By: Josh Caredeo, Sports Editor
The Lyndon State College men’s lacrosse earned their first playoff victory in program history with a 14-8 win over Maine Maritime Academy in the North Atlantic Conference quarterfinals on Saturday on the Varsity Athletic Field.
Sophomore Kevin McCarthy and Freshman Spencer Aubin led the Hornet offense, each scoring four goals and tallying one assist. Shea Jones added two goals and three assists while Zach Carey chipped in three goals. Colin Young played a huge factor in the faceoff circle going 13-for-24 with eight groundballs. Junior goaltender Shane Morin got another win in net while getting 12 saves in the process.
Chase Whittemore opened up the scoring for Maine Maritime, with a goal four minutes into the game to give the Mariners the first lead. The Hornets answered with three goals, two from McCarthy and one from Jones to take a 3-1 lead. With just six seconds left in the quarter, Dean Samuelson found Whittemore to close the gap to 3-2.
In the second quarter until Aubin picked up a loose ball near the MMA net and flung a shot into the net over his shoulder to push the lead to 4-2. The Mariners won the ensuing faceoff and quickly moved the ball down the field as Whittemore scored his third goal. Maine Maritime followed with another shot on goal but were denied by Morin who passed out to Kendrick Mills. Mills entered the attack zone unchecked, firing a shot past Schell for a 5-3 lead. With 1:33 left in the half, Carey scored his first to give the Hornets the 6-3 advantage going into the half.
Lyndon’s offense continued to wear down the Mariner defense in the final quarter as they moved the ball quickly. Carey, Aubin, and McCarthy gave the Hornets three straight goals over the first six minutes of the period to extend the lead to 12-6. The Mariners answered with two goals and would cut the score to 12-8 with 3:30 to play. Lyndon tallied two more goals as Jones found Aubin in front of the net with 1:56 left and Justin Mosher found Carey open on the left side for a goal with just 30 seconds left to round out the scoring with a 14-8 win.
They would go on to face men’s lacrosse team fell to New England College 23-3 in the North Atlantic Conference semifinal game on Wednesday.
The two teams were tied at 2-2 early in the opening quarter but the Pilgrims closed out the first half scoring 14 unanswered, eventually sailing to the 23-3 victory. NEC out shot Lyndon 52-14 and held the 29-16 advantage in ground balls.
New England College’s Sean Laragy led all scorers finishing the game with seven goals and five assists. Skyler Saunders chipped in three goals and two assists, while Will Hay scored three times and had an assist. Austin Frankel scooped up a game-high six ground balls for the Pilgrims, while Connor Fries finished with five ground balls and three caused turnovers.
Lyndon would fall to the Pilgrims 23-3, ultimately being eliminated from the playoffs. William Platt picked up the win in net, finishing with seven saves in 53 minutes of work. The Hornets closed out the season with a 7-8 mark overall and 6-4 in the conference.
The North Atlantic Conference released the men’s lacrosse All-Conference selections Monday with Lyndon achieving four Second Team selections. Kevin McCarthy finished the NAC regular season with 20 goals, seven assists, eight ground balls, and four caused turnovers. Spencer Aubin tallied 18 goals, three assists, and 12 ground balls. Freshman midfielder Shea Jones recorded 14 goals, 15 assists, 31 ground balls, and nine caused turnovers. Freshman defenseman Marshall Blackman anchored the Hornets defense with 22 ground balls, 14 caused turnovers, and one goal.
Kevin Pezanowski received Coach of the Year for the second consecutive season. Pezanowski led the Hornets to their best record ever and a fourth seed in the NAC playoffs. In conference play, Lyndon ranked second in caused turnovers, third in assists, fourth in goals, and fourth in ground balls.
It was a privilege covering the Men’s Lacrosse Team this season. It is for sure that they will have equal or greater success next season.