Three wins for men's lacrosse
The Colby men’s lacrosse team is on a hot streak. This past week, the Mules outscored their three opponents 49 to 18 and earned three wins in the process. The Mules also picked up a key win in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) against Connecticut College on Saturday, clinching a spot in the NESCAC postseason tournament. Tri-captain Chris Healy ’11 was happy about the NESCAC win but focused on the next game. “Clinching the playoffs was great, but we need to win against Bates to raise our seed and hopefully play Amherst or Middlebury.” The great week brought Colby back to over .500 at 8-6 overall and 3-5 in the NESCAC.
Healy added that Connecticut was “a very strong team last year and have played teams like Tufts and Amherst tough, so we knew we needed a great effort. This game was important as both teams were fighting to get a NESCAC playoff berth.” With so much on the line, the Mules made an effort to study how the Camels operated. Going into the game, “We knew their game systems inside and out, and that showed with how the defense played, led by captain Chris Healy ’11, Christian Kelso ’13 and Arya Mortazavi ’14.”
Saturday’s overtime thriller ended with a goal from scoring sensation John Jennings ’13. Jennings’ second goal of the game came with just under two minutes remaining in overtime. “John Jennings was huge with the OT goal, but Ian Deveau's ’13 hustle created that opportunity.” Jennings leads the team with 35 goals and one of the higher shots-on-goal percentages on the team. Jennings’ goal capped off a comeback by Colby that started in the fourth quarter. The Mules trailed 5-4 and 6-5 before taking a 7-6 lead with goals by Deveau and Derrick Flahive ’13 on assists from tri-captain Mark Squicciarino ’11 and Deveau, respectively. With just over a minute to play, a Camel nudged the ball past a Colby defender and slipped the ball past goalie Peter Reiley ’14 to send the game to overtime. Reiley made three saves on the day and was supported by a great defensive effort from Healy.
Overall, the game stated off evenly with Conn. and Colby trading goals. Both teams scored once in the first quarter and twice in the second, taking a 3-3 tie into the locker room. The Camels took the lead in the third, leading up to the dramatic fourth quarter and overtime period. Greg McKillop ’13 had two goals on the day and tri-captain Craig Bunker ’11 topped 100 ground balls on the season. Bunker added that “Bjorn Knutson ’13 was incredible... picking up loose balls, clearing and being a vital part of our defense and slide packages.”
The two non-conference weekday games for Colby really padded the statistics. Colby opened up the week against Maine Maritime Academy (MMA). Colby exploded for seven goals in the first quarter and six more in the second. Thirteen Mules scored, including three goals from James Wyse ’14 and McKillop, and four from Jennings. Wyse and John LoVerme ’11 each had three assists. “Against MMA, John LoVerme played very well, as did James Wyse, both of whom had big days statistically,” Bunker said.
In the second half, Colby poured on eight more goals, but MMA battled back with four goals of its own. One MMA shot bounced off the rim and another hit goalie Patrick Gilligan ’13 in the face. Tyler Cash ’12 also played goal, making one save on three shots.
The Husson game provided more of the same. “We put up points early, something we have been stressing all season, so we were very pleased with that,” Bunker said. Colby lead 11-0 at the half, but let up six goals in the third period. Colby finished with nine goals in the second half. Deveau led the Mules with five goals, and Healy, a defenseman, got in on the scoring with two of his own. Cash did not let up a goal in his fifteen minutes, with Gilligan and Reiley playing the remainder. Bunker dominated his faceoffs, winning 11 out of 13, as did Eric Eberhart ’12, who won nine out of 14.
Colby has its last regular season game this Friday against rival Bates College at home. “Bates is another great NESCAC team hungry to win, so it'll take a great team effort. There is also the incentive to win, as it may be the seniors' last game on Bill Alfond Field.” Show your support and head down to the field at 4 p.m.