Patriots hang on to defeat Colonels
BENNINGTON >> Coming off a tough loss to rival Burr and Burton on Tuesday, the Mount Anthony boys lacrosse team kept their focus on ending the season strong.
The Patriots sure did that with a 8-6 victory over Brattleboro on Friday afternoon, wining five of their last six games to finish the regular season .
As both teams started the game slow offensively, Hunter Davis helped get the Patriots' offense going with under four minutes to go in the first quarter.
Playing in his last home game of his career at MAU, the senior dodged a couple of Brattleboro defenders and ripped a shot into the net to give the Patriots a 1-0 lead.
Davis was back at it again for the Patriots in the second quarter.
Now trailing by a goal to the Colonels, Davis got Patriots back even with Brattleboro, scoring his second goal of the contest and segued to fellow senior Jeremy Bourgeouis scoring his first of the game to give MAU back the lead at 4-3.
After Thomas Hendery scored his second goal of the game to make it a two score lead for the Patriots, Davis had the hat trick in his sights, slashing home his third goal of the game off a nice pass from junior Trey Lang to give a 4-0 run to end the quarter and 6-3 lead at halftime.
"Ball movement and cutting with out the ball was huge for myself and our offense today," Davis said. "We played with high intensity as a team today and fought for every ground ball. Those little things that go unnoticed like effort plays really made a difference for us in the game."
Davis scored his game-high fourth goal of the afternoon to start the second half to extend the Patriots' lead to four.
Back to a three goal lead after Brattleboro scored off a penalty by the Patriots, Hendery joined Davis in the hat trick club by picking up a loose ground ball and then ripping it in top-shelf to MAU a 8-4 advantage.
The duo of Davis and Hendery combined for seven of the Patriots' eight goals in the game.
"Senior night is always an important night for a senior to do well and I'm happy that the group of us seniors were a big part in the win," Hendery said. "Best part about our success to on the field was that it was a team effort and that we got another total team win going into the playoffs."
Leading 8-5 in the fourth quarter, the story of the game shifted to being about the Patriots' defense, which shutout Brattleboro for the first 11 minutes of the quarter to keep MAU ahead.
"We got back to who we are on defense and that is playing as a unit and working with one another to force turnovers and bad shots," said MAU coach Mark Lange. "Our defense is a solid unit and it was great to see them bounce back from the loss against BBA on Tuesday."
Brattleboro scored a goal with 25 seconds left to cut the MAU lead to two, but it was not enough as the Patriots were able to hang on for their eighth win of the season.
Lang finished with a team-high four assists in the win for MAU.
MAU goaltender Jackson Thibodeau had another outstanding game in net, racking up 12 saves in the victory.
Senior Evan Perkins scored a team-high three goals in the loss for Brattleboro.
With the win, MAU finished the regular season 8-8 and will find out their seed in the playoffs, when the pairings for Division I tournament come out on Monday.
"Getting a win going into the playoffs definitely gives us some more confidence and winning on senior day will be something these seniors will never forget," Lange said. "Right now we're just going to focus on getting better in our practices and when we find out which seed we are and who we're playing, will prepare and I like our chances to play a good game against whomever that opponent is."
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