Men's Lax Improves to 10-1 on Season, Earns Little Three Crown
Issue   |   Tue, 04/07/2015 - 23:39
Amherst Athletics
Senior Kevin Curry has provided six goals and four assists this year.

The men’s lacrosse team advanced its record to 10-1, starting with a win over Springfield College on March 24. Though their winning streak ended with a loss to Middlebury on March 28, the Jeffs didn’t lose stride, following that game with big wins over Wesleyan and Williams to be crowned the Little Three champs.

Kane Haffey ’16 notched 9 points in the decisive 14-8 win against Springfield, leading the Jeffs with eight goals and an assist. He got things started five minutes into the first quarter, scoring off of a pass from senior captain Kevin Curry. Quinn Moroney ’16 offered up five assists in the matchup, while in the net Cody Tranbarger ’17 made 16 saves. The purple and white defensive unit held Springfield off in the extra-man opportunities, giving up only one goal on 10 man-down instances.

The Jeffs then suffered the first setback of the season in a 17-11 loss to Middlebury. The game was a battle from the start, as Moroney put the first point on the board just 25 seconds into play. The Panthers didn’t hesitate, finding the back of the net a minute later. The quarter closed at a tie score of 4-4, but the Jeffs couldn’t hold on much longer. The Panthers came out firing in the second quarter. They put three unanswered goals in the cage before Amherst could regain some ground. Chris Albanese ’17 managed to bring the game within two goals, but Middlebury scored again before the half ended with an 8-5 lead for the Panthers. Despite four different Amherst players scoring at least two goals each throughout the game, the Jeffs couldn’t recover from the deficit in the second half.

On Wednesday, April 1, Wesleyan traveled to Amherst for a tight game. The Cardinals took the lead in the first, putting one past Tranbarger after 8:32. Matt Killian ’17 retaliated on a pass from Sam Lawlor ’16 within a minute, before the Cardinals put three more in the net. Moroney dished the ball to Albanese to cut the deficit to 4-2 before the end of the quarter.

Moroney and Albanese tacked on four more assists and three more goals, respectively, over the course of the game to contribute to the Jeffs win. Quincy McDougal ’15, Mike Litner ’16 and Curry each tallied a goal for the Jeffs in the second quarter, but Wesleyan matched with three goals of its own, making the score 7-5 at the end of the half.

The purple and white turned it up in the third quarter. Wesleyan scored the first goal of the half, bringing their lead to 8-5. Then Charlie Gill ’16 assisted Ian Kadish ’18 to start the Jeffs’ roll. Albanese added a point before Dylan Park ’16 tied the game at 8-8, and Albanese gave the Jeffs the lead on a man-up opportunity with 3:41 left in the third. The Cardinals answered with two quick goals before Gill dished one to Killian to tie things up at 10 at the close of the third. Moroney found both Albanese and Haffey at the beginning of the fourth to give the Jeffs the two-goal lead, but Wesleyan replied with two more to again tie the score. Haffey scored on a pass from Moroney, giving Amherst the lead. This was followed by a goal from Park on an assist from Gill, his fourth of the game. Wesleyan put a final goal on the board, but could not manage another, and the game finished in a thrilling 14-13 win for the Jeffs. Tranbarger notched 13 saves, while Curry controlled the ground ball scene. Ryan Cassidy ’16 led the Jeffs with three caused turnovers. This win brought Amherst one step closer to earning the title of Little Three champions.

On Saturday, April 4, Amherst traveled to face rival Williams in Williamstown, Massachusetts, where the team beat the Ephs 12-8. The Jeffs took the lead early, as Connor Crump ’16 netted a goal just after a minute into the first quarter. Gill found Albanese at the 10:19 mark, which was followed closely by a Williams’ goal. However, Moroney put two goals on the board to give the Jeffs a 4-1 lead at the end of the first. Rob Butko ’16 passed one to Moroney for the fifth goal of the match early in the second quarter, followed by a goal by the Ephs, but Butko responded with a goal of his own. Moroney added two more to the Jeffs’ tally before Williams found the back of the net near the end of the half, closing the first 30 minutes at 8-3.

Williams and Amherst each added a goal in the third, as Gill kept the Amherst lead at five with the ninth score of the game. Albanese assisted Park to add two for the Jeffs early in the fourth, but the Ephs added two of their own to make the score 11-6. Haffey notched the final goal for the Jeffs, bringing them to 12, before Williams put another two goals on the board. The Ephs couldn’t get any closer, however, and the purple and white were crowned Little Three champions.

Moroney recorded 6 points during the game. At 228 points, he is now the Amherst program’s all-time point leader. Moroney and Butko each picked up six groundballs, while Kadish scooped up five, and Tranbarger saved 13 shots between the pipes. The Jeffs improved to 5-1 in the NESCAC with the win.

Amherst will face Connecticut College at home Tuesday, April 7 before heading up to Colby on Saturday, April 11.

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