Providence Holds on to Top Sacred Heart

Providence at Duke 3-1-15

The Providence College men’s lacrosse team defeated Sacred Heart, 11-8, today (Mar. 5) in Fairfield, Conn.

The Pioneers got on the board first with back-to-back unanswered goals in the first quarter. Before the first quarter (5:36) came to a close, junior Keenan Assaraf (Rancho Santa Fe, Calif.) registered the first Friar goal of the game to make it 2-1 in favor of Sacred Heart.

At 10:45 in the second quarter, the Pioneers tallied another goal to make the score 3-1. Providence then recorded three unanswered goals to close out the quarter. Two of those goals came from senior Will Mazzone (Stony Brook, N.Y.), while the other tally came from last weeks’ BIG EAST weekly honor roll honoree, sophomore Connor Byrne (Hicksville, N.Y.). The Friars entered the half with a 4-3 lead.

Sacred Heart got the equalizer (4-4) within the first two minutes (13:07) of the third quarter, with Byrne retaliating soon after to regain Providence’s lead (5-4).

The Pioneers registered one more goal in the third quarter, which was followed by four Friar goals. The first of the four went to junior Ryan Schaffer (Plano, Texas) off of a feed from freshman Brendan Kearns (Wantagh, N.Y.) at 9:31. The second went to senior Michael Perettine (Farmingdale, N.Y.) from freshman Joseph McHale (Bernardsville, N.Y.). The third goal went to Assaraf at 00:12, which was his second of the game, while the fourth goal went to sophomore Ian Grey (Clifton Park, N.Y.) with just seconds (00:00) to spare on the clock. The Friars went into the final quarter with a 9-5 advantage.

Sacred Heart tried to make a comeback entering the fourth quarter with back-to-back-to-back unanswered goals to make the score 9-8, but the Friars held onto their lead, and extended it (11-8), with goals from Kearns and freshman Duncan McGinnis (Menlo-Atherton, Calif.) to close out the game.

All-in-all, Byrne, Mazzone and Assaraf each had two-goal games, while freshman Alex George (Simsbury, Conn.) picked up six ground balls for Providence.

“Today was another hard fought win on the road versus a strong Sacred Heart team,” said head coach Chris Gabrielli. “The third quarter proved to be the difference, as we hunkered down defensively and scored in transition, man-up and six versus six. March is already here and we must continue to improve in all aspect of play.”

The Friars will return to action next week when they travel to High Point, N.C. on March 12 for a match-up against High Point at 11:00 a.m.