Amherst junior Greg Donohue (left, checking Bowdoin’s Alex Weaver) scooped up five ground balls and helped key the defense on Sunday.
Griffith's Game-Winner Leads Jeffs to 6-5 NESCAC Quarterfinal Win Over Bowdoin
May 2, 2004
AMHERST, MA - Junior Colby Griffith (Lexington, MA) netted the game-winning score with 2:09 left in regulation to lead the Amherst College men’s lacrosse team to a 6-5 NESCAC Tournament Quarterfinal victory over visiting Bowdoin College on Sunday. The Jeffs advance to the conference semifinals next weekend, where they’ll face top-seeded host Middlebury College.
Both teams’ defenses were smothering in the opening frame as the Jeffs’ only score came on an unassisted tally from junior Joaquin Walker (Denver, CO), while sophomore Connor Fitzgerald (Hingham, MA) found the goal for the visitors.
Amherst senior co-captain Mike Allison (W. Nyack, NY) posted an unassisted score just 48 seconds into the second session, and sophomore Sean Murray (Madison, NJ) pushed the lead to two with an overhand rip from the left side at the 8:16-mark. Polar Bear sophomore Andy Nelson (Marston Mills, MA) pulled the visitors back within one before the half off an assist from Fitzgerald.
The Jeffs regained their two-goal edge 4:30 into the third quarter as Allison found first-year Chris Hofmann (New Canaan, CT) in the middle for the score. However, Bowdoin rallied for a pair of scores to even the count at 4-4 at the end of the frame. Fitzgerald capitalized on a fast-break opportunity for the first score and first-year Alex Weaver (Cape Elizabeth, ME) took a feed from sophomore Chris Eaton (Amherst, NH) for the second.
Junior Graham Lake (Washington, DC) put the Jeffs back on top, bouncing a shot from the left side at the 9:44-mark, but Bowdoin answered with a man-advantage score from Fitzgerald to tie the game with 4:37 remaining. The Jeffs won a loose ball in the midfield with just under three minutes left in regulation and immediately called timeout to set up an offensive play. They wasted no time out of the break as Allison fed Griffith high on the left side, where he fired a rocket to put the Jeffs up for good. The Polar Bears regained possession in the final minute, causing a turnover and clearing the ball to their offensive end, but Amherst junior goalie Cushing Donelan (Noroton, CT) made two key saves in the final 30 seconds to seal the victory.
Donelan finished with 15 stops, while sophomore Raul Altreche (Bronx, NY) stepped in for 1:20 in the second quarter and nabbed a key save as Amherst improved to 11-4. Senior Grant White (Charlottesville, VA) collected eight for Bowdoin, which finishes its season 9-5.
2004 NESCAC Championship Tournament
First Round - Sunday, May 2, 2004 (1 p.m.)
No. 1 Middlebury - bye
No. 7 Conn. College 7 - No. 2 Tufts 9
No. 6 Trinity 7 - No. 3 Wesleyan 8
No. 5 Bowdoin 5 - No. 4 Amherst 6
Semifinals - Saturday, May 8, 2004 at Middlebury College
No. 1 Middlebury vs. No. 4 Amherst (Noon)
No. 2 Tufts vs. No. 3 Wesleyan (3 p.m.)
Finals - Sunday, May 9, 2004 at Middlebury College
Semifinal winners (Noon)