COLCHESTER, Vt. - Junior Pete Donnally (Madison, N.J./Morristown-Beard School) scored his league-leading 31st goal of the season with 4:14 remaining in the fourth quarter to help the nationally-ranked Saint Michael's College men's lacrosse team snap a 5-5 tie en route to a 7-5 victory over Pace University at Duffy Field on Saturday.
The Purple Knights, who are ranked 11th according to the latest United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association (USILA) national poll, improve to 8-4 overall and 4-4 in the Northeast-10 Conference, while the Setters fall to 4-6 and 3-4.
Donnally led the Purple Knights with two markers, while junior Marty Vanzo (Westford, Vt./Essex/Vermont) and sophomore Cooper Quenneville (Shoreham, Vt./Gould Academy) each had one goal and one assist. Senior Tyler Violette (Amherst, N.H./Proctor Academy) had six ground balls and caused four turnovers, while sophomore Chris Casserly (Kensington, N.H./Exeter) was 6-of-10 on face-offs. Junior defender Neil Kelly (Narragansett, R.I./Bishop Hendricken) and sophomore Sean Smith (West Islip, N.Y./Saint John the Baptist Diocesan) each tallied their first career assist, while sophomore Chris DeMairo (Bethpage, N.Y./Bethpage) made 11 saves, including five in the fourth quarter.
Junior Matt Mirabito (Bethpage, N.Y./Bethpage/Broome CC) tallied two goals and an assist for the visitors, while three other players found the back of the net once. Senior Kevin Grady (Medford, N.Y./Bellport) stopped 15 shots.
The Setters took a 1-0 lead at 6:14 of the first quarter, but the Purple Knights responded and received goals from sophomore Connor Glackin (South Huntington, N.Y./Saint Anthony's) and senior Max Zuccarini (Medfield, Mass./Medfield/Quinnipiac) at 5:37 and 2:24, respectively, to give the hosts a 2-1 edge.
Pace knotted the score at two with 42 seconds left in the second quarter and struck again at 12:20 of the third quarter to retake a one-goal lead. Donnally scored off of Kelly's assist at 7:03 before Vanzo tallied at 3:49 to give the Purple Knights a 4-3 advantage. The teams traded goals in the final three minutes of the quarter, as Pace tied the game at 2:59 before Quenneville found the back of the net at 2:04 to help Saint Michael's reclaim the lead.
Mirabito forced the fifth and final tie, as he tallied at 6:08 of the final frame, but Donnally responded less than two minutes later, as he gave the Purple Knights the lead for good. The Setters pressed for the tying goal, but DeMairo made two stops in the final two minutes, including a toe save with 1:46 left, to preserve the slim lead. Senior Kevin Hunt (Johnstown, N.Y./Johnstown) added an insurance marker with 1:23 remaining off of Smith's assist, his first career point.
The Purple Knights play their final road game of the season next Saturday when they take on America International College at 4 p.m.