Sea Gulls fend off Eagles as Kane nets career-high five goals

FREDERICKSBURG, Va. - The No. 2 Salisbury University men's lacrosse team came out victorious at No. 15 University of Mary Washington, 10-7, in a close, physical Capital Athletic Conference matchup on Saturday.

The Sea Gulls got the scoring started when sophomore midfielder Thomas Cirillo picked up a ground ball off a save by Mary Washington (7-2, 0-2 CAC) goalkeeper Zach DelGrosso and redirected the ball into the back of the cage.

Just over a minute later, senior attackman Rhett DePol found sophomore midfielder Davis Anderson on the crease in transition for a 2-0 advantage. 

The Eagles' Luke Dick answered to cut the lead to one goal with 6:07 left in the first quarter, but Salisbury (10-0, 3-0 CAC) would score twice more in the frame to gain a three-goal lead; Dick registered a hat trick to lead Mary Washington in the game.

Driving left, junior midfielder Sean Fitzgerald netted his first to put the Gulls ahead, 3-1, before junior attackman Mike Kane took a pass from senior attackman Luke Phipps to score with 24 second left in the first quarter; Kane led the team with a career-high five goals, while Phipps added a team-high three assists.

Senior midfielder Donovan Lange increased Salisbury's lead to 5-1 at the 11:01 mark of the second quarter, with a man-up score from the right wing.

The Eagles found some momentum, scoring three-straight goals to cut SU's lead to only one, but Kane added his second, picking up a ground ball on the crease and netting the shot, to give Salisbury a 6-4 lead at halftime.

At the half, the Gulls led in shots, 24-13, faceoffs, 7-of-12, and ground balls, 24-15. Salisbury also was perfect in clearing, converting 7-of-7 in the half and 14-of-14 for the game.

Kane's next two goals opened the scoring for the second half and built Salisbury's lead back to four; he first took a pass from DePol and put home a shot on the crease in transition at the 9:48 mark of the third quarter, before Lange found him on the crease with 6:00 left in the quarter for a back-handed, underhand flip for the score.

Dick added his next two to end the third quarter, and a man-up Eagles' score from Greg Smith with 13:27 left in the game cut the SU lead to one.

Despite UMW keeping it close, Lange and Kane both added their final scores in the fourth quarter to cap the win.

Lange finished the game with two goals, and DePol finished with two assists.

Senior goalkeeper Alex Taylor earned the victory, playing 60 minutes in goal and making five saves, putting him just five saves behind former Sea Gull Johnny Rodriguez for the No. 4 spot on the all-time saves list.

Salisbury now looks forward to a mid-week contest with new CAC opponent Christopher Newport University on Wednesday, with the game set to begin at 4 p.m., in Newport News, Va.

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