MOUNT IDA MEN’S LACROSSE
Wednesday, April 25, 2018
Alumni Field, Newton, Mass.
FINAL: MOUNT IDA 6, JOHNSON & WALES 5
NEWTON, Mass. -- Junior Kyle Ton (Norwich, Conn.) netted a hat trick and three assists for six points to back a 16-save effort in goal from senior Cam Hayward (Derry, N.H.), as Mount Ida notched a 6-5 victory over Johnson & Wales in the Great Northeast Athletic Conference men’s lacrosse regular season finale for both schools Wednesday evening at Alumni Field.
Ton snapped a 1-1 tie midway through the second quarter to give the host Mustangs (8-8, 7-2 GNAC) the lead, but senior Eric Russo (West Grove, Pa.) tallied twice in a 50 second span to stake the visiting Wildcats (6-11, 5-4 GNAC) to their only advantage of the night with 6:13 remaining in the half. Ton collected a pair of goals in a 58 second stretch to give Mount Ida the lead for good, and junior Owen LaPorte’s (Farmington, Conn.) man-up marker a minute late extended the hosts’ edge to 5-3 at the break.
After a scoreless third stanza, the Mustangs increased their lead to 6-3 on senior Marcus Donahue’s (Braintree, Mass.) man-up goal 2:14 into the final frame, but Johnson & Wales closed back to within two on junior Ben Farrell’s (Baltimore, Md.) man-up tally with 6:27 to play. Junior Thomas Lyons (Burlington, Mass.) pulled the Wildcats within one with 44 seconds remaining, but a key face-off win by Mount Ida senior Alex Zito (Andover, Conn.) allowed the hosts to run the clock down to the final seconds, as the visitors were unable to advance for a tying attempt.
Donahue and freshman Mike Alibrandi (Holliston, Mass.) each added a goal and an assist in the triumph for the Mustangs, who also received a helper from junior Shayne Rix (Westwood, Mass.). Russo added an assist to his tallies to finish with three points in the setback for the Wildcats, who received a pair of goals from Farrell along with a helper off the stick of senior Sam Sears (Baltimore, Md.).
Hayward made 12 of his saves in the opening 30 minutes of action while earning his eighth win of the season and 35th of his career in net for Mount Ida, while sophomore Bradley Morris (East Longmeadow, Mass.) made four stops in the setback for Johnson & Wales. The Wildcats outshot the Mustangs by a 37-21 margin overall (21-10 on goal) and held an 8-7 edge in the face-off circle for the contest.
Mount Ida and Johnson & Wales will meet once again in quarterfinal round action of the Great Northeast Athletic Conference championships on Saturday afternoon at Alumni Field, as the Mustangs are seeded third and the Wildcats sixth in this year's tournament. Complete playoff pairings and start times will be announced by the league office on Thursday.
(Photo Credit: Karen Zito)