NORTHFIELD, Vt. – Castleton University scored five straight goals over a seven-minute span in the first half to take a two-goal lead, but Norwich University responded with its own 8-1 scoring run as the Cadets defeated the Spartans, 13-9, Tuesday night in a non-conference collegiate men's lacrosse game at Sabine Field.
Norwich (7-7) drew first blood just 1:11 into the game as Josh Jenkins set up Cody Moore for the Cadets' first goal of the game. Jenkins picked up a goal of his own 43 seconds later, and then Ian Kennedy set up Aidan Moulton for a goal to give Norwich a 3-0 lead with 10:34 remaining in the first quarter.
Sam Siegel put Castleton on the board midway through the first quarter, and then he earned his second goal of the game to pull the Spartans within one. Just over a minute later, Kennedy scored, and then Moulton earned his second goal of the game to extend the Cadet lead back to three at 5-2 with 3:47 left in the opening period.
Nik Rancourt launched a shot into the net, and then Siegel picked up his third goal of the night to cut the Spartan deficit back to one at 5-4 as the first quarter ended. Just 50 seconds into the second period, Louis Alhage tied the game, Ryan Stone gave Castleton its first lead of the game 40 seconds later, and Siegel assisted on a goal by Kevin McCarthy to give the Spartans a 7-5 advantage.
Nolan Aurelia put Norwich back on the board to snap the Spartan five-goal stretch, and then the two teams exchanged scoring chances for the next seven minutes without converting. Moore tied the game at 7-7 with his second goal of the game, and then the Cadets scored twice in the final minute of the first half, as tallies by Matt Shea and Kennedy put the home team ahead at halftime, 9-7.
The offense on each side slowed down in the second half, as it took almost eight full minutes after halftime before Siegel scored for the Spartans to close the margin to one at 9-8. Norwich put the game away with four straight goals, starting with tallies by Aurelia and Shea to close out the third quarter.
The Cadets continued to pull away in the fourth quarter with a goal by Jenkins two-and-a-half minutes into the period, followed by Shea's third goal of the game with 8:02 left in regulation. Siegel earned his fifth goal of the match one minute later, but Norwich successfully ran time off the clock every time it had possession the rest of the way, preventing the Spartans from coming any closer.
Siegel earned his fifth hat trick of the season and scored five goals in a game for the third time in 2017, but he was the only Spartan to finish with more than one point in the game. Brandon Myron collected 12 saves as he attempted to keep Castleton within striking distance.
All six goal scorers for Norwich earned at least two goals, with Shea leading the way with three goals. Jenkins finished with two goals and three assists, and Kennedy contributed two goals and two assists. Tyler LoPorto made 10 saves in net for the Cadets as he picked up the victory.
For the most part, the team statistics were even, as each team took 38 total shots, Norwich won just one more faceoff than Castleton (13-12), and Castleton committed only one more turnover than the Cadets (22-21). Norwich did enjoy a substantial advantage in ground balls, 40-26, and converted two extra-man opportunities into goals on six chances, while the Spartans only had two EMOs, not scoring on either one.
Castleton (6-8) returns to conference play for the rest of the regular season, starting Thursday, April 20, at Johnson State beginning at 4:30 p.m.