Sports

No. 13 UMass dismantles men’s lacrosse at every turn in rout

Eleven different players pick up goals or assists for Minutemen as they roll past Bears in Providence

By
Senior Staff Writer
Monday, March 3, 2014

After a convincing win over Quinnipiac to start the season, the men’s lacrosse team ran into a brick wall Saturday — No. 13 University of Massachusetts at Amherst. In a 15-2 blowout, Bruno trailed the Minutemen in nearly every significant statistical category: shots, ground balls, shots on goal, turnovers, saves and clears.

UMass (4-0) led from the start, opening up a 4-0 lead in the first quarter. During a man-up advantage brought by a slashing penalty, forward Kylor Bellistri ’16 slotted a shot past UMass goalie Zach Oliveri to get the Bears (1-1) on the board in their home opener.

“We felt like we were still in the game,” Bellistri said of his opening goal. “Nobody was losing any hope yet because we knew there were just a few bad bounces that didn’t go our way.”

Despite the Bears’ early optimism, UMass dominated the remainder of the contest. In the second quarter, Grant Whiteway and Nick Mariano both scored on Brown’s goalie Jack Kelly ’16, who had a rough statistical afternoon in the cage. The sophomore only mustered seven saves on 18 shots on target, allowing 11 goals. After three periods, he was pulled from the game.

“After my goal, it was still a close game, but things just weren’t going our way,” Bellistri said. “A few bad bounces here and there didn’t help our cause.”

Kelly “saved the shots he’s supposed to save,” Bellistri added. “The goals don’t reflect how he played. We left him out to dry a few times, not putting ourselves in the right positions. We gave up shots in areas that we shouldn’t be letting teams shoot from.”

The second half followed similarly. Counting the two scores in the second quarter, the Minutemen scored 11 unanswered goals to balloon their lead to 15-1. Mariano finished with a game-high five goals and one assist. Eleven different UMass players contributed to the offense, picking up either a goal or assist.

With six minutes left in the final period of play, A.J. Lucchese ’17 tallied a garbage-time goal — his first as a Bear — off an assist from Dylan Molloy ’17.

Bruno struggled offensively all game, hitting the target on just 13 shots, compared to the 25 shots UMass fired on goal.

“They have a really sound defense, but things just weren’t clicking for us,” Bellistri said. “We struggled to run our plays and play our game. We didn’t do as well as we should have, so it made them seem a little stronger than they were.”

Bruno will look to get back on track Wednesday, when the University of Hartford comes to Stevenson Field. Next week, Brown will battle two non-conference opponents in its final preparation before Ivy play starts March 15 at Harvard.

Despite the tough defeat, Bellistri expressed confidence that the Bears are ready to move on from the loss to UMass and look forward to the rest of the schedule.

“This loss was a humbling experience. It’s a wake-up call,” Bellistri said. “Tomorrow is going to be a tough practice, and rightfully so, and I think we’re ready to work.”