Offensive explosion pays dividends in Merrimack’s win over Quinnipiac


Jack Muscatello

The Quinnipiac men’s lacrosse team ends its out-of-conference schedule with a 2-2 record.

Ethan Hurwitz, Sports Editor

HAMDEN, Conn – In the first time these schools have matched up in 25 years, the Quinnipiac men’s lacrosse team fell to the Merrimack Warriors 16-8 Sunday afternoon. Merrimack’s consistent offensive attack (39 total shots) was too much for the Bobcats, as they drop to 2-2 on the year.

Just past the three-minute mark, Merrimack sophomore attack Brian Russell found twine for his 15th goal of the season for the quick 1-0 lead. Not to be outdone, Quinnipiac junior attack Dylan Donnery scored twice within a minute to grab the lead back. 

Following two more Warriors goals, a physical first quarter ended with the visitors holding onto a 3-2 lead. The referees were involved throughout, as the Bobcats supporters were irate all afternoon after some questionable non-calls on the Warriors.

“It’s something we coach up,” Quinnipiac head coach Mason Poli said. “The refs aren’t going to adapt to us, we have to adapt to the refs. They were quick to pull the laundry, quick to call the physicality … (we) can’t really control them.”

The second quarter started perfectly for the Bobcats. Graduate student midfielder Demitri George won the opening faceoff and was tripped down the sideline. On the ensuing man-up advantage, junior midfielder Steven Germain struck gold for his ninth goal of the young season.

After two tough penalties on the Bobcats, Merrimack freshman midfielder Kasey Mongillo took matters into his own hands. The North Haven, Connecticut, native fired a bullet past graduate student goaltender Nick DiMuccio for a goal and then almost instantly, scored a second to build onto the Warriors’ lead. 

Trying to combat the Merrimack barrage, Quinnipiac quickly went on the offensive. Goals from Donnery and junior attack Trey Gehen pulled the Bobcats closer. They then took a massive step back, as freshman long stick midfielder Tommy Andruzzi was called for both a tripping and holding penalty on the same play, allowing the Warriors to steal another man-up goal.

Russell’s goal was good for Merrimack’s eighth goal of the afternoon and the visitors went into the locker room up by three. 

To open up the second half, Quinnipiac freshman midfielder Luke Hendricks went to the locker room after exiting the game with an apparent left wrist injury. He would later return.

Just past the halfway point of the third quarter, Merrimack junior goaltender Henry Vogt began to take over. He saved shots left and right, en route to 18 saves, second-most by him all season.

“You got to differentiate your takes, they are not all going to fall,” Poli said. “I thought early on, we had some really good takes, (Vogt) had some really good saves.”

Donnery later fired a shot past Vogt, breaking a long scoreless streak for the Bobcats. The fourth goal of the day was a new season-high for the junior and good for second-most throughout his Quinnipiac career. 

“He’s been phenomenal, to come out of the gate like he has and to have the shooting percentage,” Poli said. “Really quick at getting the ball in and out of his stick … we are going to rely on him as we start conference play.”\

Goals from Mongillo, sophomore midfielder Trace Hogan and freshman midfielder KJ Delane increased the Warriors’ lead to seven, a score that they would not give up. With nine minutes remaining, some fiery emotions were let out on the sideline and both teams started to get extremely physical. Both sides were eventually separated by an official.

Despite a late goal from senior attack John DeLucia made the game look better on the scoreboard, but the Bobcats’ lone goal in the fourth quarter was the final memorable moment in the loss.  

“It’s an up-and-down year, I think we came out hot,” Poli said. ”Recently struggling to get some momentum … we still like what we have in the locker room and still like all the pieces we have.”

The Bobcats will now enter conference play with a home matchup against Canisius on Saturday, March 11. The opening faceoff is set for 12 p.m., as Quinnipiac looks to win its first game since Feb. 18 against Brown.