WILLIMANTIC, Conn. – The 12th-ranked Endicott men's lacrosse team continued their impressive start to the 2014 season by taking down Little East Conference (LEC) opponent Eastern Connecticut State by a score of 10-3 as the Gulls will head into their league opener this Wednesday with a 3-0 overall record.
Endicott opens up their Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) schedule on Wednesday, March 12th with a home game against the University of New England. Face-off is at 4:00 pm against the Nor'easters who the Gulls ousted from the 2013 CCC Semifinals 15-6 in their last meeting. Endicott is 21-5 all-time against UNE, but did drop their regular season game in Biddeford, Maine last spring.
Endicott improved to 3-1 in four career meetings against East Conn with Saturday's dominating effort. After dropping a 9-8 game in back in the 1996 season, the Gulls have rattled off three in-a-row in early March match ups in each of the past three seasons.
Gulls sophomore goalie Cameron Bell (Falmouth, Maine) denied Warrior attackers with eight saves over the first two quarters as Endicott developed a 6-1 lead after 30 minutes. Bell would finish with 13 saves in the game and dropped his early season goals against average to 4.67 goals per game with a .725 save percentage.
Endicott's first quarter success, which equaled a 4-1 lead, was fueled by a goal and an assist by junior midfielder Joshua Tordik (Sayville, N.Y.) in the first five minutes of the game. Tordik assisted on the first of three Colin Bannon (Westport, Conn.) goals just 55 seconds into the game and two and a half minutes later beat Warriors goalie Blake Smaldone (Hamliton, Mass.) with an unassisted tally. Tordik would also assist on junior Harrison Cotter's (Lordship, Conn.) first goal of the game which came early in the second quarter.
Endicott junior attackman Nick Pinciaro (Beverly, Mass.) netted his fifth goal of the season to make it 3-0 and after East Conn got on the board with 3:28 remaining in the first, Gulls junior attacker Kyle Weber (West Hartford, Conn.) scored man-up goal, assisted by Peter Erickson (Yarmouth, Maine), to make it a 4-1 lead.
Following Cotter's second quarter goal, Bannon found the back of the net again off a pass from Cotter with 8:17 remaining in the opening half. Endicott would go into halftime with a 6-1 lead.
The Warriors turned in their best quarter in the third by outscoring the Gulls 2-1 on tallies by Nick Carisio (Cheshire, Conn.) and Mike Jordan (Cheshire, Conn.). Endicott junior midfielder Jeremy Morgan (Lake Panamoka, N.Y.) helped stop the bleeding with his first goal of the game, unassisted, to keep the Gulls on top 7-3
The fourth quarter belong the Endicott with Bannon, Morgan, and Cotter all picking up goals. Cotter's goal was another man-up conversion as the Gulls finished the game 2-of-6 on the extra-man advantage.
Endicott's success in this game was due in large part to freshman Tommy Hughes' (Coram, N.Y.) efficiency on face-offs as he won 14-of-17 chances with 10 ground balls. Gulls defenseman Chris Cooney (Cranston, R.I.) contributed with four ground balls with Ian Knechtle (New Canaan, Conn.) scooping two.