NEW LONDON, Conn. – The Mitchell College men's lacrosse team dropped its home opener by a 15-1 final to Western Connecticut State University on Thursday afternoon in non-conference action at Alumni Field.
The Colonials scored the first 11 goals of the contest and kept the Mariners off the scoreboard until the third quarter. Riley Graham set the tone for the visitors with three goals and four assists while Matthew Paternostro added four tallies. Goalie Colin Neal played the final 40:04 and made nine stops in the victory.
Jesse McKeever netted the lone goal for the Mariners, who were coming off seven straight road games to start the season. Marcel Quinlan made 21 saves in the cage and faced a total of 56 shots on the day.
WestConn scored in the game's opening minute and never looked back. Graham finished with a goal and a helper in the quarter as the Colonials led 4-0 after the first 15 minutes.
The Colonials added five more goals in the second quarter, three of which came on assists from Eric Caldwell. By the end of the half, eight different WestConn players had found the back of the net as the lead ballooned to 9-0.
Paternostro added three more goals in the second half while Jack Hamel contributed a pair. Mitchell's goal came at the 3:15 mark in the third quarter on an unassisted effort by McKeever, his eighth goal of the season.
WestConn finished 3-for-5 on extra-man opportunities with Graham cashing in twice. The Colonials also dominated the face-off spot (16-for-20) behind the efforts of Bryan Murchison, who went 12-for-13 with a game-high 10 ground balls.
Mitchell (0-8 overall) will next play at Dean College on Saturday, April 7 at 10 a.m. WestConn (4-5 overall) returns to action at home against UMass Boston on Saturday at 4 p.m.