Panthers post third straight win, move to 2-0 in LEC
PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Junior Chris Annunciata (Waltham, Mass.) scored a team-high three goals and classmate Zach Frank (Wakefield, Mass.) added two goals and three assists Saturday afternoon as Plymouth State University defeated Salem State University, 13-8, in a Little East Conference men's lacrosse game at Panther Field.
The Panthers posted their third straight victory, improving to 5-1 overall and remaining undefeated (2-0) in conference play, while the Vikings dropped to 6-3 overall and 0-2 in the Little East.
PSU outscored Salem State 8-1 over a 16-minute span from late in the second quarter to the final minute of the third to pull away to the win. The Vikings led 4-3 with less than two minutes remaining in the second, but PSU scored twice to take a 5-4 lead into the intermission, and outscored the visitors 6-1 in the third frame to open up an 11-5 margin.
Senior Mike Ventura (Columbia, N.J.) and sophomore Nick Morello (North Billerica, Mass.) added two goals apiece for Plymouth State, and senior Shawn McEvoy (Spring, Texas) chipped in with a goal and an assist. Junior Jesse Kutz (Hopkinton, Mass.) made nine saves in goal to record the victory.
The Vikings were led by freshman Ben Melaugh (Billerica, Mass.), who tallied four goals and an assist and a team-high six ground balls, and junior A.J. Robertson (Ipswich, Mass.), who scored three goals. Freshman Dylan Svenson (Billerica, Mass.) made eight saves in the Viking goal but suffered the loss.
The teams traded goals a minute and a half apart midway through the opening frame, Morello scoring for PSU and Robertson answering for SSU. It stayed a one-goal game throughout the second quarter, and Annunciata's first of the game with 37 seconds remaining gave the Panthers a 5-4 lead at the break.
Senior Ty Long (Dover, N.H.), sophomore Andrew Finocchio (Wakefield, Mass.) and Ventura tallied the first three goals of the third quarter for PSU. Melaugh recorded his second of the game for Salem but sophomore C.J. Frates (Merrimack, N.H.) answered for the Panthers and Annunciata tossed in the next two to make it 11-5 and PSU never looked back.
Plymouth State returns to action Wednesday with a 7:00 p.m. face-off at non-conference foe Clark University, while Salem State returns home to host MIT Tuesday in a non-league tilt (8:00 p.m.)
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