Endicott vs. Salve Regina
May 3, 2007
The Game Story:
BEVERLY, MA - The 15th ranked Endicott College men's lacrosse team looks to capture their fourth straight Commonwealth Coast Conference championship on Saturday afternoon, this after defeating Salve Regina University, 12-4, in the CCC semifinals on Thursday in Beverly, MA.

The Gulls and the Seahawks matched-up in the final game of the regular season in a high-scoring, 26-12 Endicott victory; however both squads were somewhat slow out of the gate on Thursday. Salve Regina struck first as Ben Kelley (Lee, NH/Oyster River) took a cross-crease feed from Robert Hoffman (Spring Lake Heights, NJ/St. Rose) and beat sophomore goaltender Sean Kearny (Mahopac, NY/Mahopac) for the early 1-0 lead. Over the next six minutes of action Endicott was able to capitalize on a few Seahawks miscues, including a man-up strike on an empty net as SRU goalkeeper Brian Walker (Marshfield, MA/Marshfield) carried the ball all the way to midfield and turned it over allowing the Gulls to score in transition. Endicott held a slight 3-2 lead after one quarter of play.

The second frame featured more strong defense from both teams as neither side found the back of the net for over 10 minutes. The Gulls Eddie O'Reilly (Beverly, MA/Beverly) finally broke the ice as he planted a seed off-stick high from just inside the top of the box to put the home team up two. Back-to-back CCC Player of the Week Josh Gilbert (Simsbury, CT/Simsbury) got in on the scoring action as he buried consecutive goals just eight seconds apart, with the second coming on a clean face-off win by John Ortolani (Billerica, MA/Billerica) who found Gilbert alone on the crease for the easy lay-up. The Seahawks closed out the first half with a fast break goal from Ryan Comerford (Merrimack, NH/Worcester Academy) to make the score 6-3 at the break.

Dan Ryan (Billerica, MA/Billerica) opened the third quarter with an unassisted goal at the 11:45 mark to push the Gulls lead to four. Salve Regina refused to go quietly as Brandt Nelson (Shelburne, VT/Kimball Union) broke the goal line seven minutes later to keep the visitors hopes alive. In the end, the Gulls were just too strong as the Blue and Green scored five unanswered with their man-up team netting three strikes in the fourth quarter en route to the 12-4 win.

Endicott's Brandon Dube (Danvers, MA/Danvers) scored two goals and handed out four assist for a game-high six points. Josh Gilbert led all goal scorers as he added to his team-high points lead with three more tallies this afternoon. Salve Regina goaltender Brian Walker had a strong day between the pipes for the Seahawks as he kept the visitors in the contest, turning in 23 saves in the loss.

With the win, top-seeded Endicott will host the CCC finals on Saturday afternoon in Beverly, MA. The Gulls will face-off with long time North Shore rival Gordon College as the Fighting Scots pulled a 17-16 overtime upset over second-seeded Roger Williams University Thursday in Bristol, RI. The tentative game time on Saturday is 1:00 PM.