MEDFORD, Mass. - No. 3 Tufts used a strong fourth quarter to power past the Keene State men's lacrosse program, as the Jumbos defeated the Owls, 24-16, on Wednesday afternoon at Bello Field.
- Keene State: 1-2, 0-0 LEC
- Tufts: 2-0, 0-0 LEC
How It Happened
Senior Rob Hart put forth a strong offensive effort with a team-high five goals, followed by a three-goal performance from senior Bryan Rotatori, senior Tyler Reilly, and junior Frank Bacarella. Rotatori added three assists, while junior Hunter Arnold registered one goal and dished out a game-high five assists.
The Jumbos saw 15 different players find the back of the net, led by Michael Mattson and John Cordrey with three goals apiece, as Cordrey added two assists.
Keene State held a 4-3 advantage at the end of the first stanza, after the Owls scored the first two goals of the contest. After the first break, Tufts scored the opening goal, before Keene State fired off with three consecutive goals from Arnold, Bacarella, and Rotatori to gain a three-point lead, 7-4, with 9:41 remaining. The Jumbos fired back offensively with a 4-0 run to grab a one-point advantage, before Hart tied it up at eight with just over five minutes remaining. Tufts responded with three straight goals to close out the half up, 11-8.
After 19 total goals were scored in the first half, the offenses slowed down a bit in the third with each team scoring twice. Cordrey had a goal and an assist in the third for Tufts while junior Hunter Arnold set up a pair of Keene goals. Heading into the fourth, the Owls were still in the game down 13-10.
The Jumbos blew it open with a remarkable 11-goal fourth period. Keene State added six as 17 were scored in all during the final 15 minutes. Tufts had four of the first five to take a 17-11 margin when Tyler Olney scored at 8:27 of the fourth. Bacarella answered at 8:13 before another four-out-of-five goals stretch by the hosts put their lead at 21-13 when Griffin Johnson scored with 3:37 remaining. Six goals were scored in the final 103 seconds to put an end to it.
Inside the Crease
- The Jumbos held a narrow 53-48 shot advantage over the Owls, and tallied 38 grounds balls to Keene State's 30.
- Rotatori recorded nine ground balls, while sophomore JJ Downey tallied five.
- Junior Mat Howe tied his season-high with 14 saves over 60 minutes of action, while three goalies saw time in the net for the Jumbos. Ben Shmerler saved 10 over the first half, while Robert Treiber registered five saves in 28:05 and Jon Conley stopped one in 1:55.
- The Owls will play Nichols in Orlando, Florida on Monday, March 13th.
- The Jumbos will host Middlebury on Friday, March 10th at 6 p.m.
(Portions of this release courtesy of Tufts University Athletics)