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Massachusetts falls to Saint Joseph's in the Atlantic 10 semifinals

AMHERST, Mass. – University of Massachusetts men's lacrosse stayed within striking distance from start to start, but No. 14 Saint Joseph's never trailed in the competition, handing UMass an 11-9 setback in the Atlantic 10 semifinals Thursday at Garber Field.

With the loss, the Gorillas finish the year at 6-8, while the Hawks enter Saturday's Atlantic 10 championship game with an 11-3 record.

Mike Tobin He led the Massachusetts offense with four points, recording a hat trick and an assist and adding two ground balls. Shane O'Leary contributed two goals and two assists as the only other Gorilla with multiple points on the afternoon. Caleb Hammett went 11 of 21 (52.4%) from the X and secured a team-best nine ground balls.

For Saint Joseph's, Levin Anderson finished the game with five points, four goals and one assist, as well as five ground balls. Griffin Mallory added two goals and an assist for three points, Carter Page recorded a goal and two assists with four ground balls and Matt Bohmer scored two goals.

The Hawks opened the scoring at 11:50 with Mallory's first goal from the previous day Conor Foley responded for UMass with its own unassisted count at 9:18. Mallory scored again to give Saint Joseph's a 2-1 lead after the first quarter.

A man-up goal to Jesse Jackson opened the second quarter, scoring for the Hawks before O'Leary and Carter Castillo had back-to-back scores for the Gorillas at 12-08 and 11-14, respectively, making the score 3-3. Anderson then capped the defensive half with a goal, putting Saint Joseph's back in the lead at the break.

The Hawks started the second half with two goals from Alex Keener and Page and had scored three goals before Mason Bregman ended the drought for UMass at 8:57 a.m. The teams then traded goals twice before the end of the period as Saint Joseph's took an 8-6 lead in the fourth period.

O'Leary's tally at 13:33 of the fourth period gave the Gorillas their second straight score and cut the deficit to 8-7 before the Hawks ended the rally with a 3-1 run. Tobin made the final score of the day with 24 seconds left when UMass had a man-up chance.

Saint Joseph's finished the game with a 48-34 advantage in shots and the Gorillas outscored the Hawks 39-38 in the ground ball game. UMass went 1-3 in the EMO and Saint Joseph's went 1-2.
Matt Knot matched his season high with 19 saves and Tommy Gross had 11 stops for the Hawks.

Anna Harden

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