UMass Men’s Lacrosse Falls At No. 6 North Carolina, 20-8
Mariano records seventh career hat trick in loss at Fetzer Field
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – The University of Massachusetts men’s lacrosse program faltered at No. 6 nationally ranked North Carolina in a 20-8 game on Fetzer Field in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Saturday afternoon. Nick Mariano led the Minutemen with his seventh career hat trick, earned on three goals.
Peter Lindley added three points through a pair of goals and an assist. Buddy Carr, Ryan Izzo and Dan Muller also scored for UMass, while Muller added one assist. Gianni Bianchin and Grant Consoletti helped out on two tallies apiece.
Joey Sankey and Jimmy Bitter were the leaders on attack for North Carolina. Sankey recorded seven points via four goals and three assists. Bitter split his six points evenly through three scores and as many helpers.
Mariano tied with freshman faceoff specialist Noah Rak for the team lead in groundballs as each Minuteman picked up four. Rak won 12 of the 20 faceoffs he took.
North Carolina put a goal on the scoreboard first with nine minutes, 37 seconds left in the first quarter, but Consoletti and Carr teamed to even things up at the 8:04 mark.
The Tar Heels responded with back-to-back scores before Muller ended the streak with a hard shot 15 yards out from the left post on a feed from Bianchin, but North Carolina replied on the other end for a 4-2 lead at the end of one quarter.
Three quick goals for North Carolina put the home side in front, 7-2, an even two minutes into the second stanza.
The Tar Heels added one more before Lindley dropped in a shot at the left post ahead of a Mariano tally from the right side, which pulled the Minutemen back within 7-4. Chas Robino found shooting space on the next possession, but Brian Balkam stopped his attempt, one of Balkam’s six saves on the day. Balkam was relieved of his goalie duties at halftime as Duncan Saunders and Kieran Burke rotated into net for the Tar Heels. Each played one frame as Burke had three saves against two goals allowed during the fourth quarter and Saunders stopped two shots while he also let two in.
Following a UNC timeout, Chad Tutton bounced one by Zach Oliveri to increase the Heels’ lead to 8-4 at the 5:14 mark. Luke Goldstock made it a five-goal North Carolina lead only 14 seconds later with a low shot before he added the second of his three tallies and the third straight for the home side at the four-minute mark.
North Carolina (3-0) notched two more quick strikes to push ahead, 12-4 less than three minutes into the third quarter and the Minutemen were unable to cut it closer than within seven goals the remainder of the way.
The Minutemen return to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to face regional rival and No. 11/12 nationally ranked Harvard at Soldiers Field Soccer and Lacrosse Stadium in Cambridge at 3 p.m. on Feb. 21.
Colgate Edges Vermont in Men’s Lacrosse Home Opener
BURLINGTON, Vt. – Junior James Barlow tallied a career-high four goals, but Vermont dropped its home opener to Colgate by a score of 10-8 on Saturday at Virtue Field. The Raiders improve to 2-0 on the year, while Vermont falls to 0-2.
Barlow led all goal scorers in the contest with four tallies and now tops the Catamounts with seven goals on the season. Four other Catamounts registered a goal apiece in the contest, including Karl Weller and Ian MacKay, who notched two points (1 g, 1 ast) each. Cam Milligan led Vermont with a pair of assists on the day.
Matt Clarkson and Anthony Abbadessa powered Colgate to victory, combining for 11 points in the contest. Clarkson registered six points on a goal and five assists, while Abbadessa notched three goals and two helpers.
Bandon Burke stopped seven shots to earn his second win in net for the Raiders. Justin Rosenberg made a season-high 13 saves in goal for Vermont, including 10 in the first half.
Vermont dominated the first period, outscoring the Raiders 4-1 in the frame. Barlow tallied two of his four goals in the quarter, and Vermont notched a pair of scores in the final three minutes to take a three-goal advantage into the second stanza.
Colgate mounted a comeback in the second quarter as they outscored the Catamounts 4-0 behind goals from four different scorers. The Raiders tallied two of their goals in the last two and a half minutes of the quarter, and took a slight advantage (5-4) into halftime.
Goals from Chase Wittich and Abbadessa put Colgate up 7-4 early in the third, but Vermont answered back as Dyson White and Barlow netted a goal each to bring UVM back within one, 7-6, at the 10:09 mark of the period.
Following a pair of goals by Colgate, Barlow responded with his final tally of the contest with just 45 seconds left in the third quarter. The goal pulled Vermont back to within two, 9-7.
In the final period of play, Cameron Williams put the Raiders up by three with his second goal of the game at the 7:45 mark. With less than three minutes remaining, UVM capitalized on its man-advantage as Nick Bartlett found the back of the net for his first goal of the season and closed the gap to 10-8.
