The Amherst men’s lacrosse team successfully downed both out-of-conference foe Springfield College and NESCAC rival Middlebury College this week. After the two home wins, the 12th-ranked purple and white improved to 7-2 overall and 3-1 in conference play.
In their first matchup against Springfield, a low-scoring first quarter saw a goal by the Pride before Brogan Mahon ’19 opened up scoring for Amherst off an assist from fellow sophomore Andrew Ford.
After another scoreless six minutes, Springfield’s Ty Daugstrup notched a goal with six seconds left to give the visitors a slim 2-1 lead at the end of the first quarter.
The purple and white came out with a vengeance in the second quarter with nine goals, giving the Mammoths a solid 10-5 lead heading into the half.
The quarter featured two four-goal runs for Amherst, the first within just two minutes of play. Trenton Shore ’19 started the rally, followed by unassisted efforts from Jack Norton ’19, Matt Killian ’17 and Max Keeley ’18. Both Norton and Keeley would add two more tallies apiece before the end of the half to put the purple and white up for good.
Amherst continued their strong play in the third period, outscoring Springfield 6-3. Early goals from Ian Kadish ’18 and Colin Minicus ’20 got the ball rolling, while a man-up goal from Zach Schwartz ’17 and additional tallies from Minicus, Norton and Jackson Herrick ’20 put the team up 16-8 heading into the last quarter.
Springfield did manage a comeback attempt in the fourth period but couldn’t overcome the eight-goal deficit, eventually falling 18-14.
Just three days after the Springfield win, Middlebury traveled to the Pioneer Valley to face the purple and white.
Although the Panthers struck first, a commanding six-goal run from Amherst set the tone for the rest of the game. After a Brett Inglesby ’18 goal off a pass from Keeley opened the scoring, both Shore and Norton put two in the back of the net before the end of the quarter.
Meanwhile, Mahon added a goal of his own off an assist from Ford.
Norton continued his strong first-quarter performance across the game, racking up eight goals in a tremendous individual effort. Back and forth second and third quarters saw Middlebury and Amherst both post six goals, but the Panthers were never able to cut into Amherst’s lead.
One last push by the Mammoths in the final stanza of play saw an impressive six-goal run keyed by Minicus, Killian and Herrick, giving the purple and white the final 20-11 victory.
Thanks to his strong play against both Middlebury and Springfield, scoring seven goals against the Panthers and five against the Pride, Norton garnered NESCAC Player of the Week plaudits.
Norton’s award also marks the first time an Amherst attacker has earned such an honor since purple and white standout Quinn Moroney in the 2012 season.
Amherst will seek to stretch its current winning streak to six games when it returns to action on Wednesday, April 5 at 6 p.m. The Mammoths will play host to Little Three rival Wesleyan. The two schools will enter the match tied for fourth place in the NESCAC standings, with each boasting a 3-1 mark in conference play.