Springfield, Mass. - May 3, 2017 - The Springfield College men's lacrosse team closed out the game on an 11-4 run to defeat Babson College by a score of 12-8 in the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Men's Lacrosse Championship Semifinals on Stagg Field.
Springfield is now 11-4 on the season and will host Clark at 5 pm on Saturday evening for the conference title and automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Championship. The Beavers season comes to a close with an 8-8 mark.
Jack Vail (Franklin, Mass.) led all players with six points on three goals and three assists, while Jake Reynolds (Scituate, Mass.) put up a 19-save performance between the pipes. Matthew LaCroix (Westfield, Mass.) picked up eight ground balls and Anthony Zabielski (Gansevoort, N.Y.) totaled two goals and an assist.
Owen Allen (Franklin, Mass.) netted three first-half goals for the visitors, and both Alex Brown (Little Compton, R.I.) and Connor Flaherty (Honeyoye Falls, N.Y.) produced two goals and an assist. Connor Maloney (Hopkinton, Mass.) scooped up a team-best seven ground balls and Christopher Aranalde (Rockville Centre, N.Y.) made seven stops in the loss.
Babson finished the game with a 45-35 edge in shots, while each team picked up 29 ground balls. Babson won 13 of the 23 face-offs, but the Pride held the Beavers to 0-for-4 on man-up opportunities.
Flaherty opened up the scoring with 6:04 left in the first quarter when he buried a lefty shot just inside the post, only to have Vail rip a low shot through traffic with 4:47 on the clock. Babson closed out the quarter with strikes from Flaherty and Allen before Allen pushed the lead to 4-1 with 12:28 remaining in the second period when connected from 15 yards out.
Springfield answered back with four-unanswered goals, with Ty Daugstrup (Rocky River, Ohio) starting the surge slicing through Babson's defense at 9:35, before Zabielski made an awesome heads up play, snagging a loose ball along the crease and slipping a pass to Vail to stuff one home on the doorstep at 7:04. Zabielski then knotted the game up, elevating for a high pass and sneaking a shot home to knot things to play just 1:10 later.
Springfield took its first lead of the game when Lucas Habich (Little Silver, N.J.) blistered a shot into the left corner with 3:23 on the clock, but Allen wrapped around the cage with 1:33 remaining for this third of the night to send the games into the half deadlocked at five.
Brendan Dooley (Setauket, N.Y.) wasted little time putting the hosts on top just 32 seconds in the half when he got free down the right alley, however the Beavers would respond with Brown's second of the game at the 11:52 mark on a marker from 10 yards out.
The Pride went ahead for good on when Scott Rogers (Acton, Mass.) got free along the crease at 8:45 before goals from Duncan Preston (South Portland, Maine) and Phillip Dumont (Watertown, Mass.) pushed the Pride's cushion to 9-6 with 5:12 left in the third. After Brendan Duffy (Duxbury, Mass.) scored in transition for the Beavers to make it two-goal contest heading into the fourth, Zabielski finished a great look from Dumont 49 seconds into the final period. Brown would score the visitors final goal with 8:39 left in regulation, but Springfield would benefit from man-up goals from Habich and Vail in the final 6:49, with Habich providing a highlight reel behind-the-back strike, to advance to the title game.