Bulletin Board: UMass lax rebounds, 16-11
Grant Whiteway scored seven goals and assisted on another to help the No. 14 UMass men’s lacrosse team rebound from its first loss of the season over the weekend with a 16-11 victory over Providence in a non-conference game Tuesday afternoon at Garber Field in Amherst.
Connor Mooney finished with three goals and four assists for UMass (5-1), which was thumped, 25-10, by Albany over the weekend.
UMass jumped out to a 6-2 lead after the first quarter, but Providence kept things tight by outscoring the Minutemen, 2-0, in the second to send the teams into halftime with UMass holding a narrow, 6-4, edge. The Minutemen scored five goals in each of the third and fourth quarters to open things up a bit en route to the win.
Joe Calvello won 21 of 30 faceoffs and scooped up a single-game program record 18 groundballs for UMass. Andrew Sokol scored a pair of goals, while Calvello, Brendan Hegarty, Brendan Schroeder and Matt Whippen each added one goal.
Zach Oliveri finished with 12 saves in the win.
UMass heads to Penn State University Saturday at noon.
Upcoming Amherst games
The Amherst College men’s and women’s basketball teams will be back in action this weekend after each won in the NCAA Division III Tournament over the weekend.
The Lord Jeffs men’s team defeated York College, 63-51, Saturday to advance to the Sweet 16 of the men’s tournament. Amherst (25-3 overall), which got a first-round bye, got off to a slow start in the game and trailed 23-21 at halftime before using a 42-28 second-half scoring edge to earn the victory. Amherst will face Plattsburgh State University of New York Friday night at 7:30 at LeFrak Gymnasium in Amherst for a chance to advance to the quarterfinals, which will be held on Saturday.
On the women’s side, South Deerfield native G.P. Gromacki led the Jeffs (26-3) to a pair of victories over the weekend in tournament play. Amherst opened up on Friday night with a 63-49 win over Springfield College, and then knocked off Hartwick College, 82-61, on Saturday. The Jeffs will take on Ithaca College in third-round action on Friday at 5 at Tufts University in Medford. A win would move the Jeffs to Saturday’s quarterfinals.
Laffey at New England
Kyle Laffey’s season and career finally came to an end over the weekend.
Franklin County Technical School’s senior wrestler went 0-2 in the 160-pound class late Friday night and was eliminated from the New England High School Wrestling Championships at Providence Career Technical High School in Providence, R.I.
Laffey, the first-ever Tech wrestler to make it to New Englands and just the eighth area wrestler to go that far, opened the day against Oxford (Conn.) High School’s Steve Persson, who finished third in Connecticut. Persson defeated Laffey, who finished sixth in Massachusetts, 8-4 to send Laffey to the consolation bracket.
That pitted Laffey against Jesse Hutchinson from Dirigo High School (Dixfield, Maine), the Maine runner-up. Hutchinson ended Laffey’s season with a 7-1 victory. While Laffey did not win a match at the meet, Franklin Tech coach Joe Gamache said he was proud of his student-athlete.
“It’s definitely not a disappointment,” Gamache began. “He obviously had a tremendous season and a tremendous high school wrestling career, and it was a nice accomplishment to cap it all off by getting to the New England Tournament, and being the first kid from our school to do so. Kyle set the standard for our school moving forward. He set the bar for future Franklin County Tech wrestlers.”
Laffey ended his four-year career with 165 wins, the second-most ever by a Franklin Tech wrestler.
Mooney strong on slopes
Charlemont’s Zach Mooney finished with the bronze medal for the Under-16 Eastern Ski Series and qualified for the upcoming US Nationals and the AM-Cans.
Mooney spent five days skiing at Whiteface Mountain in Lake Placid, N.Y., and things started out slowly, as he fell twice, and then finished 25th (out of 90) in the super giant slalom, then took 14th in the giant slalom.
Mooney turned it up in his final race — the slalom, which is also his best event. He finished fifth in his first run to secure the spot in the AM-Cans, which is a race series hosted at Mont Tremblant in Quebec, featuring the best racers from the eastern United States, and the best races from Quebec, Ontario and surrounding areas.
Mooney then placed second in his second run on the slalom and placed second overall, which earned him a spot on at the Nationals, which took the top eight male racers for the eight-day event in Park City, Utah.