Mass. College Lax: Bentley To Host So. N. H. In NE-10 First Round

By NoontimeSports.com 

The Bentley University men’s lacrosse team will host Southern New Hampshire tomorrow evening in the first round of the Northeast-10 Conference Tournament. And courtesy of the Bentley sports information department, here’s this evening’s release, a preview of the game:

WALTHAM, Mass. – The 2014 Northeast-10 Men’s Lacrosse Championship gets underway on Tuesday night, and the fourth-seeded Bentley Falcons will host fifth-seeded Southern New Hampshire at 7:00 pm.

The Falcons enter the postseason with records of 7-6 overall and 7-4 in the Northeast-10, and the Penmen sport marks of 7-7 and 6-5. Bentley is making its 12 appearance in the Northeast-10 playoffs in the last 14 seasons, and 16th time under head coach Jim Murphy.

The only previous postseason meeting between the two programs came in 2009, with Bentley winning a first round matchup 13-5. The Penmen won the regular season meeting this year, 8-7 on April 16. In that one, Southern attacker Cameron Joyce broke a 7-7 tie with 5:03 remaining for the winning goal.

Bentley enters the postseason with one of the stingiest defenses in Division II. They allow just 7.33 goals per game, which is seventh overall and second in the NE-10. A big part of that has been the work of goalie Josh Baker (Randolph, N.J./Randolph), whose .594 save percentage is fourth in the NE-10 and 7.98 goals against average is fifth. Also instrumental has been the play of, among others, Billy Sweeney (Garden City, N.Y./Garden City)Connor Raffety (Mercer Island, Wash./Mercer Island) and T.A. Demoulas (Lowell, Mass./Middlesex School).

Offensively, attackers Cutler Dimond (Marblehead, Mass./Tabor Academy) and Matt Brigham (Portsmouth, R.I./Portsmouth Abbey) lead the team in goals with 21 and 17, respectively. Freshmen David Phelps (Bedford, N.H./Bedford) and John Wheeler (Scarborough, Maine/Scarborough) added to the attack with 15 and 10 goals each. Wheeler also boasts a team-high 10 assists.

Southern counters with two of the NE-10’s leading goal scorers in junior Jeremy Buckley and Joyce. Buckley ranks eighth in the conference with 33 goals, and Joyce is 12th with 27. Senior Rob Murray is the team’s top distributor with 18 assists.

In goal, senior Morgan Weireter has started all 14 games and sports a .583 save percentage with an 11.02 GAA.

The other first round game on Tuesday pits third-seeded Merrimack against sixth-seeded Saint Anselm. The top two seeds, Adelphi and Le Moyne, received byes to Friday’s semifinals. The Bentley/SNHU winner will head to Long Island to play Adelphi, and the Merrimack/Saint Anselm winner heads to Syracuse to take on Le Moyne. The championship game is Sunday afternoon.

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