LEWISTON, Maine -- A spirited comeback attempt fell just short as the Bates College men's lacrosse team lost 14-12 to No. 8 Middlebury College in the NESCAC opener for both teams Sunday at Campus Avenue Field. The game was postponed one day due to inclement weather on Saturday.
Matt Ferrer scored five goals and added one assist for the Panthers (1-0), while Rory Sanborn and Tom Petty scored two goals apiece.
Bates senior captains Brent Morin and Mike Medeiros each had three goals and three assists to lead the host Bobcats (0-3). Les Wade and Tyler Moore both scored twice apiece.
Middlebury held a 9-4 edge at halftime and took a 13-7 lead when Jim Cabrera opened the fourth quarter with an unassisted goal with 13:23 to play.
Bates outscored Middlebury 5-1 over the next 10 minutes, including two straight by sophomore Les Wade that cut the lead bo 13-9. After Sanborn's unassisted goal bumped the Middlebury lead to 14-9, both teams went scoreless for a period of over five minutes. Then Morin found Medeiros with 5:13 left to play, and added an unassisted tally 32 seconds later to close it to 14-11.
Moore converted a Medeiros assist with 3:10 to play, cutting the Panthers' lead to 14-12, but the Panthers held off the Bobcats over the last three minutes.
Middlebury roared out to a 5-0 lead in the first quarter, with a game-opening score by Petty, two more scores by Matt Virtue and Sanborn, and two straight by Ferrer. Morin finally stemmed the bleeding by putting Bates on the scoreboard with 1:29 left in the quarter.
Shots were even for the teams at 33-33, as were faceoffs at 14-14, and Bates held a slim 29-28 edge in ground balls.
Bates senior captain Will Paddock (Denver, Colo.) made 11 saves in goal, while Peter Britt made eight saves for the Panthers.