DUDLEY, Mass. – The Nichols College men's lacrosse team scored nine second-half goals to come back from a three-goal halftime deficit and defeat Wentworth, 10-6, in the The Commonwealth Coast Conference opener for both teams Saturday afternoon at Vendetti Field. Nichols improves to 2-1 overall while Wentworth evens out at 1-1 on the season.
Tim Ahern (Boca Raton, Fla.) had two goals and an assist for the Bison, while Ryan Pacific (Danbury, Conn.) and Bradley O'Brien (Danbury, Conn.) added three points with a goal and a pair of assists. Brian Gattie (Plainfield, N.H.) scored twice, and Brian Girard (Norwood, Mass.) recorded his first career goal.
Leading the way for Wentworth was Chris Guilherme (Derry, N.H.) with two goals. Christopher Kipp (Scarborough, Maine) added a goal and an assist, while Jeff Guilherme (Derry, N.H.) registered a pair of assists.
Wentworth strode out to a 4-0 lead by the 9:02 mark of the second quarter, scoring two man-up goals before goaltender Matt O'Connor (Duxbury, Mass.) capped the scoring by carrying the ball to midfield before passing ahead to Greg Ordway (Freeport, Maine) for a quick goal. Nichols' Matthew Caulfield (Fairfield, Conn.) put the Bison on the board before halftime off an assist from Ahern to make it 4-1 Leopards at the break.
O'Brien connected with Austin Healy (Westford, Mass.) to cut Wentworth's lead in half to start the third quarter and after Jeff Guilherme found Matt Cox (Granger, Ind.) for one more Wentworth strike, the Bison went on a seven-goal spree.
Pacific and Gattie connected for two goals just over a minute apart late in the third quarter to give the Bison their first lead of the game, 6-5, and a man-up goal from Ahern followed to start the final frame. Pacific and Macaulay Gillis (Northborough, Mass.) added unassisted strikes to make it 9-5 by the 8:47 mark of the fourth quarter before Max Blum (New Fairfield, Conn.) broke Nichols' stride with a goal with 3:24 left to play. O'Brien capped the scoring with just over a minute to play.
Nichols goalkeeper Scott Gray (Annapolis, Md.) made 14 saves in the win, his second of the season. O'Connor stopped eight shots and allowed nine goals in 58 minutes before giving way to Jeff Bathalon (Maynard, Mass.).
The Bison held a 40-31 advantage in ground balls, but were outshot, 34-27, in the game. Each team had 15 successful clear attempts. Nichols' Tim Dooley (Tewskbury, Mass.) won 11 of 18 faceoffs against the Leopards' Mike Sharpe (Needham, Mass.).
The Bison are back in action on Thursday, March 24, in a 6 p.m. game at Anna Maria. Wentworth travels to New England College Thursday for a 4 p.m. game.
-Release Courtesy of Nichols Sports Information-