earn the victory, which was the first national tournament win for GCC in school history.
Genesee (12-4) will advance to its fourth NJCAA Final Four in school history and take on No. 1 Onondaga CC (15-0) on Sat., May 9 in Baltimore, MD at 1 p.m.