Quinnipiac men’s lacrosse suffers first loss of season against Bryant Saturday


Jack Muscatello

Quinnipiac men’s lacrosse falls to 2-1 on the season with Saturday’s loss to Bryant.

Zack Hochberg, Staff Writer

HAMDEN, Conn – The Quinnipiac men’s lacrosse team never led the entire game, snapping its two-game win streak in a 19-12 loss to Bryant Saturday afternoon.

The Bobcats turned it over 15 times in the first half, and couldn’t keep Bryant contained in the defensive zone, allowing their most goals this season. 

“I thought earlier in the game we didn’t take care of the ball … we gave them transition opportunities where they were able to separate,” Quinnipiac head coach Mason Poli said. 

Bryant got off to a phenomenal start as senior attacker Kevin Groeninger got the scoring started just 48 seconds in, followed by another from freshman attacker Johnny Hackett to give the visitors a 2-0 lead. 

Quinnipiac senior attacker John DeLucia got the home crowd into it, putting the Bobcats on the board for the first time five minutes in, as the Connecticut native cleaned up a loose ball in front. 

Every time the Bobcats would score in the first quarter, the Bulldogs would respond with two goals of their own. Groeninger and Hackett both combined for three more goals in the opening quarter to give Bryant a 6-3 advantage after 15 minutes. 

The second quarter continued to go back-and-forth, as Bryant scored two more early, but Quinnipiac was able to match with two of its own to stay within striking distance. 

Quinnipiac’s defense let down graduate student goaltender Nick DiMuccio, who made 18 saves in the contest, but couldn’t handle the onslaught of shots as the Bulldogs easily penetrated the Bobcat defense. 

“They (Bryant) are a very athletic group,” Poli said. “At times I don’t think we were organized enough or they were just getting to spots and we were a little slow on those slides … they were getting into those danger areas and those low angle shots that you hope your goalie can steal one or two more.”

The Bulldogs were able to outscore the Bobcats 5-3 in the second frame to take an 11-6 lead into the half, led by Groeninger and Hackett who each had hat tricks. 

Bryant opened the third on a man-advantage, which Hackett utilized for his fourth goal of the day. On the other hand, the Bobcats got a two-man advantage for 30 seconds, which the Bulldogs effectively defended, much to the delight of their bench.

Continuing the back-and-forth affair, the hosts were able to pull back within five after a goal from junior attacker Dylan Donnery, but, once again, Hackett was there to give Bryant another goal, his fifth of the afternoon. However, Bobcats’ junior midfielder Evan Perry struck back just 30 seconds later, as his squad continued to try to mount a comeback. 

With Bryant netting one more in the third to take a 14-8 lead into the fourth quarter, a Quinnipiac comeback seemed unlikely.  

Hackett essentially put the final nail in the coffin, scoring his sixth of the game, beating DiMuccio from the right side to push the Bryant advantage up to seven.

The Bobcats continued to battle, but a goal from midfield by freshman long-stick midfielder Luke Mead essentially summed up how their afternoon went, as Bryant was able to come into Hamden and down the undefeated Bobcats, 19-12. 

Quinnipiac will look to avenge today’s loss when it hosts Merrimack on March 4 at noon for its final game before MAAC play begins on March 11.