Wesleyan Tops Williams in Season Opener

Williamstown, Mass– The Williams College Ephs (0-1/0-1 NESCAC) were defeated by the Wesleyan University Cardinals (1-0/1-0 NESCAC) 9-8 in today's match-up on Farley/Lamb field on the campus of Williams College. 

Trailing 4-2 with 11 minutes left in the second quarter #2 Wesleyan notched four consecutive goals, three by Harry Stanton, to take a 6-4 lead that Williams was able to halve three times, however, the Ephs never found the equalizer in the season opener for both teams.

Farley-Lamb Field was electric this afternoon for the rival matchup. At the first whistle blow, Wesleyan was able to win the face off but was quickly answered by a turnover and goal unassisted by Eph sophomore Max Stukalin within the first minute of the game. With a penalty on goalie George Peele, the Ephs were a man down, while freshman Harry Gahagan went in goal for Peele. With great defense and a save, the Ephs were able to regain possession and run the clock out on the Peele infraction.

Both teams battled it our for six minutes before Wesleyan answered with a goal from Cole Turpin unassisted. Less than a minute later, the Ephs netted a goal from senior captain James McFarland assisted by Kevin Stump. Thirty seconds later, Carter Hawthorne scored a goal for the Cardinals but it was soon countered by Kevin Stump for Williams with 52 seconds left in the period. The score at the end of the 1st quarter was Williams 3 - Wesleyan 2. 

The Ephs took their momentum into the second quarter of the match-up and found the net at 11:04 by senior James McFarland assisted by Kevin Stump. Two minutes later, Zander Kosten scored for the Cardinals assisted by Cole Turpin. Both teams played stellar defense for the remaining time in the quarter and the score going in to halftime was Williams 4 - Wesleyan 3. 

Just like the second quarter, the Ephs came out the second half fired up, winning the face off. With 9:06 left in the quarter the Cardinals matched this momentum by tying the score from a Harry Stanton tally assisted by Carter Hawthorne. With an unnecessary roughness penalty on Williams, the Cardinals were able to get two shots on the goal, with one going in from Ronan Jacoby to give Wesleyan the lead. A second unanswered goal was scored by the Cardinals on another man down opportunity with Harry Stanton's second of the day. The score was Wesleyan 6 - Williams 5. Sophomore John Hincks netted an amazing goal for the Ephs, minimizing the deficit to just one score. The Cardinals were able to answer this goal by Harry Stanton with his third of the day with 2:33 left in the quarter. Harry StantonWesleyan scored again at 1:19 to give the Cardinals a three-goal lead on the Ephs. Wesleyan was up 8-5. 

Wesleyan came into the final quarter focused and scored at 12:12 by Tom Martello on a crease-cranker assisted by Ryan Lynch. Sophomore Kevin Stump answered back for the Ephs with a goal, his third of the day. Less than a minute later, James McFarland scored the second unanswered goal for the Ephs in the fourth quarter. With two flags thrown on the Cardinals, Williams was able to put one in quickly by sophomore Max Stukalin. Six minuets left in the game, Williams was down by one score with a two man advantage. The Cardinals held out on giving the Ephs an opportunity to score and soon the game was even again. Another penalty flag was thrown against Wesleyan, their third of the fourth quarter. With a man up opportunity, Wesleyan denied an Ephs goal and called a timeout with two minutes remaining in the game. The Cardinals were up 9-8 with possession. In the last two minutes of the game, Wesleyan was able to stand its ground against a tenacious Williams attack to prevail 9-8. 

Eph goalie George Peele played the majority of the game and made 12 saves. Freshman goalie Harry Gahagan also had one save for the Ephs on an important man down drive. The Cardinals used one goalie this game, Steve Kovalsky, who made 8 saves. 

Wesleyan was led by Harry Stanton with four goals. The Ephs were led by Kevin Stump who netted three goals and both Maxwell Stukalin and Jamed McFarland who each had two. 

Eph head coach George McCormack stated, "I thought it was a great and hard-fought game. Our third quarter was our demise between possession of the ball and ground balls." "I'm super proud of the guys for the work they put in and we'll learn to build on this."

The Ephs return to action this coming Wednesday at Union for their second regular season game taking in the Dutchmen at 7pm. The Wesleyan Cardinals will next play at the Coast Guard Academy on Wednesday at 7pm.

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