Lehigh men's senior lacrosse attacker Quinn Armstrong turns the corner against Boston graduate defender Patrick Morrison in a Patriot League game on Saturday, April 20, 2024, at Frank Banko Field. Lehigh won in overtime, 13-12. (Luke Kaiser/B&W Staff)

‘Captain’ Cole and Lehigh men’s lacrosse attackers step up and in


In 2023, the Lehigh men’s lacrosse team scored 13.73 goals per game in the Patriot League, just 0.06 behind the leading Boston University. 

Subtract the team’s second through fifth leading scorers due to graduation, and suddenly the goals dried up. 

This season, the Mountain Hawk’s 10.09 goals per game in the Patriot League ranks second to last in the nine-team conference. 

With only four goals at halftime of Saturday’s game against Boston University, it seemed as if Lehigh’s offensive woes would continue. 

But with five of the game’s final six goals, including the overtime winner by junior Dakota Eierman, Lehigh’s attack looked reminiscent of the 2023 squad in their 13-12 win

The lone mainstay for Lehigh offensively between both seasons is junior Scott Cole, who led the team scoring in both seasons.

Lehigh senior attacker Quinn Armstrong passes the ball to senior attacker Scott Cole during a game against Boston University on Saturday, April 20, 2024, at Frank Banko Field. Lehigh won in overtime, 13-12. (Archer Benedict/B&W Staff)

“It’s no secret to anybody that production has been a lot slower,” said Cole, whose game-tying goal with 21 seconds left set the stage for a dramatic comeback. “But we’ve been right in every single game we played in. We are a very tough and resilient team, and I think that we’re really starting to put it all together when it matters.”

Cole, who recorded 49 goals and 76 points in 2023, paces Lehigh with 29 goals and 35 points so far this season.

Cole said after losing multiple key players and now having a young team, they were prone to unforced turnovers earlier in the season. Now that the familiarity with each other’s tendencies are increasing, the Mountain Hawks are starting to put things together. 

Even after an emotional come-from-behind win, he restated the importance of his role as a captain to keep everyone humble.

So when asked to describe Cole as a leader, Eierman laughed and said, “He’s literally Captain America.”

Cole’s superhuman performance on Saturday featured four goals, all coming in the second half. 

Saturday’s 13-goal outing came at a much needed time. Not only did the win signify a breakthrough offensively, it also had significant playoff implications. Entering play on Saturday, the Hawks were one of six teams tied for first place in the Patriot League. 

Lehigh had only scored 13 goals one other time this season: on Feb. 17 in a 17-13 loss to Cornell University.

Eierman believes the team had to find its offensive identity early on. Now, he’s seeing reasons for optimism.

We came in in the beginning, and we kind of bounced around certain lines and certain spots at attack,” Eierman said. “We’ve really just tried to figure out the right fit. But I think we’re really starting to figure it out now, and I think it’s a testament to our work throughout the week and throughout the season. “

Prior to Saturday, they did it with a different style of play. Lehigh has surrendered the fewest goals in the Patriot League (118) and has the second highest save percentage (.537). 

Whether Lehigh wins by high-flying offense or shutdown defense, at this point of the season wins are all that matters. Lehigh coach Will Scudder said the most important games are Patriot League games after his team’s overtime win on Saturday. 

Even with an up-and-down season, Scudder and the Mountain Hawks still find themselves tied for first place in the conference. 

“I think it was just a good test for guys to be resilient,” Scudder said. “I think we stepped up, we were down at one point, and talked about staying the course.

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