Early Offense, Strong, 60-Minute Defense Leads Men's Lacrosse Over Host Richmond, 9-5

Early Offense, Strong, 60-Minute Defense Leads Men's Lacrosse Over Host Richmond, 9-5

Richmond, Va. – UMBC junior midfielder Jack Gannon (Lake Ronkonkoma, N.Y.) scored three goals and added an assist and red-shirt sophomore goalkeeper Connon Gordon (Bourne, Mass.) turned aside 13 Richmond shots as the Retrievers never trailed in a 9-5 victory at Robins Stadium.


UMBC, which capped a season-opening four-game road swing with the victory, has now won two straight and improves to 2-2 on the campaign. Richmond, which received votes in all three intercollegiate lacrosse polls this week, fell to 2-2.


The Retrievers used a strong first half to build a 7-2 advantage and never led the Spiders get within four goals in the second half.


The Spiders were averaging 11.3 goals per game entering the contest.


"I am very pleased with our performance today," said head coach Don Zimmerman. "I thought we continued to play good individual and team defense and I liked the way we came out from the opening whistle, were aggressive and played together."


UR midfielder Mitch Goldberg scored his 12th goal of the season 90 seconds into the game, but UMBC went on a 5-0 run over the next 15 minutes to take command. Junior midfielder Pat Young (Ewing, N.J.) tied the game just 75 seconds later and then Gannon would score a natural hat trick with the final three goals of the first quarter. Gannon, who has played sparingly due to injuries in 2015, posted unassisted scores at the 11:57, 7:00 and 2:28-minute marks of the quarter to give the Retrievers a 4-1 lead after 15 minutes.


UMBC senior midfielder Conor Finch (Westminster, Md./Boys Latin) capped the scoring run with his first goal of the season just 1:28 into the second quarter. Richmond got a goal back, but junior attackman Nate Lewnes (Arnold, Md./St. Mary's) scored at the midpoint of the stanza and sophomore attackman Max Maxwell (Hamburg, N.Y.) converted a Gannon feed on a man-up opportunity with 6:05 to play in the half to give the visitors a 7-2 lead at the break.


Maxwell and Young opened the third and fourth quarters with goals and the Retriever defense allowed only two UR replies until the Spiders scored their fifth goal with only 36 seconds remaining.


Young bounced back from a scoreless performance in last week's 4-2 win at Monmouth with two goals and one assist and Maxwell scored his first two goals of the season.


Goldberg, who scored five times versus Marquette last Sunday and was eighth in the nation in goals per game, was held without a goal after his opening tally .


Gordon made seven first half saves and six second half stops to finish with a season-best 13 saves. UR outshot UMBC, 35-27, and two UR goalies amassed six saves.


UMBC scored on two-of-three extra-man opportunities, while Richmond converted on one-of-three. Eighteen draws were split evenly in sub-freezing temperatures in Richmond.


"I'm happy that our offense started to produce and get back on track." Zimmerman said. "But we've always felt that if we can play good solid team defense, we can be in every ball game. Overall, it was a terrific team effort against a very good Richmond team on the road."


The Retrievers will play their first contest at UMBC Stadium in 2015 when they welcome Towson on Saturday March 7. The opening face-off is slated for 1:00 p.m.