MANCHESTER, N.H. – For the first time in program history, the Southern New Hampshire University men's lacrosse team defeated Bentley University by a score of 8-7 Wednesday evening in Northeast-10 Conference play on Larkin Field. The Penmen are now 5-6 overall and improve to 5-4 in league play, while the Falcons sit at 6-5 overall and 6-2 in the conference.
The win breaks up a 22-game losing streak against Bentley, and marks the team's third straight victory as well.
Sophomore Cameron Joyce (Braintree, Mass.) led the Penmen offense with four points, including three goals and one assist, while Jeremy Buckley (Norwell, Mass.) and Cory Allen (Suffield, Conn.) each added two scores apiece. Phil LaTorre (Londonderry, N.H.) scored once for the Penmen, while Rob Murray (Marblehead, Mass.) had two assists.
The entire game was back-and-forth, and was tied five times with three different lead changes. But, despite getting down early in the first quarter, the Penmen were able to counter, and never trailed again for the remainder of the game.
David Phelps notched the first score of the game on a man-up opportunity for Bentley 1:19 into the first frame, and held the 1-0 lead until the 9:06 mark when Buckley scored unassisted to tie it up. LaTorre then followed with his own tally from Murray to take a 2-1 lead with 6:36 left to play. However, the Falcons answered back with a pair of goals to take a 3-2 lead into the second quarter.
The Penmen owned the second period, scoring two goals and holding the Falcons to none. Allen scored first late in the quarter to tie the game at 3-3, and Joyce trailed just 1:44 later to regain the lead at 4-3 before the half.
Buckley came out of the third quarter scoring his second goal of the game to give SNHU its biggest lead at 5-3, but a pair of Bentley goals tied it up once again late in the third. With less than three minutes to play, and the game tied, Allen scored to retake the lead at 6-5, and Joyce added his second tally of the game with 1:03 left to go up by two again.
The hosts were unable to get much going in the final quarter as Bentley tied the game up again with two unanswered goals with 9:22 remaining. However, Joyce scored the gamewinner, and the lone goal for the Penmen of the quarter at the 5:03 mark to give SNHU the lead one more time, and to take the game.
Morgan Weireter (Oak Park, Calif.) had 18 saves in net for the Penmen, including six in the final quarter to lead SNHU to victory. Josh Baker had 16 saves for the Falcons in a losing effort.
The Penmen return to action on Saturday, April 19 when they travel to No. 2 LeMoyne for a 2:00 p.m. league game.