KEENE, N.H. - The Keene State College men's lacrosse team used goals from 15 different players en route to a 24-10 victory over Plymouth State. With the win, the Owls captured their sixth straight LEC title and advance to the NCAA DIII National Tournament.
- Keene State: 11-5
- Plymouth State: 8-8
How It Happened
Keene State College came out of the gate on fire, when Connor Nolan scored the first two goals of the game unassisted. At the 8:15 mark, Bobby Carey finished off a Joe Nutting pass on a man-up chance to give KSC a 3-0 lead. Nolan completed his hat-trick just eight minutes into the contest, before Connor Delea finally got the Panthers on the board when he rattled the back of the net. A senior connection contributed to the fifth goal for the Owls, as Steve Hamel fed JJ Downey a gorgeous pass and Downey finished it off. That goal gave the Owls a 5-1 lead after one.
It was all Owls in the second quarter, as the hosts rang off seven straight goals. Carey scored his second, Dave Wiedenfeld rattled home his first off a Nutting pass and Haeden Finerty took a Chase Chamberlin feed and went the distance for a fantastic goal. Connor Nolan continued the run with his fourth of the day, before Joe Nutting finally grabbed his first goal off a Wiedenfeld helper. John Morgan became the seventh Owl to score when he took another Nutting feed and fired in a goal. With a 12-1 KSC lead, Plymouth State finally answered back when Paul Luongo took a good chance and beat the Keene State netminder. Nutting put Keene State right back on the board when he finished his second goal unassisted and Anthony Marcella scored his first goal. The two quick goals gave the Owls a commanding 14-2 lead at the half.
With the game already out of reach, the Owls continued their offensive dominance out of the locker room as Jordan Caito put away a Marcella feed. Corbin White, Connor Nolan and Justin Norris added to the onslaught when they tallied goals. Trailing 18-2, Chris Waterbury grabbed one back for the Panthers and eight seconds later Delea scored his second. At the 6:25 mark, Noah DeGoursey scored the goal of the game, when he fired a shot from 75 yards and skipped it into the empty net. Krantz Medeus then scored his first career goal to career goal off a rocket of a shot before Waterbury rang one back for the visitors. With a 20-5 lead, Caito snagged his second of the day unassisted, before Luongo answered right back for Plymouth. Connor Delea finished off his hat-trick at the 1:10 mark, before Connor Nolan capped off his fantastic afternoon with a double hat-trick.
Gabe Cormier became the 14th Owl to score when he opened the fourth quarter with a rocket from distance. With just five minutes to go, Plymouth State scored three straight goals as Casey Elkins, Jake Burns and Steve Tewksbury all finished off chances. Owen Keegan became the last Owl to score, as he put the exclamation point on top of a fantastic performance, and Keene State was crowned champions of the LEC with a 24-10 win.
Inside the Crease
- Connor Nolan was named the tournament's Most Outstanding Player, as he finished with six goals and one assist in the final.
- Dave Wiedenfeld broke KSC's single-season assist record with 39, as the junior had three helpers.
- Nutting finished with two goals and three assists, Carey and Caito also scored twice.
- Connor Delea led the Panthers with a hat-trick and Chris Waterbury had two goals and two assists.
- Chase Chamberlin picked up the win in netmaking five saves. Robert Porter had 10 saves in the loss.
- Matthew Lemke picked up 13 ground balls, and was dominant in the face off circle as KSC won 25-37 faceoffs.
- The Owls outshot Plymouth 72-31.
- Keene State advances to the NCAA DIII Tournament with the win. The Owls will find out their opponent Sunday, May 5 at 9:00 p.m. when the NCAA selections are announced.
- Plymouth State's season ends after today's loss.