No. 18 Jeffs Pull Away From Williams, 14-9
Contact: Ben Badua
AMHERST, Mass. – Opening the third quarter on a 5-0 run, the 18th-ranked Amherst men’s lacrosse team pulled away from archrival Williams on Senior Day at Pratt Field, 14-9.
Recording their fifth-straight win over the Ephs, the Jeffs improved to 11-3 (6-3 NESCAC) on the season, while Williams fell to 8-6 (5-4 NESCAC) with the loss.
Scoring a pair of goals, Devin Acton ’14 became the first Amherst player since Derek Cherney ’07 to reach the 200-point plateau. Upping his career goal total to 158, the senior standout sits at an even 200 points thanks to 42 career helpers. Handing out six more assists, Quinn Moroney ’16 now has 81 points in 2013-14 (21 G, 60 A), the highest total in the Jeffs’ modern era since Cherney posted 68 points during the 2005 campaign.
Staking the Purple & White to an early lead, Kevin Curry ’15 buried the game’s first goal just 1:14 after the opening face-off. Approaching the 10-minute mark, Dylan Park ’16 found space in front before beating Eph goalie Dan Whittam ’15. Just 1:09 later, Sam Carson ’17 extended the cushion by bouncing a shot into the back of the Eph cage.
With 8:24 left in the first, Williams got on the board as Andy Grabowski ’15 whipped a Conor Roddy ’16 feed past Greg Majno ’14. On the man advantage in the waning moments of the first quarter, Tanner MacIvor ’16 cut the visitors’ deficit to one, but Park came right back and tucked a high shot inside the left post. With five seconds left in the period, MacIvor once again helped slice into the Jeff lead, assisting on a Joe Kinney ’15 goal.
Wasting no time lighting up the scoreboard in the second frame, Moroney flipped a backhanded pass to Park who rifled another high shot past Whittam. Five minutes later, Moroney set up Kane Haffey ’16 to make it 6-3.
Fighting off an Amherst defender, Grabowski scored his second of the year just 15 seconds after Haffey’s tally to help the Ephs keep pace. With 6:16 to go in the quarter, Bryson Gilber-Bono ’16 recorded another Williams score, but a pair of Acton and Aaron Mathias ’14 goals in the final 3:09 of the stanza put the Purple & White up 8-5 at the intermission.
Breaking the game open, Amherst opened the third quarter on a 5-0 run. Haffey scored the period’s first goal just 16 seconds after the restart. Taking advantage of a couple Williams penalties, the Jeffs posted four-straight man-up tallies. Chris Albanese ’17 got things started at 13:13 before again netting a marker after a Haffey goal. Mathias wrapped up the stretch run with a score at 5:06 that made it 13-5.
Recording a pair of man-up goals of its own in the final 2:39 of the third, Williams pulled back within five on a Steven Kiesel ’15 tally with 13:02 remaining in regulation. Midway through the final quarter, Acton ended the Ephs’ 3-0 spurt with his team-high 40th goal of the season.
Grabowski led Williams with three goals, while MacIvor had two goals and two assists. Whittam made five saves in the first half, while Miles McCarthy ’16 finished with eight stops over the final 30 minutes.
Amherst’s Majno had six saves in the victory as the Purple & White walked off with a 44-38 edge in shots and a 44-35 advantage in ground balls. Going 15-for-16 on clears, the Jeffs also won 16-of-24 face-offs, while scoring five goals on just four man-up opportunities.
Amherst will close out its regular season against Trinity on Wednesday, Apr. 23 at 4:30 p.m.