Amherst vs. Mount Ida
March 8, 2008
The Game Story:
AMHERST, MA – Sophomore Tom McDonnell (Manhasset, NY) and first-year Nick Newman (Yorktown Heights, NY) each scored four goals and picked up an assist to lead the Amherst College men’s lacrosse team to a 14-3 victory over Mount Ida College in the Lord Jeffs’ 2008 season opener. Amherst kicks off its season with a win for the first time since 2005, while the Mustangs fall to 0-2 on the season.

Sophomore Matt Kellman (Wilton, CT) won the opening face-off for the Jeffs and assisted McDonnell on the first goal of the game after just 38 seconds of action, as Amherst wasted no time getting its first goal of the season out of the way. The Jeffs won every face-off in the first quarter and played swarming defense to end the frame with a 3-0 lead.

As the rain began to fall harder on Gooding Field, the offensive productivity for both teams began to decrease, causing nearly a 15-minute scoring drought. Newman got things rolling again by having a hand in each of the next three goals of the game, including his first collegiate goal that came 8:45 into the second quarter. He followed up with an assist at the 10:54 mark and another goal just 22 seconds later to give the Jeffs a 6-0 advantage.

After a slashing penalty was called on Amherst, Mount Ida was given a man-up opportunity with less than one minute remaining before halftime. The Mustangs took advantage of their situation and got on the board when junior Brett Conley was able to get a shot past Amherst goalkeeper Matt Pietroforte (Brooklyn, NY), as the Jeffs carried a 6-1 lead into the second half.

McDonnell’s third goal came two and a half minutes into the third quarter and gave Amherst a 7-1 edge, but Mount Ida senior tri-captain John Lightbown tallied the next two goals of the game, with Conley picking up the assist on both man-up goals. The Mustangs’ third goal came with just 55 seconds remaining in the third quarter, as they carried significant momentum into the final period and were playing with more energy than the Jeffs.

Mount Ida’s momentum didn’t last very long, however, as the Jeffs went on to score the next seven goals of the game en route to their 14-3 victory. Five of the seven fourth-period goals came in the final five minutes of the game, with the final three goals separated by less than one minute. Pietroforte recorded nine saves for Amherst, while sophomore Matt Vernik picked up 15 stops for the Mustangs.

The Lord Jeffs return to action Wednesday, Mar. 12 when they travel to take on Springfield College at 6 p.m.