PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Senior Maxim Fantl (West Hartford, Conn.) scored five goals and sophomore Michael Sullinger (Brookfield, Conn.) added three Sunday afternoon as Eastern Connecticut State University held off Plymouth State University, 12-8, in a Little East Conference men’s lacrosse game at Panther Field.
The Warriors picked up their fourth straight victory, all on the road, to improve their record to 7-2 overall and 2-0 in the Little East. PSU, playing its home opener after beginning the season with seven straight road games, suffered its fourth straight setback and dipped to 2-6 overall and 0-2 in conference play.
Fantl, who was the Little East Conference men’s soccer player of the year last fall, tallied a pair of first-quarter goals as the two teams traded scoring strikes in the first 10 minutes of the game. Sullinger notched his first of the game to give the visitors a 3-2 lead after one quarter, and Eastern out-scored PSU 2-1 in a low-scoring second frame to take a 5-3 advantage at halftime.
The Warriors pulled away in the third quarter with four unanswered goals, the first three by Fantl. Junior Grant Albertson (New Canaan, Conn.), Eastern’s leading scorer who had been quiet for nearly three quarters, scored his 25th of the season with one second left in the third to give the Warriors a 9-3 lead through three quarters.
PSU made a comeback attempt midway through the final stanza with three unanswered goals by senior Matt Johansmeyer (Shelburne Falls, Mass.), junior Andrew Eriksen (Beverly, Mass.) and senior Tim Hadley (New London, N.H./Kearsarge), but Eastern held off the Panther rally to earn the victory.
Eastern dominated the face-offs, winning all six in the first quarter, 9-of-10 in the first half, and 18-of-23 for the game. Junior Eric Vasil (Southington, Conn.) won 15 of his 16 face-offs and collected a game-high six ground balls to lead the way. The Warriors picked up 32 ground balls to 24 for the Panthers.
Freshman goalie Donald Berube (Tewksbury, Mass.) made nine saves for Eastern in the first 55 minutes, and classmate Drew Deane (Vernon, Conn.) came on for the final five minutes and recorded two saves. PSU junior Kevin Hayes (Beverly, Mass.) made 12 saves in the Panther goal.
PSU is back in action Wednesday at Panther Field with a 4:00 p.m. non-conference clash against Lasell Colllege. Eastern Conn. visits Trinity College for a non-conference match-up also Wednesday at 4:00 p.m.
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