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Men's lacrosse turns back Nor'easters, 14-9

LEWISTON, Maine -- The Bates College men's lacrosse team fell behind 5-2 after one quarter before rebounding to win 14-9 over the University of New England in a non-conference game Wednesday evening at Garcelon Field.

Freshman Jack Allard (Ridgewood, N.J.) scored five goals, including three in Bates' 5-0 second-quarter run that regained the lead for the Bobcats. Allard totaled four goals in the second quarter. Senior Dan Hines (Manchester, Mass.) added two goals and a career-high four assists, giving him 10 assists already this season. Sophomores Jack Strain (Montclair, N.J.) and Nick Ford (Columbus, Ohio) scored two goals apiece and senior Kyle Starr (Concord, N.H.) dished out two assists for the Bobcats (2-2).

Tyler Thomas led the Nor'easters (2-2) with three goals, while Pat Wolfe and Nick Gross added two apiece and Mike Allan had a goal and an assist. Dan O'Gorman and Geoff Bruno had two assists apiece. O'Gorman also came up with a team-high eight ground balls and won 7 of 12 faceoffs, helping UNE to a 14-13 edge in that category.

Bates' transition defense effectively limited UNE to 14 clears on 27 attempts, and the Bobcats won 53 of 97 ground balls in the contest.

Jay Letendre made 14 saves for UNE; sophomore Dan Bell (Simsbury, Conn.) started in goal and made two saves for Bates, before junior Charlie Kazarian (Providence, R.I.) came on to play the final 43 minutes, making eight saves against four goals allowed in picking up the win.

Senior Andrew Berry (Westwood, Mass.) had a game- and career-high nine ground balls for Bates, and also added three caused turnovers and one assist. Junior Paul Donovan (Norwell, Mass.) won 11 of 19 faceoffs and added seven ground balls.

Bates opened up the gmae with a 2-0 lead on goals by Hines and sophomore Steven Hild (West Hartford, Conn.) in the opening seven minutes. Shortly after Hild's score, Bates turned the ball over in a failed clear attempt; Bruno picked up the loose ball and seconds later, O'Gorman fed Sam Cloutier for his fourth goal this season. UNE won the ensuing faceoff and evened the score shortly thereafter, as Thomas tallied his fifth goal on a Christopher Garber assist with 7:24 left in the first quarter.

Wolfe added back-to-back goals at the 5:43 and 3:53 marks of the quarter as the Nor'easters assumed a 4-2 lead. Bates won the next faceoff and missed on six straight shots, two of them saves for Letendre, before UNE cleared the ball with under half a minute remaining. With seven seconds to go, Mike Allan's unassisted tally made it 5-2 in UNE's favor.

Allard, who scored all three of Bates' man-up goals out of four extra-man opportunities in the game, struck for his fourth and fifth goals this season at the 11:55 and 10:18 marks of the second quarter, both following Nor'easter penalties, closing the gap to 5-4. In the fifth minute of the period, Bates tied it up on Hines' unassisted goal and then took the lead on another Allard tally, assisted by Starr. Ford made it a 5-0 Bates run with 7:52 left on Hines' third assist of the quarter.

UNE reeled Bates back in, however, as Thomas connected for two straight at 5:46 and 2:13 to retie the game at 7-7. But Bates took the lead back, for good this time, as sophomore Conor Henrie (Lexington, Mass.) struck for his second goal this season, firing an unassisted rocket past Letendre. A slashing penalty late in the half gave Bates one more man-up chance, and Allard came through with 16 seconds to go for a 9-7 Bates lead at halftime.

Only seven of the game's total 23 goals came in the second half, five of them scored by the Bobcats, beginning with Strain's back-to-back tallies to at 10:46 and 8:29 of the third quarter.

Bates returns to NESCAC play on Saturday, playing host to Wesleyan at 1pm; UNE will host MIT on Saturday at 1pm as well.