Colgate was able to hold off Vermont for the remaining two-plus minutes to earn its second win of the season.
UVM owned a 37-33 shot advantage and won 15 of 21 faceoffs on the afternoon. Luc LeBlanc was key for the Catamounts in the X, as the sophomore won 71% of his faceoff attempts. LeBlanc registered nine ground balls and Ben Cox added six to lead UVM.
Vermont hits the road to take on Providence on Saturday (Feb. 21) at 1 p.m.
Neubauer Nets Four, Fairfield University Men’s Lacrosse Edged by Holy Cross on Opening Day at Rafferty Stadium
Tristan Sperry scores first two goals in Rafferty Stadium history
FAIRFIELD, Conn. – The Fairfield University men’s lacrosse team took the field at Rafferty Stadium for the first time on Saturday afternoon, opening the 2015 season against visiting Holy Cross. Before an Opening Day crowd of 2,365, the Stags were clipped by the Crusaders, 10-9, on a goal with just 3:40 to play.
TJ Neubauer scored a game-high four goals for Fairfield (0-1), including three in the second half. The first two goals in Rafferty Stadium history went to Tristan Sperry, who recorded a first-half hat trick for the Stags in addition to two assists. Colin McLinden and Dave Fleming also found the back of the net, with helpers dished out by Drew Federico, Drew Murray and Charlie Schnider.
On the other half of the field, Bryan Barry scooped up four ground balls, and Max Buchanan registered a pair of ground balls and a pair of caused turnovers. Brad Nordstrom made nine saves between the posts in his collegiate debut.
Louis DiGiacomo and Will Fox share duties in the faceoff ‘X’ and each posted an above-.500 mark. DiGiacomo went 8-for-14 on faceoffs, and Fox was 5-for-9 in his first game with the Stags.
Holy Cross (1-0) was led by five points from Sean Wilkinson, who scored three goals and distributed two assists. Logan LeBlond and Marc Buermann each scored twice for the Crusaders. Michael Ortlieb made 13 saves, including five in the fourth quarter, in the winning effort for the visitors.
The first goal at Rafferty Stadium came just 72 seconds into the contest when Sperry buried an unassisted marker to stake the Stags to a 1-0 lead. The senior attackman struck again at the 11:17 mark of the opening frame to double the advantage to 2-0.
The Stags extended the lead further when Federico connected with a streaking Fleming for a one-timer that staked Fairfield to a 3-0 edge midway through the opening quarter. Holy Cross would get on the board on Wilkinson’s first goal of the day, but Fairfield rebuilt a three-goal margin as McLinden struck at the 5:43 mark with what proved to be the final tally of the opening frame.
It was Wilkinson again who got the Crusaders’ offense going with a goal to cut into the lead, but the Stags again responded. This time it was a two-goal spurt as Sperry completed his hat trick and then connected with fellow co-captain Neubauer, who scored his first goal of the season to stretch the edge to 6-2. The Crusaders answered with the final goal of the second frame at the 7:36 mark, as both defenses locked down in the quarter. The first half expired with the Stags doubling-up Holy Cross by a 6-3 count.
In the third quarter, Wilkinson and LeBlond each buried a goal in the opening minutes to trim the Stags’ lead to 6-5. At that point, Fairfield capitalized on a man-up situation as Neubauer turned a feed from Schnider into his second goal of the day. After Buermann struck for the Crusaders, another man-up opportunity led to another Stags’ marker. Once again it was Neubauer finishing the play on the first assist of Murray’s career and extending the Fairfield advantage to 8-6.
However, the Crusaders struck twice in the final ticks of the quarter as Buermann at 1:38 and LeBlond with just five seconds remaining knotted the score at 8-8 heading into the fourth quarter.
Neubauer continued to come through in the clutch for the Stags, as he broke the deadlock at the 13:40 mark of the final quarter. This time, it was Sperry helping out on the goal to complete his five-point performance on Opening Day.
The newly-built 9-8 cushion, however, marked the last goal that the Stags would score on the day. A Clay Haarmann goal at the 6:47 mark tied the score, and Terry McKenna’s tally with 3:40 to play gave the Crusaders their first and only lead of the contest at 10-9.
Nordstrom made a pair of key saves down the stretch to keep the Stags within striking distance, but Fairfield was unable to gain another possession on the offensive end as the final seconds expired.
The Stags will now embark on a five-game road swing – the longest stretch of true road games in program history. The trip begins on Tuesday, Feb. 17 with a visit to Providence and will also feature non-conference contests at Manhattan, Stony Brook, Yale and Bucknell. The Stags return to the turf of Rafferty Stadium on Saturday, March 14 for a clash with Colgate.