Springfield, Mass. - April 17, 2019 - In a rematch of last year's New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Championship, the Springfield College men's lacrosse team earned a hard-fought 9-8 win over Coast Guard on Wednesday night on Stagg Field.
The victory improves Springfield to 6-8, 3-1 in conference play, while the Bears fell to 10-3, 3-1 and had its school record eight-game winning streak snapped.
The Pride was outshot 51-29 in the contest, but committed just 12 turnovers and won the ground-ball battle, 31-30. Cole Finerty (Kensington, N.H.) made 19 saves in goal as he put together another incredible performance, while six players at at least three points on the offensive end. Joe Hawley (Pouslbo, Wash.) handed out three assists, Zachary Schuette (Ballston Spa, N.Y.) and Cole Pecora (North Haven, Conn.) each had a goal and two helpers, and Lucas Habich (Little Silver, N.J.), Jack Vail (Franklin, Mass.) and Cameron Glover (Brunswick, Maine) each scored twice and registered an assist. Joseph Cameron (Stoneham, Mass.) had a team-best six grounds balls, and Kyle Murakami (South Burlington, Vt.) added five ground balls and a pair of caused turnovers.
For the visitors, Anthony Wyler had a goal and two assists, Colin Cashin won 11-of-20 at the face-off "X to to go along with eight ground balls, and Trey Johnson made 11 stops in net.
The Pride got off to a fantastic start as Habich went behind his back on the run for a goal just 52 seconds into the game, only to have the Bears respond with a goal from Jack Pope at 9:57. Springfield then strung together three-consecutive goals in a 1:49 span to take a 4-1 lead. Glover started the burst with a man-up goal at 7:56 before Zane Smallidge (Niantic, Conn.) blistered a shot into the top shelf in transition 56 seconds later, and Schuette bounced home a shot at 6:07, giving Springfield four goals on their first seven shots.
The hosts pushed their advantage to 5-1 with 9:44 left in the second quarter when Vail just beat the shot clock on a bid from the right wing. However, Coast Guard would answer with three-straight goals, including a pair from Benner Geurtsen, to pull with 5-4 with 3:01 to play. Pecora would then give Springfield a 6-4 edge at the break as he shook his defender and finished from 15 yards out with 1:08 on the clock.
Glover tucked a shot under the crossbar for Springfield's seventh goal of the game midway through the third quarter, and the scoring would pick up in the final 3:45, with Coast Guard's Matty Johnson and Ian Logan sandwiching an inside finish along the crease by Habich to make it a 8-6 game entering the fourth.
After Vail beat Johnson between his legs just 1:07 into the fourth to push the Pride's lead to 9-6, the Bears scored two goals just 24 seconds apart to make it a one-goal contest with 12:20 left in regulation. Springfield, which committed four turnovers in the stanza, held off continuous pressure as the Bears outshot the Pride 13-5 in the quarter. Finerty came up big down the stretch, including the game-sealing save with 45 seconds left to seal the win.
Springfield will end the regular season with three conference games on the road, starting with MIT on Saturday at 1 pm.
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