GORHAM, ME – Despite a trio of hat tricks from sophomores Eric Caldwell (East Moriches, NY), Christian Sparacino (Manorville, NY), and Ryan Reuling (Groton, CT), the Western Connecticut State University men's lacrosse team was stunned at Little East Conference nemesis Southern Maine, 13-11, on Saturday afternoon. The visitors held a 9-8 lead heading into the fourth quarter but the hosts rallied to capture the win. With the loss, the Colonials dropped to 4-7 overall and 0-3 in league play, while the Huskies improved to 5-6 and 2-1.
WestConn senior Bryan Murchison (Huntington, NY) dominated the faceoff x, winning 16-of-27 opportunities. However, Southern Maine held a commanding edge in groundballs, 30-9, while also going 3-for-8 on man-up chances.
Tristan Dundas paced the Huskies with a game-high five goals, while Paul Leonardo added four. Colonial rookie goalie Perry Cassidy (East Setauket, NY) took the loss, falling to 3-7 and notching 13 saves, while Southern Maine's Zach Bassette improved to 5-6 and stopped 12 shots.
It was tightly contested from wire-to-wire. The hosts jumped out to a 3-1 lead before Reuling and Caldwell each found the back of the cage, deadlocking the count at 3-3 to conclude the opening period.
WestConn would lead by a goal on two separate occasions in the second quarter before USM would regain a two-goal lead. Reuling struck yet again with five seconds remaining before halftime, cutting it to 7-6.
The Colonials outscored the Huskies 3-1 in the third. Caldwell rounded out the scoring with an unassisted scoring strike, giving the visitors a 9-8 lead with one quarter left to play. However, Southern Maine would rally with five fourth quarter goals to stun WestConn.
The Colonials will look to rebound when they host visiting LEC cross-state rival Eastern Connecticut on Wednesday at 7 p.m.