Tufts vs. Wesleyan
April 23, 2003
The Game Story:
MEDFORD - When Wesleyan pulled within one goal early in the second half, Tufts sophomore Bryan Griffin (West Islip, NY) took the game into his own hands, scoring a second-half hat trick to lead the Jumbos to an 11-7 victory over the Wesleyan Cardinals on Wednesday in NESCAC Men^Ys Lacrosse action.

With its third straight victory, Tufts improves to 9-3 on the season and 6-2 in the conference. The win puts Tufts in a tie for second place in the NESCAC with Amherst and will likely earn them a home field advantage in the first round of the playoffs. Wesleyan slips to 9-4 on the season and falls to fourth place in NESCAC at 5-3 with the loss.

When Wesleyan inched its way within 5-4 on a goal by junior Ian Applegate (Setauket, NY) at 8:54 of the third quarter, Tufts unleashed its Griffin. Ending the Jumbos^Y scoring drought of more than 15 minutes, Griffin and sophomore David Taylor (Burke, VA) combined for three goals in under two minutes to put the Jumbos up by four. Griffin tallied two acrobatic goals, beating his man and drawing out the goalie to net the last goal of the run extending the lead to 8-4 at 5:54 of the third. The Jumbos held onto a four-goal cushion the rest of the way, leading by as many as five goals. Sophomore Sam Fleischner (Providence, RI) scored the Cardinals^Y last goal of the game at 1:27 in the fourth to end the game at 11-7.

Wesleyan threatened early. Senior Chris Kollar (Middle Island, NY) completed the Jumbos^Y first three-goal run of the game to give Tufts a 5-2 lead at 9:01 in the second quarter. Just four minutes later, Wesleyan freshman Mike Vitulano (Fairfield, CT) quickly answered with the second of his pair of goals to bring the score to 5-3 at 5:00. Applegate^Ys goal cut the margin to one, but that was as close as the Cardinals would get.

Tufts sophomore goalie Luke Chicco (Merrick, NY) provided effective play between the pipes, turning away 16 shots to earn the win. Wesleyan sophomore Matt Wheeler (Darien, CT) made five saves in the losing effort. Freshman Jordan Funt (Setauket, NY) also scored twice for Wes.