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NCAA Tournament First Round
Tufts 9 Endicott 8

At Medford
Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Game Box Score

Matt Harrigan made 16 saves for the Jumbos, including 10 in the second half

MEDFORD -- The Tufts Jumbos built an 8-1 lead and then narrowly survived an Endicott College comeback to move on in the NCAA Division III Men's Lacrosse Tournament with a 9-8 victory on Wednesday night at Bello Field.

The Jumbos (13-3), who tied a school record with their 13th victory, travel to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania to play the second-ranked Bullets in second-round NCAA action on Saturday at 1:00. Endicott's season is over with a 15-3 record.

Making their first-ever NCAA Tournament appearance, the Jumbos looked like they were going to rout the Gulls in the first 20 minutes. They scored the first four goals, including sensational individual efforts by sophomore Clem McNally (Farhills, NJ) and freshman Jamie Atkins (Concord, MA). Endicott got on the scoreboard with a goal by Nick Cosco (Londonderry, NH) late in the first quarter, but Tufts opened the second period with four straight goals. Sophomore middie Chase Bibby (Marblehead, MA) had two of them, and McNally also scored his third of the game. Twenty minutes into the contest it was 8-1 Tufts.

That's when the momentum began to shift. Cosco and senior Josh Gilbert (Simsbury, CT) scored less than a minute apart for the Gulls to make it 8-3. Tufts senior Mark Warner (Wading River, NY) tallied at 4:45 of the second, putting the Tufts lead at 9-3. It would be the last goal of the game for the Jumbos. Endicott finished the half with late goals by Gilbert and Eddie O'Reilly (Beverly, MA), just 20 seconds apart, to go into intermission trailing 9-5. However, the tide had turned.

The Gulls then came out and dominated the second half. They out-shot Tufts 26-14 and won the ground balls battle 18-12 in the third and fourth quarters. However, they could only get a man-up goal by Cosco at 6:21 of the third quarter, hitting four posts during the period, and the game went into the fourth with Tufts leading 9-6. Gulls goals by Dan Cain (Billerica, MA) at 12:43 and Gilbert at 6:23 pulled the visitors Gulls within one goal.

Tufts could get nothing done offensively, going scoreless in the second half and for the last 34:45 overall. However, the Jumbo defense buckled down and sophomore goalie Matt Harrigan (Darnestown, MA) was solid, making 10 of his 16 saves in the second half. The Gulls had five shots to zero for the Jumbos in the final six minutes, but none were on net and Tufts escaped with the win.

In addition to the multiple-goal games by McNally and Bibby, senior Chris Connelly (Wilton, CT) had a goal and two assists for the Jumbos and Warner finished with one of each.

Gilbert and Cosco both scored three times for the Gulls, while O'Reilly finished with a goal and two assists and Brandon Dube (Danvers, MA) passed out three assists. Endicott goalie Sean Kearney (Mahopac, NY) had 10 saves.