USMMA Begins Conference Play with Loss to Goucher

KINGS POINT, N.Y. On Saturday afternoon, the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy men's lacrosse squad opened its Landmark Conference portion of the 2010 schedule and fell to Goucher College, 11-7, at Brooks Stadium in Kings Point, N.Y. With the victory, the Gophers improved to 7-3 overall and 2-0 in league play. Following the defeat, the Mariners moved to 4-4 on the season and 0-1 in the conference.

Through the first half of the game and 12 minutes into the third quarter, the contest between the two Landmark foes was a see-saw, back-and-forth affair. No team had more than a one-goal lead until 12:58 left in the last quarter when freshman midfielder John Curry (Yarmouth, Maine) netted a marker to put Goucher ahead, 9-7. The Gophers added two more tallies to seal the win.

For Kings Point, senior attackman Brian Flannery (North Massapequa, N.Y.) and freshman attack Phil Walker (Falmouth, Mass.) contributed two goals each. In addition, the North Massapequa native dished out a pair of assists for a team-high four points. Sophomore attacker Sean Zakow (South Huntington, N.Y.), sophomore midfielder Tyler Spaulding (Hollywood, Md.) and senior midfielder Ryan Hadley (Davidsonville, Md.) recorded a goal apiece. Junior attacker Zach Gray (Scituate, Mass.) had an assist. In the cage, senior goalkeeper Keegan Boyle (Wilbraham, Mass.) received the loss and saw his record fall to 4-4 on the year. The Wilbraham native stopped eight shots.

For Goucher, sophomore attacker Rory Averett (Ivyland, Pa.) recorded a game-high four goals. He also dished out an assist for a game-high five points. Sophomore attack Kyle Boncaro (Geneva, N.Y.) and Curry found the back of the net three and two times, respectively. Between the pipes, senior netminder Chris Stricklin (Germantown, Md.) recorded a game-high nine saves and earned the win.

Head Coach Tom Gill and the Mariners return to action next Saturday when they travel to Scranton, Pa. to try and even up their Landmark Conference record against the Royals of the University of Scranton. The opening faceoff is slated for 2:00 p.m.

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KINGS POINT, N.Y. - Goucher scored four times in the fourth quarter and, just as importantly, kept the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy totally off the scoreboard the entire final period in earning an 11-7 victory this afternoon that allowed the Gophers to take over sole possession of first place in the Landmark Conference.

Kyle Boncaro (Geneva, N.Y./Geneva) opened the scoring in the fourth quarter, sticking an unassisted goal just :54 into the period to put the Gophers (7-3, 2-0 Landmark) ahead 8-7. When John Curry (Yarmouth, Maine/Yarmouth) tallied an unassisted goal less than two minutes later to put Goucher up 9-7, that was the first time the two teams had been separated by more than one goal.

Rory Averett (Ivyland, Pa./Council Rock North) set up a goal by Curry with 6:29 remaining to make the score 10-7 and then Averett closed out the scoring with 2:16 remaining by netting an unassisted extra-man goal, his team-leading 33rd goal of the season.

The Gophers led 6-5 at the half, the difference being Averett's man-up goal with :11 showing on the clock. The Mariners (4-4, 0-1 Landmark) tied the score at 6-6 on a goal by Phil Walker 1:20 into the third quarter and went ahead on an unassisted goal by Brian Flannery with 9:51 remaining in the period.

An unassisted goal by Jacob Fratella (Wilmington, Del./Brandywine) with 3:03 left to play in the third quarter got the Gophers even at 7-7, the seventh tie of the contest.

The Gophers were outshot 32-30, but they held the advantage in that category in the decisive fourth quarter, 11-3. Chris Stricklin (Germantown, Md./Seneca Valley), who went the distance in goal for Goucher, made stops on all three shots the Mariners got off in the final period and finished with nine saves.


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