Falling behind early has been a constant for the USM men’s lacrosse team in losses this year, and it wasn’t any different on Tuesday.
Bates Senior Rory Cosgrove got the Bobcats ahead early and helped them stay there by scoring a game-high five goals, including four in the first half, as they defeated USM 13-6 in a non-conference game Tuesday night at Deering High School’s Memorial Field.
USM sophomores Mark White (Oakville, Ontario) and Marc Stannard (Wilder, Vt./Hartford) and freshman Dylan Bousquet-Smith (Bowdoinham, Maine/Mt. Ararat) each scored two goals for Southern Maine to counter a powerful Bates squad.
It took a few minutes for the scoring to get under way, but once the Bobcats got comfortable they were tough to stop. After trading two mammoth hits on the attacking end, USM found themselves backpedaling to defend a counter attack resulting in Bates’ first goal. USM couldn’t generate a solid offensive possession, and Bates used an arsenal of sharpshooting to go up 4-0 after the first quarter.
The two sides exchanged shots and defensive stands to start off the second. Bates eventually got their legs back and peppered Sophomore goalie Kyle Dussault (Lewiston, Maine) with shots from in close and from a distance. Dussault had 15 saves on the night despite giving up double digit goals.
Late in the first half, a pushing penalty gave the Huskies one last chance to gain some ground, but their two shots in the Bates zone sailed just wide and the score was 8-0 after two quarters.
The Bobcats wasted no time getting on the board in the second half, scoring less than two minutes in. This prompted USM to show up and play.
“We didn’t change our game plan coming out of halftime. I just told them to give me 30 hard minutes out there,” USM Head Coach Malcom Chase said after the game. “It was the first time we were able to capitalize on the opportunities we were given with those two penalties.”
The Huskies then fired off four straight goals to make the score 10-4. Bates tried countering USM’s momentum with some physical play of their own, and the game began to get chippy at the end of the third. The referees were able to get things under control, though, and dished out the necessary penalties.
In the final quarter Bates came out hot once again, scoring two goals in the first minute of resumed play. The two teams traded goals over the next ten minutes, and things became out of reach for good for the Huskies.
The loss puts the Huskies at 2-4 on the season as they start conference play in the Little East, beginning with a game at Eastern Connecticut on Saturday at 1 p.m.