MISENHEIMER, N.C. – Fourth-ranked Merrimack used a 5-0 third quarter to run past 12th-ranked Pfeiffer University 11-8 in non-conference men’s lacrosse action Wednesday at N.E. Lefko Field. The Warriors took advantage of key turnovers and cashed them into second half goals improving to 4-1 on the year. The Falcons see their seven-game win streak come to an end falling to 8-2.
Both teams were even after the first 30 minutes with a 5-5 game at the break. Zac Clark (Corning, NY) started the scoring at the 11:21 mark of the first quarter only to see the Warriors Nick Maggio (Winchester, MA) win the faceoff, scoop up the groundball and score just nine seconds later. Merrimack’s Michael Balbuena (Falmouth, MA) made it a 2-1 lead with 9:48 to go in the first before Pfeiffer reeled off the next three to grab a 4-2 advantage.
Steven Tilmon put home the first of his three on the day with 5:51 to play while Kory Lutes (Orlando, FL) and Justin Rose (Rochester, NY) followed for the two-goal margin. Merrimack’s Corey Lunney (Little Silver, NJ) would roar back with seven ticks left in the first to make it a 4-3 Pfeiffer lead through one.
In the second, Brad McAdam (Neshanic Station, NJ) tied it on a breakaway goal with 5:36 on the clock before the Falcons regained the lead on another Rose strike just 28 seconds later. The Warriors’ Terence Barclay (Babylon, NY) closed out the first half scoring with 100 seconds left for the 5-5 halftime score.
Jordan Tiger (Ridgefield, CT) would open up second half scoring for the Warriors just 1:38 in before Nick Vazquez (Haverhill, MA) went on a personal tear scoring three of the next four goals to provide the separation. Barclay would find the back of the net again after Vazquez’s first, before the sophomore tallied the next two for a 10-5 visitors lead through three.
Pfeiffer tried to make a fourth quarter push with a man-up goal from Rose and another tally by Tilmon just 43 seconds apart three minutes in, but Balbuena would stifle the momentum with his final goal at 9:54. Tilmon added one more late strike for the final three-goal differential.
Vazquez led the Warriors with his hat trick while Maggio would win 19 of the 23 face-offs and scoop up a game-high seven groundballs. Goalkeeper Connor Reagan (East Lyme, CT) would make four saves in the win. Rose and Tilmon each scored three to lead Pfeiffer while Matthew Rabung (Purcellville, VA) scooped up a team-high five groundballs. Netminder Hayden Kirk (Farmingdale, NY) stopped 13 Warrior shots in the loss.
Pfeiffer will get back to league action Saturday traveling to #8 Queens for a 4:30 p.m. showdown with the Royals.