Men's lacrosse tripped up by No. 7 Bates in NESCAC action

Eric Zurmuehle '18 (Josh McKee photo)
Eric Zurmuehle '18 (Josh McKee photo)

Bates College held the Hamilton College Continentals without a goal for nearly 41 minutes and the nationally ranked No. 7 Bobcats posted an 11-3 NESCAC win at Hamilton's Steuben Field on Saturday afternoon.

Bates (8-1, 4-1 NESCAC) picked up its fourth straight win and allowed a season-low three goals. The lone blemish on the Bobcats' season is a 14-9 loss at Amherst College back on March 12.

The Continentals (3-5, 1-4) played a ranked opponent for the fourth time in their last five games.

Hamilton's Sam Sweet '16 scored a goal and added an assist. Sweet leads the Continentals with 18 goals and 11 assists. Clay McCollum '19 notched his 12th goal and J.D. Brachman '17 tallied his 14th this year. Joe Ricciuti '16 picked up his second assist.

Eric Zurmuehle '18 won 11 of 17 faceoffs and scooped up eight ground balls for Hamilton. Zurmuehle entered the day ninth in Division III in faceoff percentage at nearly 70 percent and third in ground balls with more than 10 per game.

John Schisler '17 was spectacular at times in goal for the Continentals and finished with 15 saves, including seven in the third period.

For Bates, Max Breschi scored four goals and Jack Allard contributed three more to go with an assist. Charlie Hildebrand chipped in one goal and two assists, and Jake Walsh and Andrew Melvin had one goal and one helper apiece. Fred Ulbrick paced the Bobcats defense with three caused turnovers and four ground balls, and Mitchell Drake made seven stops in his first career start in goal. Ken O'Friel won four faceoffs and collected four ground balls.

Bates trailed 2-1 after one quarter but the Bobcats started to assert themselves in the second. Kyle Weber tied the score on his 12th goal with 11:55 left and Breschi put Bates in the lead for good with 8:10 remaining. Walsh scored with 4:03 to go and Breschi made it 5-2 on a man-up goal with 45 seconds left. The Bobcats were 4-for-6 on extra-man opportunities.

Bates scored three times in the last 2:19 of the third quarter and led 8-2 after 45 minutes. Allard had two of the three goals, including one with 2.3 seconds remaining.

Allard gave the Bobcats a 9-2 cushion on his third straight goal with 11:01 to go in the fourth quarter. Breschi capped the nine-goal run on his third of the day 75 seconds later. Sweet ended Hamilton's drought with 7:07 left when he fired a shot into the back of the net from the left side.

In the first quarter, Brachman put the Continentals up 1-0 a little less than two minutes into the contest. Hildebrand tied the score with a man-up goal midway through the quarter and Sweet found McCollum for a 2-1 Hamilton advantage with 2:37 remaining.

The men's lacrosse team, led by Matt Hermann '17, used today's game against Bates as an opportunity to raise money and awareness for the non-profit organization No One Left Behind.

No One Left Behind was started by Matt Zeller '04, who served in the U.S. military. Matt's life was saved by his interpreter in 2008, and Afghan and Iraqi interpreters have saved the lives of a number of American troops over the course of several years. Matt started No One Left Behind to help interpreters and their families get visas to the United States. Additionally, No One Left Behind helps interpreters with temporary housing and job searches and even reconnects them with the U.S. military members with whom they served.

A GoFundMe link (https://www.gofundme.com/d8v63tuk) has been created for No One Left Behind and more than $4,500 has already been raised. Anyone interested in more information about the organization can also go to their website (nooneleft.org).

The Continentals host Middlebury College for another conference game on Wednesday, April 6, at Campus Road Athletic Complex at 5 p.m.