The No. 12 men’s lacrosse team used six first-quarter goals and solid fundamentals throughout the game to hold off Bryant’s late comeback and register the Elis’ second win of the young season. The Yale Bulldogs (2–0, 0–0 Ivy) beat the Bryant Bulldogs (2–2, 0–0 NEC) in shots, ground balls, clears and turnovers to ensure a hard fought 9–8 win.
“I am very happy with the way that the team played,” defenseman Michael Quinn ‘16 said. “We had to fight through a lot of adversity and buckled down at the end of the game when it all mattered. It definitely was not the prettiest game and we did not execute on defense as efficiently as we hoped. We came out with the W and that’s all that matters at the end of the day.”
The opening quarter of the game saw nine of the 17 goals scored. Attackman Conrad Oberbeck ’15 scored a hat trick in the last five minutes of the period, giving Yale a 6–3 lead going into the second quarter. The junior had a team-high four points and 10 shots against Bryant. The Eli attack unit posted nine points with Brandon Mangan ’14, Jeff Cimbalista ’17 and Austin Rocco ’17 scoring. Mangan, who was named to the Tewaaraton Award watch list last Thursday, added two assists as well.
Bryant would not go away in the game, however, scoring five of the next seven goals in the contest — in large part thanks to fine play from face-off specialist Kevin Massa and goaltender Gunnar Waldt. Massa, who has 60 percent success rate, beat Dylan Levings ’14 on the day, winning 14 of 21 draws. In net, Waldt had 15 saves on the day, holding the Bulldogs to just three goals in the last 45 minutes of play despite facing 55 shots.
“It’s great to come out of that game with a tough W,” Mangan said. “However, we need to play better as the season goes on, especially in the shooting department. Nine for 55 shooting is not good enough.”
Yale stayed in the game thanks to tough defense, forcing 19 turnovers and picking up 35 ground balls. Second year starter Eric Natale ’15 posted 10 saves, four of which came in the first quarter. Yale’s netminder has double digit saves in both of the Elis’ contests this season. Short-stick defensive midfielders Mark Glicini ’16 and Alex Otero ’15, who picked up four ground balls, each had two controlled takeaways.
Yale found the final offense it needed through midfielder Colin Flaherty ’15, who also tallied a hat trick on the day. The preseason all-NEILA selection hit the back of the net on several long shots, including the game-winner with 5:31 left in the fourth quarter.
“To beat a skilled and well coached team like Bryant is a great feeling but we still have a lot of room for improvement,” Flaherty said. “Next week will be another great test as Fairfield is a good team and it is going to take another great week of practice to get us ready for Saturday.”
The Bulldogs again play on the road next Saturday against Fairfield. Face-off is set for 3 p.m.