Derek Cherney '07
Photo by Sam Masinter
Will Ferrer scored a goal in the conference opener for Amherst

Jeffs Hold Off Bates for 7-6 Win to Open NESCAC Play

March 24, 2007

AMHERST, MA – The Amherst College men’s lacrosse team held off a fourth-quarter comeback from Bates to take its conference opener 7-6 this afternoon at UMass’s Garber Field. After falling behind 1-0 in the first period, Amherst responded with four unanswered goals to take a commanding lead. The Jeffs held a 6-3 halftime lead, but the Bobcats rallied late in the game to close the gap to one.

After surrendering the game’s first goal at the 6:49 mark of the first period, Amherst looked like they might be in store for a defensive battle. The Lord Jeffs’ offense eventually opened up, as Amherst scored four unanswered goals to end the first quarter and start the second frame.

Points-leader Derek Cherney (Chappaqua, NY) put Amherst on board with a nice dodge to the left side of the cage, where he ripped a high-to-high left-handed crank to the far upper corner. First-year attacker Thomas McDonnell (Manhasset, NY) would not be outdone by the veteran, as he tacked on two consecutive goals of his own for Amherst.

 First-year John-Thomas Milone (Manhasset, NY), sophomore Brett Miller (Wantagh, NY) and junior Will Ferrer (Greenwich, CT) would all chip in on offense in the first half as they each netted a single goal.

Amherst headed into the second half holding a strong 6-3 lead, and just 0:49 seconds into the third period, the Jeffs made it 7-4 when McDonnell found the net for his third goal of the game. While Amherst scored 7 goals in just over a period and a half, they would go the remaining 29:11 of the game scoreless.

Bates made the game interesting in the fourth quarter when they stepped up their work on ground balls, and won a few face offs. Amherst goaltender Matt Pietroforte (Brooklyn, NY) made 25 saves in net for Amherst, and made the big stops when it counted, including an amazing stick save on a fast break, and a clamp in the final 0:10 seconds.

Amherst moves to 2-2 on the year, and is 1-0 in NESCAC play. The Jeffs will travel to face Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, NY on Tuesday for a 5:00 p.m. game.