A team whose season was derailed by excruciating one-goal losses was put back on track by an amazing performance by Mike MacDonald, a ridiculous fourth quarter by Eric Sanschagrin and ultimately some high heat from Kip Orban.
On a night not for the squeamish, Orban rocketed a shot past A.J. Fiore with 1:19 to go in overtime to lift Princeton past Cornell 14-13 in the Ivy League tournament semifinals. The game-winner came off a feed from MacDonald, who had a nine-point night, with seven goals and two assists.
The win came when a loss would have ended Princeton's hopes of the NCAA tournament, not to mention six days after Cornell hammered Princeton 17-11 in the last game of the regular season.
Now, with new life, Princeton plays Yale Sunday at 11 in the Ivy League final, and the winner will grab the league's automatic bid to the NCAA tournament.
STAT OF THE NIGHT - The game was tied 7-7 at the end of the third quarter. There were 13 more goals scored in the fourth quarter and overtime, including a wild, wild stretch in which the game went from 10-10 with less than four minutes to go to 13-13 three minutes later.
BONUS STAT - Princeton scored seven goals in the fourth quarter overtime on just nine shots.
WHAT THE BOX SCORE DOES TELL YOU - Eric Sanschagrin made 12 saves, two in the first half and 10 in the second half.
WHAT THE BOX SCORE DOESN'T TELL YOU - Sanschagrin made two great saves on the crease in one-on-one situations in the fourth quarter, robbing Steve Mock and Thomas Keith.
PLAY OF THE GAME - Kip Orban's game-winner came after there had been three turnovers in the overtime. MacDonald tried to roll dodge from behind the goal but was forced away. He shoveled a pass to Orban, who took one step and unleashed a missile into the back of the net to end it. Orban had three goals for the third straight game and now has 26 for the year.
PLAYER OF THE GAME - Mike MacDonald had seven goals and two assists, including four goals and an assist in the fourth quarter and then the assist on the game-winner. MacDonald now has 42 goals and 14 assists on the year.
NOTES - Princeton is 9-5 with four one-goal losses and two one-goal wins. The only other one-goal win was a 10-9 win over Yale on March 22 ... Tom Schreiber had a goal and four assists and now has 26 goals and 30 assists, tying MacDonald for the team lead with 56 points ... Mark Strabo did a great job on Cornell's Rob Pannell, who had five goals and four assists in the game last week and who had two goals and three assists but took 11 shots and had three turnovers.