Lacrosse Wins Opening Tilt Against Bryant


Quinn Daly, Colgate Sports Editor

The Colgate men’s lacrosse team entered its season opener unranked against the Bryant University team ranked #14 in the country. The Raiders traveled to Rhode Island and beat the Bulldogs 9-5. 

Colgate came out a little sluggish, losing groundballs by a margin of 11-2 in the first quarter, but eventually woke up in the second quarter to get things going. The Raiders went into halftime dead-locked with the Bulldogs at two goals apiece. 

After halftime, however, Colgate managed to get its offense clicking on all cylinders, as they notched three and four goals in the third and fourth quarter respectively. As to how Colgate managed to win this game—the Raiders outshot the Bulldogs 33-27, peppering the Bryant goalie with shots throughout the

second half. 

   While Colgate struggled to clear the ball in the first half, they flipped the table on Bryant, riding the clear very hard in the second-half, and allowing just a 57 percent clear rate for the Bulldogs. 

“We were giving them extra possessions through ground balls and clears” Head Coach Mike Murphy said when asked what made the huge difference

between the play in the two halves. 

Sophomore midfielder Jack Stebbins and sophomore midfielder Peter Donato led the Raiders in scoring, tallying

two goals apiece. 

Coach Murphy raved about the two midfielders, and the impact they had on the game. 

“Our midfield was excellent today, and Donato and Stebbins were a big part of that,” he said. “I know it’s one game, but we’ve been seeing them making a difference in practice, and it came to

fruition today.” 

  Murphy credited much of the second half success to a more dominant time of possession, along with a stronger attack when they did choose to drive to the net.

Sophomore goalie Brandon Burke played an excellent game, saving 11 of 15 shots and leading a clear that was successful on nearly 70 percent of all opportunities.

A key area for the Raiders to keep an eye on is on the faceoff. Colgate tried its hand with several different players taking face-offs, but lost possession on 13 out of 18 face-offs. As the team gets into the swing of the season, look for Colgate to shore things up with this unit as they look to climb the

national rankings. 

One very promising takeaway from this game for the Raiders is that they were able to get the job done offensively even with a team taking away their strength on offense. Throughout the game, Bryant committed to doubling senior captain Ryan Walsh

immediately when he dodged, but Colgate was still able to find a way to produce

significant offense with Walsh drawing the defense and then dishing it away for midfielders like Donato and Stebbins to attack. This diversity on offense is something that makes this year’s team a difficult matchup, as taking away one star does not necessarily mean a team can shut down the

Raiders’ attack. 

Colgate looks to continue its early season win streak this week when they travel to Burlington to take on the Vermont Catamounts on February 14 at 1 p.m. The Raiders host their home opener the following weekend against Lafayette at Crown Field at Andy Kerr Stadium. Last season the Raiders bested Vermont for coach Murphy’s third time, but lost to Lafayette. 

Colgate finished last season with an overall record of 9-7, losing in the semifinals of the Patriot League tournament to lacrosse powerhouse, Loyola University.