BOSTON, Mass. - Junior midfielder Phil Pittorino (Acton, Mass.) scored five goals Tuesday to lead the University of Massachusetts Boston over Plymouth State College, 14-6, in the first round of the Little East Conference Men's Lacrosse Tournament at the Clark Athletic Center.
The third-seeded Beacons improve to 8-5 on the year and will take on the tournament's top seed and defending champion, Eastern Connecticut State University, on Friday, May 3, at 3 p.m. in Willimantic, Conn. The Panthers conclude their season at 4-10.
UMass Boston, which was without the LEC's second-leading scorer, injured junior Josh Stolp (Hingham, Mass.), jumped out to a 6-0 lead as senior middies Dan Gardner (Newton, Mass.) and Jay Chisholm (Lexington, Mass.) each tallied a pair of goals.
PSC senior Eric Gilbert (South Portland, Maine) scored on a feed from junior Kevin Finnerty (Bayshore, N.Y.) to put the Panthers on the board at 11:15 of the second quarter, but Pittorino matched the score nearly three minutes later to give the Beacons a 7-1 advantage at the intermission.
After Pittorino struck again for UMB with just 14 seconds gone in the third quarter, the Panthers answered with three straight goals, two by freshman Pat O'Malley (South Windsor, Conn.) and one by junior Ken McGuire (Wayland, Mass.), to make it an 8-4 game. The Beacons came alive with three more goals of their own to take an insurmountable 11-4 lead after three quarters.
Senior Andrew Quesnel (Middlebury, Vt.) and sophomore Jake Frerk (Beverly, Mass.) rounded out the scoring for PSC with fourth-quarter goals. Quesnel finishes the season as the team's leading scorer (28 goals, 15 assists, 43 points), and completes his four-year career with 98 career points (62 goals, 36 assists).
O'Malley led Plymouth State in the game with four points on a pair of goals and two assists, while McGuire tallied a goal and an assist.
Junior goalie Jonny Walker (Sharon, MA) stopped 10 shots and allowed four goals in 45 minutes of action for the Beacons and senior Jason Gardner (Lynnfield, MA) made five saves in 15 minutes of relief. Junior Dan Egan (Cambridge, Mass.) turned away 11 shots for Plymouth State.
(Courtesy UMass Boston Sports Information)