The Wilmington University men’s lacrosse team had plenty of offensive fire power in their season opening 14-10 win vs the Montreat College Cavaliers in Montreat, North Carolina.
Two WilmU players had a hat trick in the win and they were junior midfielder Jake Walsh (3) and senior attacker Sean Sheehan (4).
Along with three goals, Walsh had one assist, eight shots, five shots on goal, one turnover and one caused turnover.
Along with four goals, Sheehan had six shots, five shots on goal, one ground ball and six turnovers.
There were four other Wildcats who scored goals in the win and they were sophomore attacker Austin Wood (2), senior midfielder Chris Smith (2), freshman midfielder TJ Maiura (1) and senior attacker Dylan McCleaft (2).
Freshman midfielder Anton Mackey picked up 11 ground balls in Wilmington’s win.
Wildcats sophomore goal keeper Noah Given had a rough day but hung in there with giving up 10 goals, had five saves and 15 shots in 60 minutes.
Wildcats Sheehan Scores Three Goals In Action Packed First Period
The first period both teams came out ready to get the scoring going as they combined for eight goals in the period.
The first period started with Montreat getting the first goal on the board with Jacob Buchman scoring a goal at the 11:38 minute mark.
Wilmington would answer with a score of their own which started off with Anton Mackey wining the face off and picking up the ground ball.
Dylan McCleaft would score the first goal of the game for the Wildcats which was assisted by Austin Wood and tied the game up at one with 10:47 left in the first period.
Wilmington would win the face off again and Mackey would pick up another ground ball in the period.
WilmU would get the clear and Jake Walsh would miss his attempt at a goal but would assist Sean Sheehan with a goal which would give the Wildcats a 2-1 lead with 10:24 left in the period.
It would not take the Cavaliers long to answer back as the team tied the game at two with 9:43 left in the period when Riggs Wolf would score a goal. The goal was assisted by John Ferris.
Then the Wildcats clawed back with Mackey winning another face off and picking up his third ground ball.
As Wilmington cleared the ball, McCleaft would assist Sheehan for his second straight goal of the period which would give WilmU a 3-2 lead with 9:08 left in the first period.
WilmU won their second straight face-off with Mackey and Wood picked up the ground ball.
Wildcats Chris Smith would attempt a shot at the Cavaliers goal but their goalie made sure it would not go on in as he recorded a save.
Sheehan would score his third straight goal of the period with the assist from junior midfielder Ralph Ruggiero which would give the Wildcats a 4-2 lead with 7:46 left in the period.
Montreat would not be deterred as the team capitalized on Wilmington’s two turnovers on their next scoring drive where Cody Bischoff scored to decrease WilmU’s lead to 4-2 with 6:06 left in the first period.John Ferris would record his second assist in the first period for the Cavaliers on this drive.
Wilmington would answer back by winning the face off and Walsh would give his team their fifth goal of the period with 5:47 left in the period.
The Wildcats would end the first period with a 5-3 lead over Montreat.
Wilmington Scores Three More Goals to End With Halftime Lead
The second period started out with the Cavaliers Joshua Brown scoring a goal which decreased Wilmington’s lead to 5-4.
Wilmington would win the next face-off with Anton Mackey winning his fourth ground ball of the game.
Then Dylan McCleaft would score to give WilmU a 6-4 lead with 9:53 left in the half.
Montreat would answer back with Riggs Wolf assisting Chris Jackson on a goal to decrease Wildcats lead to 6-5 with 9:38 left in the half.
WilmU was not giving away their lead that fast as McCleaft would assist Jake Walsh on a goal which would put their team up 7-5 with 3:50 left in the half.
Wilmington would end the half with freshman midfielder Matt Browne assisting Austin Wood on a late score which would give their team a 8-5 lead.
Wilmington Scores Two Goals In Third Period To Hold On To Lead
The third period would start with Sean Sheehan scoring his fourth goal of the game to give the Wildcats a 9-5 lead.
Wilmington would waste no time in scoring another goal which Matt Browne assisted Chris Smith on and that would give their team a 10-5 lead.
Cavaliers would answer back with scoring two goals of their own with one by Chris Jackson and another by Joshua Brown to decrease Wilmington’s lead to 10-7.
WilmU Scores Four Goals In Fourth Period To Seal Win
The fourth period would start with Wilmington’s Dylan McCleaft assisting TJ Maiura on a goal which gave their team a 11-7 lead.
Chris Smith would add an another goal to his name when he scored a goal to increase WilmU’s lead to 12-7 with 8:30 left in the game.
Montreat never one to give up, scored a goal at the 5:38 mark which was thanks to Joshua Brown who decreased Wilmington’s lead to 12-8.
Wilmington would answer back with a goal of their own with McCleaft assisting Wood on a goal to increase their team’s lead to 13-8 with 3:49 left.
Cavaliers Brown would add another goal to his name when he scored to decrease Wildcats lead to 13-9 with 2:28 left in the game.
Jake Walsh would score WilmU’s last goal of the game as their lead increased to 14-9 with 1:30 left in the game.
Montreat would score one last goal but Wilmington would hang on to win 14-10 in the season opener.
Wildcats stay on the road to take on Lees-McRae on February 23rd at 3:00pm ET.
Saves: WU 6 & MC 13
Turnovers: WU 29 & MC 28
Face Offs Won: WU 20-27 & MC 7-27
Shots:WU 41& MC 31
Ground Balls:WU 24 & MC 14
Clears: WU 45-55 & MC 41-47
Man Up: WU 0-2 & MC 0-2
FO Violations: WU 0 & MC 3