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Air Force defeats Loyola Marymount, 10-9, advances to WWPA title game

The Air Force Falcons defeated LMU and are now one game away from winning their third-ever WWPA conference title.

No. 3 seeded Air Force upended No. 2 seed Loyola Marymount Saturday afternoon, in a close 10-9 game. The Falcons were led by senior Brad Rajchel who scored four goals, including the game winner at 3:31 left in the game.

LMU starting the game strong by scoring the first two goals of the match, and then led 3-1 part way through the first quarter. The Air Force offense came alive to score the next three goals to take a 4-3 lead, and at the end of the first period the game was knotted at four goals apiece.

Air Force started to pull away in the second quarter by taking a two-goal lead, but LMU was able to get a shot past Falcons goalie Mike Fish, to make it 6-5 at the half.

The defense ratcheted up their game in the second half, and in the third quarter the Falcons rattled off two goals to LMU's one, and that made it a tie game at eight heading into the final frame.

Each team scored a goal early in the quarter to tie the game at nine, but Rajchel score his four goal of the game in the quarter. That goal proved to be the game winner, and the Falcons defense held off the Lions to earn a big to the WWPA title game against top seeded UC San Diego, Sunday afternoon.

The power play chances was the difference in this game, Air Force did not have many chances but they converted their one penalty shot, and converted 4 of 6 opportunities. The Falcons defense was able to limit LMU to just 2 of 11 power play goals, and that was the main reason that Air Force was able to win. Fish also had a good game in the cage with 13 blocked shots.

The win over LMU ended an 18-game losing streak for Air Force.