SPRINGFIELD, MA – The Merrimack men's lacrosse team snapped a three-game losing streak, defeating American International College 22-8 Friday afternoon.
The Warriors rattled off 16 first-half markers, leading by 12 at halftime, featuring five goals in a 3:01 span midway through the second. Outscoring AIC 11-1 in the second, they concluded the half with four more markers in a 2:09 span, as Mike Perdie (Wading River, NY), Greg Melaugh (Billerica, MA), Nick Vazquez (Haverhill, MA) and Terence Barclay (Babylon, NY) each scored late in the quarter, putting the game away early.
Freshman Paul Jones (Guilderland, NY) was one of eight Merrimack scorers in the first half, as he netted his second and third goals of the game and third and fourth career tallies 34-seconds apart in the second quarter. Michael Balbuena (Falmouth, MA) picked up three first-half goals, including two in a 57-second span.
In all, 11 Warriors had points in the first half, as Perdie, Jones, Balbuena and Corey Lunney (Little Silver, NJ) had three each, while Nick Maggio (Winchester, MA) won 17-of-20 first-half draws, registering an assist and 14 ground balls.
Four different players, Greg Fallon (North Kingstown, RI), Jordan Tiger (Ridgefield, CT), Matt Marini (Trumbull, CT) and Matthew Dellaquila (Mattituck, NY) picked up three-quarter goals, giving Merrimack the 20-6 advantage through three quarters.
"It was a good win," said head coach Mike Morgan. "Our ball movement and shooting was much better, and Paul Jones and Mike Perdie did a great job of controlling the offense. We did a better job of limiting our turnovers."
Seventeen Warriors finished with at least a point, led by four from Jones, as Merrimack outshot AIC 49-27 in the victory. Merrimack was a perfect 5-for-5 on its extra-man opportunities.
Merrimack (8-5, 5-4 NE-10) concludes the regular season Thursday at Saint Anselm at 4 p.m. in a rescheduled game from April 13. The Warriors will then learn their postseason fate in the Northeast-10 Tournament, which will likely result in the fifth seed and a road game on Tuesday, May 3.