Manhattanville Doubled Up by Vassar

PURCHASE, N.Y. Manhattanville fell to 0-2 on the season after Saturday's 14-7 defeat at the hands of the Vassar Brewers. Despite some good defense and offensive production, turnovers turned out to be the Achilles Heel of Manhattanville as it enabled the Brewers to score quickly in transition and stopped the Valiant comeback in its tracks.

The first quarter was dominated by the Brewers, as they outshot the Valiants 11-1 in the frame. However, the Valiants defense was equally as impressive as the Vassar offense, as the defense yielded only two goals despite playing in their zone for majority of the quarter. Freshman goaltender Ian Reill (East Rockaway, N.Y./East Rockaway), who finished the game with 15 total saves, made countless stops including many from point blank.

Heading into the second quarter trailing 2-0, the Valiants came out firing as junior midfielder Cory Balog (Hamden, Conn./Hamden) won the opening face-off and then pushed the ball to CJ Paniccia (Locust Valley, N.Y./Locust Valley). Shaking off two defenders Paniccia found freshman attacker Colin Morrissey (Shelton, Conn./St. Joseph) in front of the net who executed a great shot fake and then fired a shot low to beat Vassar goaltender Andrew Nicol.

In a game that would be decided by runs, after giving up their first goal Vassar scored seven of the next eight goals. Led by sophomore attacker Noah Parsons, who finished with three goals and an assist for the Brewers, Vassar held a 9-2 lead before the Valiants made a run of their own.

Trailing 9-2, with just over 13 minutes remaining in the third quarter, freshman midfielder Ed Motherway (Suffield, Conn./Suffield) entered the attacking third and, ripping a shot from 15 yards out, beat Nicol to cut the deficit to 9-3. Less than four minutes later Jack Polak (Longmeadow, Mass./Longmeadow) fired home a pass from Morrissey to make it a 9-4 game with 9:34 remaining in the third quarter.

With the third quarter set to end at 9-4 Vassar, midfielder Gianni Gelormino committed an aggressive penalty after the horn sounded, earning himself a two-minute non-releasable penalty for a slash to the head of Manhattanville freshman midfielder Andrew Murray (Yonkers, N.Y./Archbishop Stepinac).

The Valiants, making the most of their man-up opportunity, scored just 10 seconds into the fourth quarter as Balog cut towards goal and finished on a pass from Connor Normandin (Stratford, Conn./Bunnell), who finished with two goals and an assist on the day. Just 58 seconds later Paniccia, who finished the game with one goal and three assists, found the back of the net to cut the lead to 9-6.

Just as it seemed the Valiants would mount another comeback, similar to last week's fourth quarter against Maritime, Vassar went on to score the next five goals before Normandin put in his second of the game with only 2:27 remaining in the game.

The loss drops Manhattanville to 0-2 on the season. There have been positives to take from these first two games as the Valiants now begin a four-game road trip starting with a Wednesday night match-up against Western Connecticut State, followed by a showdown with Utica on Sunday and then two games in North Carolina over spring break.

2014-03-01



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