NEC Dethrones Spartans, Finishes Perfect NAC Season

HENNIKER, N.H. New England College men's lacrosse captured their first North Atlantic Conference (NAC) Championship beating the defending champions Castleton State College 18-7 Saturday afternoon in Henniker.

With the win the Pilgrims improve to 12-6 on the season and earned and automatic bid to the 2012 NCAA DIII Men's Lacrosse Tournament, the third bid in program history. With the loss the Spartans are now 11-8 overall.

The Pilgrims opened the scoring five minutes into the game as Steve Parsons (Townsend, Mass.) scored his 39th goal of the season unassisted. The teams battled through the next five minutes scoreless before NEC scored a quick pair of goals in a 30 second span building a 3-0 lead with five minutes remaining in the first.

Castleton got on the board with 51 seconds left in the first as Zach Davidson (South Burlington, Vt.) scored his team-high 46th goal of the season cutting the Pilgrim lead to 5-1. NEC extended its lead to 7-1 just before the end of the quarter as James Putney (Mountain Lakes, N.J.) and Jake Flynn (Merrimack, N.H.) each scored in the final 10 seconds.

The Pilgrims continued to pour it on, opening the second quarter with two quick goals, including a score from Sam Freihofner (Scarsdale, N.Y.) and another from Flynn. The Spartans got one back as Colin Murray (Oshawa, Ontario) notched a goal off a Davidson helper, but NEC headed into halftime with the 11-2 lead closing out the half with two unanswered goals.

NEC grabbed its largest lead of the game scoring the first four goals of the second half to go up 15-2. Castleton battled back as the Spartans finished the third quarter with three straight man-up goals.

The Pilgrims offense proved to be too much in the final quarter, however, as NEC came away with the 3-2 advantage in fourth quarter goals en route to the 18-7 victory.

Leading the way for NEC was Sam Freihofner who finished with five goals and an assist. NEC's Matt Goyette(Lowell, Mass.) had three goals and James Putney finished with two goals and dished out two assists.

Leading the way for Castleton was Nohea King (St. Albans, Vt.) who netted three goals and had an assist.

Picking up the win in net for NEC was Nick Aquaviva (Syracuse, N.Y.) who finished with 11 saves. In goal for Castleton was Eric Horsfield (Tolland, Conn.) who recorded six saves on the afternoon.


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