Balanced attack carries Panthers past Nor'easters
BIDDEFORD, Maine – Eight players scored for Plymouth State University on Saturday afternoon as the Panthers overcame as early deficit to top the University of New England, 16-5, in non-conference men's lacrosse action at the Big Blue Turf.
PSU (2-0) received four first-half goals from senior Mike Ventura (Columbia, N.J.) and got a 16-save performance out of junior goalie Jesse Kutz (Hopkinton, Mass.). Senior Shawn McEvoy (Spring, Texas), juniors Brett Miller (Windham, N.H.) and Chris Annunciata (Waltham, Mass.), and sophomores C.J. Frates (Merrimack, N.H.) and Nick Morello (North Billerica, Mass.) each scored twice for the visitors, and junior Zach Frank (Wakefield, Mass.) contributed a goal and four assists.
The loss was the first of the young season for Big Blue (2-1). Juniors Nick Gross (Kennebunk, Maine) and Pat Wolfe (Phippsburg, Maine), sophomores Eddie Burke (Windsor, Conn.) and Shamus Higginbottom (New Milford, Conn.), and first-year Sam Cloutier (Lewiston, Maine) all found the back of the cage for UNE.
After the home team struck for a pair of goals less than five minutes into the contest, the Panthers answered with the next five scores to get out in front. Ventura tallied two in the stretch.
Plymouth State upped the margin to five (8-3) with 5:47 left in the second period, only to see the Nor'easters respond 21 ticks later. However, Ventura pocketed his fourth marker with just 0:04 to play before intermission, restoring the five-goal difference (9-4).
The Panthers scored seven of the eight goals in the closing 30 minutes, including five that were on the man-advantage. For the game, PSU converted 8-of-9 man-up opportunities.
Junior Dan O'Gorman (Putnam Valley, N.Y.) scooped up 12 ground balls for Big Blue, and senior Nick McMahon (Westfield, Mass.) forced six PSU turnovers in the contest. First-year John Dusel (Wilbraham, Mass.) turned in six saves and allowed eight goals in nearly 36 minutes of relief work for starting goalie Jay Lentendre (Southington, Conn.).
Plymouth State is off for a week until heading to Castleton State College next Saturday (Mar. 16). The Nor'easters visit Bates College on Wednesday (5 p.m.)
(Courtesy of UNE Sports Information)
-- 30 --