PSU Men’s Lax edges UMD in regular season finale

Panthers on the road Tuesday for LEC play-offs

            PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Sophomore Chris Annunciata scored three goals and assisted on two others Saturday afternoon to lead Plymouth State University to a 13-10 victory over the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth in the Little East Conference men's lacrosse regular season finale for both schools at Panther Field.

            Annunciata had a goal and two assists during a five-goal PSU stretch late in the third quarter and early in the fourth that turned a 7-6 UMD lead into an 11-7 Panther advantage.  The Corsairs pulled to within two goals twice in the final five minutes, but the home team held on for the win.

            Both teams complete the regular season with identical records of 9-5 overall and 3-4 in the LEC, and wind up in a three-way tie for fourth place in the conference.  Plymouth State, which stopped a four-game losing skid, will be the sixth seed in next week's LEC Tournament, and will be on the road for Tuesday's first-round game.  UMD will be the fourth seed and will host a first-round game on Tuesday.

            Freshmen Nick Morello and Ross Murphy also tallied three goals apiece for PSU, and sophomore Zach Frank contributed a goal and two assists.  Junior Sean Allen collected a team-high five ground balls, and sophomore Scott Giusti won 15-of-27 face-offs for the Panthers.

            Sophomore Adam Niden and freshman Riley Baxter notched three goals and one assist each for the Corsairs, and Niden picked up a team-high five ground balls.

            PSU had the upper hand early on, and held a 4-2 lead after one quarter.  The Corsairs scored the first three goals of the second period, two by Niden, to take a 5-4 advantage.  Morello added his third of the game with 10 seconds left in the quarter, tying the game at 5-5 at the intermission.

            Annunciata scored the first goal of the third frame for PSU, but UMD answered with two goals in less than a minute to regain the lead. Annunciata scored with 23 second left in the third quarter, and Frank, Murphy, and juniors Mike Ventura and Ty Long tallied consecutive strikes as PSU pulled away to an 11-7 lead.

            The home team finished with a narrow 35-34 advantage in shots and a 35-33 margin in ground balls. Both goalies, PSU senior Jack Tyo and UMD sophomore Nick Thayer finished with 11 saves. 

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