DAVENPORT, Fla. - Led by four goals and one assist from senior Hunter Arnold, the Keene State men's lacrosse team rallied from a 10-7 halftime deficit to defeat Hamilton 15-14 on Wednesday evening at the Northeast Regional Park. The Owls outscored the Continentals 4-1 in the final quarter to give Keene State a 2-0 record out of Florida in 2018.
- Keene State: 3-2
- Hamilton: 1-3
How It Happened
Hamilton took the lead in the opening minutes with two quick goals, before senior Jon Nassif netted the first goal for Keene State off a feed from Paul Beling, followed by an unassisted strike from sophomore Anthony Marcella to even the score at two. The Continentals fired back to take the lead at the 5:06 mark, but Arnold connected with Marcella, who notched his second tally of the quarter. Hamilton scored the final two goals of the stanza to hold a 5-3 advantage at the end of the first 15 minutes.
Keene State rattled off four straight goals to start the second quarter, capped off by a strike from Beling with 6:44 remaining, to push score to 7-5 in favor of KSC, yet the Continentals answered with a 5-0 run to finish the second stanza, wrapping up the quarter and going into the break holding a 10-7 lead over the Owls.
It was another quarter of runs for both team, as Keene State scored three consecutive goals to even the score at 10 as Arnold netted two and junior Mitch Hale added one. However, Hamilton responded with three goals to take a 13-10 lead with 2:57 remaining on the clock, before sophomore Dave Wiedenfeld cut the Owls deficit to two with a goal with 1:34 left in the third quarter.
With 13:53 remaining in the contest, Henry Hill scored for the Continentals to bring their lead back up to three, but Keene State did not back down, as the Owls rallied to score the final four goals of the quarter to win the game. Nolan scored first at the 12:32 to go mark, followed by an unassisted goal from Beling in a man-up opportunity. At 4:57 remaining in the game, Arnold found the back of the net to even the score at 14 and Nolan fired off the game-winning goal with 4:16 on the clock to give Keene State the one-point advantage. Hamilton aimed to send the game into overtime in the final minute, but senior Mathew Howe made a save in net with 30 seconds remaining to keep KSC on top.
Inside the Crease
- For the Owls, Arnold posted a team-high five points and picked up four ground balls, while Nassif, Marcella, Nolan, Wiedenfeld, and Beling all chipped in two goals for the win. Junior Steve Hamel grabbed a team-high five ground balls and caused three turnovers.
- For the Continentals, Chris Conley led all players with seven points on five goals and two assists, while Eric Zurmuehle picked up a game-high 12 ground balls and won 19-of-32 face-offs. Matt Greene recorded four ground balls and four caused turnovers.
- Howe played all 60 minutes between the pipes and registered 15 saves in the win, as Kyle Gately recorded 12 stops in the loss.
- Hamilton held a slight edge in shots, 44-43, and in ground balls, 41-31, over Keene State, as the Owls went 18-of-20 in clears and 2-for-3 in man-up opportunities.
- Keene State will take on another New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) opponent next week, as the Owls travel to Bates on Tuesday, March 20th for a 5:00 p.m. non-conference contest.
- Hamilton will return to NESCAC play against Bowdoin on Saturday, March 17th at 12:00 p.m. in Davenport, Fla.