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Patch leads PSU Men’s Lacrosse past Castleton

Panthers record first victory of season

            CASTLETON, N.H. – Junior Stephen Patch scored with just 25 seconds remaining in regulation play Saturday afternoon, lifting Plymouth State University to an 11-10 win over Castleton State College in non-conference men's lacrosse action at Spartan Stadium.

            After a Panther timeout with just over a minute left in regulation, junior Mike Ventura had a good look at a shot with 44 seconds left but it went just wide of the goalmouth. On the ensuing possession, Patch caught the ball in the right flank, penetrated past a Spartan defender and deposited his third goal of the game just inside the far post.

            A faceoff infraction gave Plymouth State possession with 20 seconds remaining, and the Panthers salted the game away.

            Patch, who also scored the game-winning goal at Castleton last season with two seconds remaining in a 9-8 PSU victory, led the Panther attack with a three-goal, two-assist performance, while junior Ty Long followed with two goals and an assist. Sophomore Chris Annunciata added a pair of goals to round out the Panther leaders.

            Freshman Zach Davidson led Castleton with a career-high five goals and an assist. Will Stuhler was the only other Spartan to record a multiple-point effort.

            The Panthers raced out to a 3-0 lead just seven-and-a-half minutes into the contest, as Patch and Long sandwiched Shawn McEvoy's second goal of the season.

            Castleton answered with a 6-1 run that spanned 15 minutes, and was spearheaded by two goals and an assist from Davidson. A brilliant individual effort from Alex Brands (Woodstock, Vt.) capped the surge, forcing a Panther timeout. Phil Patterson (Essex, Vt.) scored to make it 5-4, and on the ensuing face-off Brands raced in with his long pole, scooped up the ground ball and raced into the attacking third where tallied his first goal of the season.

            During the timeout, Castleton was whistled for a deep pocket, and Plymouth State capitalized with a man-up goal by Ventura just 30 seconds later. Davidson answered with a goal just 15 seconds before halftime to give Castleton a 7-5 lead heading into the break.

            The Panthers tied the contest with a pair of unanswered goals in the third period before A.J. Groot pushed the Spartans ahead 8-7 with eight seconds left in the period. Davidson upped the Spartan advantage to 9-7 with his fourth goal of the afternoon just 1:06 into the final stanza, but the Panthers outscored their hosts 4-1 over the final 8:30 of action to earn the win.

            The game was even throughout, with both teams rifling off 33 shots, and Castleton holding a slight 37-34 advantage in ground balls. The Spartans turned the ball over 21 times to Plymouth's 20, and the Panthers held a 12-11 edge in face-offs won.

            Plymouth State senior goalie Jack Tyo made 11 saves to earn the win, while freshman Eric Horsfield stopped 13 shots in the loss.

            PSU travels to Massachusetts Maritime on Tuesday at 4 pm. Castleton opens its North Atlantic Conference slate on Saturday at 12 pm versus Johnson State. 

 (Courtesy of Castleton Sports Information) 

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