Men’s lacrosse falls in MAAC opener

Nathan Conroy scored a pair of goals, but the Griffs fell to Manhattan last Saturday. (Aidan Joly/The Griffin)

By Connor Pohlman, Sports Reporter

In their Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference opener, Canisius (1–1) fell to the Manhattan Jaspers 10–7. 

Liam Walshe recorded a hat trick and Brendan Krebs made 14 saves to secure Manhattan’s 10–7 victory over Canisius in MAAC men’s lacrosse action Saturday at the Demske Sports Complex in downtown Buffalo.

Sean MacKinney recorded a goal and three assists while Trevor Pelletier and Jake Nicolosi accounted for two goals each for the visiting Jaspers. Kyle Gucwa and Brandon Grinnell tallied the other two Manhattan goals.

Graduate transfer Dan Kritkausky and sophomore Nathan Conry tallied two goals apiece for the Golden Griffins. Freshman Hunter Parucki recorded his first collegiate goal and added two assists for a three-point afternoon while sophomore Connor Beals was 15-of-21 at the face-off X and added 11 ground balls. Sophomore Jackson Naylor added two assists while junior Mike Penna finished with a goal and an assist.

Manhattan never trailed in the game, using goals from Pelletier, Walshe and Gucwa over the opening nine minutes of the contest to build a 3–0 advantage.

Conry got Canisius on the board a little more than a minute after Gucwa’s tally to lessen the deficit to 3–1, but Pelletier put Manhattan back on track with his second goal of the quarter, igniting a 5–1 run that would stretch into the opening minutes of the third, giving the Jaspers a commanding 8–2 lead over the Golden Griffins. 

Freshman Keegan Kozack slowed Manhattan’s momentum with his second goal of the season at the 11:44 mark of the third to pull the Griffs within five, but Walshe completed his hat trick to restore the Jaspers’ six-goal cushion heading into the fourth.  

Penna and Conry opened the fourth-quarter scoring to pull the Griffs within four, but Nicolosi answered back for Manhattan to make it a 10–5 contest with just over three minutes remaining. Kritkausky closed out the scoring with a pair of man-up goals over the last two minutes of regulation to determine the final three-goal margin.

“There were mistakes early on that we shouldn’t make,” Canisius head coach Mark Miyashita told gogriffs.com. “I know we haven’t played a lot of competitive lacrosse in the last year but, these are things that we work on every single day in practice. Unfortunately, some of our basic fundamentals just failed us early on and that got a little bit into our heads. Still being a young team, kind of maybe just set in a little bit more than then it should have and we just need to be more mentally resilient early on and sharper about committing to the systems and the game plan.” 

The Canisius Golden Griffins will hope to return to the win column when they host St. Bonaventure at 4 p.m. on March 20. 

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