Pichel, Croatti, LaRivienere pace Panthers to LEC win
NORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. – Two big quarters for the Plymouth State University men's lacrosse team proved to be the difference in the end Sunday afternoon as the Panthers defeated UMass Dartmouth, 9-6, to open Little East Conference play. The Corsairs fall to 2-6 and 0-1 in the LEC, while Plymouth State improves to 2-5 overall and 1-0 in conference play.
Senior Phil Pichel (Hopkinton, Mass.) picked up four points on the day to lead the Panthers, and junior Alex Croatti (Brunswick, Maine) chipped in with two goals. Junior Jayson LaRiviere (Chelmsford, Mass.) picked up the win in the Panther goal, making 11 saves on the afternoon.
Senior Bo Prozinski (Ashland, Mass.) and sophomore DJ Miller (Ashland, Mass.) led the way for the Corsairs' offense, as both of them tallied three points on the afternoon.
UMass Dartmouth got on the board first, wasting little time. In only 45 seconds, senior Joey Bouthillette (Northbridge, Mass.) found the back of the net. The lead would not last long though, as the Panthers would rattle off four straight goals, giving them a 4-1 cushion halfway through the second period. The stretch of four goals saw scores from Croatti, Pichel, junior Mac Tetreault (New Durham, N.H.), and sophomore Cam Cormier (Auburn, Maine).
Corsair senior Tyler Prentice (Chelmsford, Mass.) cut the Plymouth State lead in half to close the half, scoring 26 seconds after Cormier's goal, to make it 4-2.
The third quarter started with a flurry of goals. Pichel found the back of the net at the 1:51 marker. Miller answered right back with a goal of his own, with only three ticks coming off the clock. Freshman Taylor Farrow (Amherst, N.H.) would then collect his first collegiate goal with 1:59 coming off the clock, giving Plymouth State a 6-3 lead. Farrow's goal would spark a 4-0 run by the Panthers to close out the third quarter, with goals coming from junior Colin Claflin (Pembroke, Mass.), Croatti, and junior Pete Allen (Newbury, N.H.).
The Panthers' smothering defense on Prozinski would let up in the final quarter, as the Corsairs' leading scorer tried to close the gap by tallying two goals in the frame. Senior captain Alex Lucas (Brookfield, Mass.) chipped in with a goal of his own to bring UMass Dartmouth within three, but the Plymouth State lead would hold through blizzard conditions at the end.
UMass Dartmouth split time between junior Matt LaFond (Bridgewater, Mass.) who got the starting nod and made six saves of 45 minutes of work, and classmate Scott Spangenberg (Dover, Mass.), who closed out the final quarter for the Corsairs making a pair of saves.
After seven games on the road to open the season, the Panthers are scheduled to host UMass Boston in the home opener next Saturday, Apr. 9, at 12 noon on Currier Field. UMass Dartmouth will return to action for another home contest when they host Babson on Wednesday at 4 p.m.
(Courtesy of UMass Dartmouth Sports Information)
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