Franklin Pierce Opens Topping Roberts Wesleyan

RINDGE, N.H. (March 4, 2012) -- Franklin Pierce opened its 2012 season on Sunday with a come-from-behind 13-6 win over Roberts Wesleyan on Sodexo Field in Rindge.

Franklin Pierce captured its third-straight season opener, marking the first time in program history that had been accomplished, and improved to 1-0. RWU, playing in just the second game of its inaugural season, fell to 0-2.

Three Ravens midfielders registered a hat trick on Sunday, including senior Ryan Dintaman (Northfield, Mass.), sophomore Eddie Noonan (Foxboro, Mass.) and senior Jimmy McInnis (Amherst, N.H.). Freshman attacker Kevin Dargin (Littleton, Mass.) logged a four-point afternoon in his collegiate debut as he scored once and assisted on three others. Dintaman scored his three tallies on 11 shots, while junior attackman Brendan Cahill (Hollis, N.H.) launched a team-high 12 shots and scored twice, while assisting on another marker for a three-point day.

Freshman goalie Don Denman (Exeter, N.H.) made his collegiate debut as he started in net and made six saves to earn his first career victory.

Colin Cornarie scored three times and picked up a pair of assists to lead the Raiders, while David Smith followed with two goals.

The first half was sloppy on both sides as several penalties were called and neither side generated much offensive rhythm. Despite the ineffective play, Roberts Wesleyan was able to generate a 4-1 lead with 2:23 remaining in the frame.

The Ravens finally gained possession of the ball in a scramble near midfield, and upon attaining a successful clearing attempt, they called timeout to settle any first-game jitters. The move paid off as the Ravens were able to dump in a pair of goals in the final 83 seconds to get within one. Dargin scored his first collegiate marker with 1:23 left when classmate Matt Entwistle (Marshfield, Mass.) slipped a crossing pass to him near the right of the goal, and fired off a shot that beat the RWU goalkeeper to lower half of the net. Dargin provided the helper on Franklin Pierce's final goal of the frame, which came at :17 when he sent a pass to Cahill, who let one rip past the netting of the RWU goalkeeper's stick.

Sophomore middie Alex Connolly (West Newbury, Mass.) scored his first career goal less than a minute into the second quarter to knot the score at 4-4, but the Raiders were able to go back on top two minutes later when Smith beat Denman with a shot from the left of the net.

Noonan, last season's Northeast-10 Conference Rookie of the Year, made his presence felt just :59 seconds later when he took off down the field with Dargin as the two fed the ball back and forth to each other while charging the net. Dargin was able to get a pass over to Noonan, who quickly fired off a shot that beat the Raiders goalie on the high side to tie it at 5-5.

Dintaman scored an unassisted marker with 9:44 left until halftime to stake the Ravens to a 6-5 lead, as they would never trail the rest of the way.

Franklin Pierce blew it wide open in the third quarter, first getting a man-up goal from McInnis a little less than four minutes into the frame, and then a spectacular goal from Noonan at the 7:27 mark. The scoring play started with Connolly driving down the right side of the goal as he turned the corner and fired a shot that rang off the post. Noonan was able to work himself past several defenders along the left side of the net, and as the ball clanged off the post, he fielded it cleanly in mid-air and fired a behind-the-back shot that went high side for the 8-5 Franklin Pierce advantage.

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