|Junior Beau Wood had three goals for the Jumbos
MEDFORD - Sixth-ranked Tufts shook off a determined Trinity College squad and earned its fifth straight victory with a 16-12 NESCAC men's lacrosse final at Bello Field on Saturday afternoon. Senior Andrew Fiamengo (New Fairfield, CT) led the Jumbos with three goals and two assists.
Visiting Trinity was within 10-9 at 5:10 of the third period following a man-up goal by junior Chase Growney (Berwyn, PA). However, Tufts scored five of the next six goals to open up a 15-10 lead on a tally by senior Ben Saperstein (Hewlett, NY) at 9:26 of the fourth. The Bantams scored back-to-back goals to close within 15-12, but Tufts finished off the victory with junior Dan Leventhal's (Chappaqua, NY) goal at 4:56 of the fourth.
Tufts had jumped out to a 3-0 lead, with sophomore Cole Bailey (Millersville, MD) scoring and assisting goals. Trinity answered with consecutive Matt Cohen (East Lyme, CT) goals before Fiamengo scored with four seconds left in the first for a 4-2 Tufts advantage.
Trinity rallied to tie the score at 5-5 when sophomore Matt Hauck (Ridgewood, NJ) scored at 8:26 of the second quarter. The Jumbos scored three of the next four goals in the quarter, including freshman John Uppgren's (Stillwater, MN) with eight seconds remaining to take an 8-6 lead into intermission.
Cohen, who scored five goals in the game, netted the first of the second half to bring the Bantams within 8-7. The Jumbos got the next two, but Trinity answerd again with a pair and trailed 10-9 following Growney's man-up goal. Two goals by sophomore Chris Schoenhut (Mill Neck, NY) keyed Tufts' decisive run from late in the third to early in the fourth.
Junior Beau Wood (Sherwood Forest, MD) added three goals to the Tufts win. Uppgren had a goal and two assists, while Schoenhut included an assist with his two goals. Senior face-off man Brian Ruggiero (Huntington, NY) was a solid 17 for 30.
Tufts switched goaltenders early in the third, replacing starter Patton Watkins (Chattanooga, TN) with freshman Alex Salazar (Summit, NJ). Watkins earned the win with three saves, while Salazar made six saves in 25:13 of relief.
Trinity's Cohen had an assist as well to finish with six points while also scooping up three groundballs. Growney contributed three goals. Senior Dom Piselli (Rockville Centre, NY) caused three turnovers defensively. Sophomore Riley Cahill (South Glastonbury, CT) made 13 saves in the loss.
The Jumbos improved to 5-2 overall and 2-2 in NESCAC. Trinity, which has lost three in a row, is now 2-6 and 0-4.
This was the start of a busy nine days for Tufts, during which they'll play four games. They host Babson under the lights at Bello on Tuesday. Trinity is at Western Connecticut on Tuesday at 4 pm.