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No. 7 Tufts overcomes early deficit to top men's lacrosse

Luke Charest '11 is second on the Bobcats in scoring with 19 points (five goals, 14 assists).

LEWISTON, Maine -- No. 7 nationally ranked Tufts University overcame a 5-3 deficit after one quarter by outscoring the Bates College men's lacrosse team 9-1 over the final three quarters for a 12-6 NESCAC victory Thursday night at Campus Avenue Field.

Senior Evan Bagley (Cape Elizabeth, Maine) and junior Luke Charest (Freeport, Maine) scored two goals apiece for the Bobcats (4-5, 0-5 NESCAC), with Bagley adding in one assist.

Matt Witko scored a game-high four goals for the Jumbos, who remain undefeated at 8-0 overall and 4-0 in NESCAC play. D.J. Hessler scored once and handed out three assists, and both Kevin McCormick and Ryan Molloy scored two goals apiece.

Bates controlled faceoffs by a 15-7 margin but turned the ball over 33 times to Tufts' 24. The Jumbos held a slight 38-37 edge in shots.

Tufts went up 2-0 early on, but Bates scored four unanswered goals to make it 4-2. Back-to-back goals by Charest gave Bates its first lead at 3-2, and Bagley's second goal made it 4-2. Witko scored on a Hessler feed with 5:25 left in the quarter, but Bates freshman Rob Highland (Yarmouth, Maine) bumped it to 5-3 on an assist by George O'Connor.

The Jumbos evened the game 5-5 in the second quarter on goals by McCormick and Molloy. Bates sophomore Jason Hichborn (Yarmouth, Maine) scored his 10th goal of the season to give Bates the lead back at 6-5, but it would be the Bobcats' last lead of the game. Hessler feld Molloy with 4:38 let in the second quarter to make it 6-6, and the score stayed there into the intermission.

The Jumbos dominated the second half, outscoring the Bobcats 3-0 in both the third and fourth quarters.

Tufts goalie Steven Foglietta came on in relief of starter Bryan Petillo and, combined with a stifling Jumbo defense, shut the Bobcat offense down, turning back 10 shots and allowing one goal in 45 minutes of work.

Bates sophomore goalie Adam Scharff (Glyndon, Md.) made seven saves, including a handful of particularly tough ones during the second half.

Bates plays another NESCAC game on Saturday at Connecticut College, starting at 1 p.m. Tufts hosts Trinity at the same time.

Stats and Play by Play: Tufts 12, Bates 6