Eastern never trails in 14-7 season-opening victory at Washington

CHESTERTOWN — The box score suggested a closely contested men’s lacrosse game Saturday between host Washington and Eastern.

The scoreboard suggested otherwise.

Eastern led from start to finish, opening the second half with six unanswered goals on the way to a 14-7 victory in the first game of the season for both schools.

Connor Bachmann, Nick Litzenberger (one assist) and Brett Williamson each recorded hat tricks and Gavin Stark (one goal) assisted three times to help make a winner of Colin Piper in his head coaching debut at alma mater Eastern.

Also for the Eagles, graduate student Patrick McClain won 14 of 24 face-offs and picked up a game-high 11 ground balls.

John Nostrant is beginning his third year as head coach at alma mater Washington.

Junior attackman Ben Dickinson netted three goals (on a game-high 12 shots) as the only multiple scorer for Washington’s men.

Sophomore attackman Cam Carrigan (Jarrettsville, John Carroll High School) was one-and-one for the Shoremen.

Bachmann’s solo run with 5 minutes, 33 seconds elapsed gave Eastern a 1-0 lead that it never surrendered.

The spread was 4-2 at the end of one quarter and 8-6 at halftime after each side scored four second-quarter goals.

Washington closed out the first-half scoring on a 3-1 run, which included a pair of Dickinson tallies.

Dickinson’s goal off a look from Carrigan with 2:39 remaining in the half was the Shoremen’s only man-up score in seven chances.

Bachmann, a graduate student, scored both of Eastern’s third-quarter goals to extend the spread to 10-6 with 15 minutes to play.

The Eagles scored four goals in a row to open the final frame — two apiece from Litzenberger and Williamson — to increase the lead to 14-6 with 2:25 remaining.

Washington halted the lengthy scoreless stretch with a Luke Brennan-to-Mac Hale goal with only 50 seconds to play.

Eastern led 40-37 in shots and 15-10 in face-offs, while Washington had a 39-36 edge in ground balls.

For Washington, senior Gabe Velasquez won nine of 19 face-offs and freshman Colin Gray (Annapolis, Broadneck) was credited with 11 saves in his collegiate debut.

NEXT UP: The Shoremen (0-1) travel to Washington & Lee for another non-conference game on Saturday afternoon, Feb. 24.

The No. 7-ranked Generals (0-1) are coming off a 16-15 season-opening loss at No. 14 York after being held to two goals over the final 23:45.

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