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Bobcats edge Eagle lacrosse boys

by Joshua Spaulding
Sports Editor - Granite State News, Carroll County Independent, Meredith News, Gilford Steamer, Winnisquam Echo, Plymouth Record-Enterprise and Baysider

KENNETT'S NICK SHERWOOD and Plymouth's Kyle Reisert converge on a ground ball in action April 29 in North Conway. Joshua Spaulding. (click for larger version)
May 05, 2014
NORTH CONWAY — The Kennett and Plymouth boys' lacrosse teams battled hard for 48 minutes before the Bobcats were able to come away with a 9-6 win on Tuesday, April 28, in North Conway.

"A lot of kids stepped up," said Plymouth coach Glenn Mausolf. "The kids went to the wall today in order to pull this one out."

Plymouth was able to get the scoring going in the first quarter, scoring all three of the tallies in the frame.

Jared Kuehl, Drew McLaughlin and Kyle Reisert all got in on net to test Kennett keeper Tristan Andreani.

Kennett came back with some strong control in the offensive zone at the other end, but couldn't get any shots on net. Kuehl and Jim Wieliczko both turned in solid defensive efforts for the Bobcats.

Dan Nusbaum came up with a big steal for the Eagles, while Kherry Rober had a couple of good shots on net, with Plymouth keeper Dylan McIntosh make the saves.

However, with 5:43 to go, Reisert got Plymouth on the scoreboard with a bounce shot past Andreani for a 1-0 lead.

Just more than 30 seconds later, Plymouth was awarded a three-minute power play and after a nice save from Andreani on a Kuehl shot, Kuehl found Gio Troila for the second goal of the game with 4:15 to go.

Nate Arnold turned in solid defense for the Eagles, while Amani Mwingira and Kuehl had looks in the offensive zone. Clay Cordasco and Nick Bruston had good looks for the Eagles at the other end, but with 49 seconds to go in the first, Kuehl fired a shot past Andreani for a 3-0 lead. Andreani did turn away a bid in the final seconds to close out the first.

Kennett began their comeback early in the second period. After a good look from Reisert was stopped by Andreani, Arnold came back with a good look and John Emery had a shot stopped by McIntosh.

But with just 1:05 gone in the period, the Eagles got a power play tally from Nusbaum, who put back a rebound of a shot by Zach DeGroot to cut the lead to 3-1.

The two teams went back and forth with chances, as Reisert had a couple of good looks, as did Mwingira, while Rober led the charge for the Kennett offense.

With 4:40 to go, Rober fired a shot past McIntosh to cut the lead to 3-2, but Plymouth answered just 25 seconds later, with Kuehl firing a shot past Andreani.

Rober and Arnold had shots late for the Eagles and Mwingira had a good look for the Bobcats, but the game went to the half with Plymouth up 4-2.

Just 1:15 into the second half, Kuehl upped Plymouth's lead to 5-2, but the Eagles didn't cave, as Joe Donovan came back down the field less than two minutes later and buried a shot past McIntosh to cut the lead to 5-3.

Then, less than two minutes after that, Donovan found the back of the net again, cutting the lead to 5-4 with just two ticks under seven minutes to go in the third quarter.

Plymouth bounced back just 28 seconds later, as Mwingira scored on the man advantage to put Plymouth up 6-4.

Ryan Stevens had a couple of good looks for the Eagles that were stopped by McIntosh and Reisert had a shot go wide for Plymouth. Andreani also made a nice save on Kuehl, but with two minutes to go and with the advantage due to Eagle penalties, the Bobcats upped the lead to 7-4, as Mwingira put the ball home.

Reisert then added another goal with two seconds to go in the quarter for an 8-4 lead after three.

Kennett came out charging in the third, with John Ferry, Bryan Baker and Stevens leading the way with strong offensive pressure.

The pressure paid off with 7:13 to go in the game, as Rober fired a shot in for an 8-5 lead.

Less than 30 seconds later, Mwingira put in his third goal of the game to stretch the lead back to four at 9-5.

Kennett wasn't done yet, as Donovan netted his third goal of the game to cut the lead to 9-6 with 3:50 to go. Kennett continued to pressure, with DeGroot, Nusbaum and Tanner Wheeler all getting looks, but the Bobcats were able to control the clock enough to keep the Eagles from getting any closer and held on for the 9-6 lead.

"I give Kennett credit," Mausolf said. "They played hard, really tough, a solid effort."

Mausolf also had praise for his goaltender, who did a nice job deflecting the Eagle shots.

"I can always count on him to battle," Mausolf said, noting that McIntosh always comes up with the big plays when the team needs them.

He also praised Mwingira's work in a new position, as he filled in at attack to cover for players missing due to vacation week.

"He made a lot of great, smart plays," Mausolf said. "He was thrust into playing attack, which he hadn't really done before."

The Bobcats will be in action on Friday, May 9, at home against Bishop Brady at 4 p.m., will be at Merrimack Valley at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 13, and will be hosting Laconia on Thursday, May 15, at 4 p.m.

The Eagles also dropped a 5-1 decision at Bishop Brady on April 30. They will be in action on Friday, May 9, at 4 p.m. at home against Pembroke and will be hosting Hopkinton on Tuesday, May 13, at 4 p.m.

Joshua Spaulding can be reached at 569-3126 or sportsgsn@salmonpress.com

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