Sam Hornblower: 2017 LEC Defensive Player of the Year

Mass. Maritime Holds Off Southern Maine 13-11

Senior Sam Hornblower (photo by Jason Johns).
Senior Sam Hornblower (photo by Jason Johns).

Mass. Maritime Holds Off Southern Maine 13-11

            GORHAM, Maine -- Junior Benjamin Avakian (Bourne, Mass.) scored nine goals and dished off one assist as the visiting Massachusetts Maritime Academy Buccaneers held off a fourth-quarter comeback bid by the University of Southern Maine Huskies to take a 13-11 victory Saturday afternoon in a non-conference men's lacrosse match at Hannaford Field.

            The Buccaneers extended their winning streak to three games with the win, and improved their overall record to 4-2.  The Huskies dropped their second straight game to slide to 2-2 on the season.

            Avakian was a one-man wrecking crew for the Buccaneers scoring the first five goals of the game inside of eight minutes.  He added a sixth goal in the first quarter as the Buccaneers jumped out to a 7-2 advantage.  No other MMA player had more than on goal.  Senior Kenneth Parnell (Marshfield, Mass.) dished out three assists, and senior goalie Michael Dolan (McLean, Va.) stopped 12 shots to earn his fourth win of the season.

            Junior Tristan Dundas (Abbotsford, B.C.) led the Huskies scoring five goals and passing off one assist.  Rookie Nick James (Portland, Maine/Deering) chipped in with a goal and two assists, and sophomore Joe Cullinan (Contoocook, N.H.) and freshman Andrew Eno (Brunswick, Maine) each had a goal and an assist.  Second-year goalie Griffin Hanson (Dover, N.H.) made 14 saves.

            Avakian scored on his first four shots to give the visitors a 4-0 lead seven minutes into the game.  He added his fifth goal with 7:01 remaining in the quarter before Dundas got the Huskies on the board converting Cullinan's feed 24 second later.  The Buccaneers kept up the offensive pressure, outshooting the Huskies 15-6 in the quarter, adding goals by Avakian and senior Ted Powers (Marshfield, Mass.) to increase their lead to 7-1.

            USM defender Sam Hornblower (Portland, Maine/Deering) scored an unassisted goal on a nifty move before the end quarter.

            The teams each scored three goals in the second quarter to give MMA a 10-5 edge at the break.

            MMA maintained its lead throughout the third quarter, and went up 13-7 on Avakian's ninth goal with 10:30 left in the fourth.

            Cullinan, Dundas, sophomore Robby Pini (Natick, Mass.) and James scored within a span of 6:36 to close the gap to two (13-11) with 2:16 to play, but the Huskies were unable to get any closer.

            MMA outshot USM 51-34 for the game, and won the battle for ground balls 36-29.

            Southern Maine will travel to New Hampton, N.H., on Tuesday (7 p.m.) to play Northern Vermont University-Lyndon at the New Hampton School.  Mass. Maritime is off until next Saturday (3 p.m.) when it opens conference play at Babson College.