AJ Karofsky (Photo Courtesy of Jeff Melnik)
AJ Karofsky (Photo Courtesy of Jeff Melnik)

WESTON, Mass. – The Regis College men's lacrosse team won their first ever New England Collegiate Conference tournament game as they defeated Daniel Webster 17-7 on Wednesday evening at Regis Stadium. With the win, the Pride move to 12-4 overall and the loss ends the Eagles season at 7-8.

The No. 1 seeded Pride will play host to No. 3 Becker College on Saturday for the conference title. The Hawks are the defending conference champions and sent the Pride home packing last year 10-7 in the NECC Semifinals. However this season, Regis bested their conference rival by an 8-3 score at Becker on April 9th.

Regis led from the get-go as they scored three goals in the opening 15 minutes. Nicky Rodrigo (Miami, Fla.) got his squad on the board first as he took a pass from teammate Calvin Brault (Colchester, Vt.) on the left side of the cage and buried a one-timer to put Regis up 1-0.

Seven minutes later Rodrigo struck again after corralling a pass from Danny Rancano (Miami, Fla.) in front of the net and put it past Eagles keeper Curtis Larade (Merrimack, N.H.) for a 2-0 Pride lead. Sophomore attack AJ Karofsky (Barrington, R.I.) matched Rodrigo's score with a marker of his own as he came off a screen from the left side and sniped a top shelf shot to make it a 3-0 game.

DWC would not back down in the second quarter as they used unassisted tallies to pull within a goal. Eagle attacker Collin Malone (Deland, Fla.) scooped up a blocked shot attempt and pushed the rock with his stick past Pride goaltender D.J. Barrile (Medford, Mass.) for the visitor's first goal of the game. About a minute later, junior attack David Downie (Merrimack, N.H.) converted a successful clear attempt, streaked through the Pride defensive unit, then pulled up and shot the ball from 15 feet out to cut the deficit to one, 3-2 with 9:27 left to play before half.

Regis used five consecutive goals, with two from Rodrigo, two from Alex Ferran (Miami, Fla.) with one gino coming with a man up and another one from Karofsky to make it an 8-2 contest with 44 second left. DWC responded with a Malone goal as he pulled off a give-and-go play with Domanic Darenzo (Schuylerville, N.Y.) cut the Pride advantage to 8-3 at the break.

A Karofsky goal made it 9-3 with 11:12 left in the third before D.J. Barrile made the play of the day. The junior goalkeeper made a save and then scurried about the back of the net. Eagles midfielder Anthony Cotoni (Groton, Mass.) shadowed Barrile and knocked the rock out of his stick for a caused turnover. Cotoni scooped up the loose ball, while Barrile was sprinting back to the cage. Cotoni saw himself right outside the crease with a one-on-one opportunity with the Pride goaltender, but Barrile stifled Cotoni's shot as it landed right in the web of his stick.

The Pride added a few more goals to go up 14-4 heading into the fourth before Tyler Estes (Geneva, Ill.) replaced Barrile in net.

David Downie, Anthony D'Urso (Rome, N.Y.) and Russell Applegate (Nashua, N.H.) all recorded scores to make it 14-7 Regis, but the Pride defense settled down and Rodrigo, Ferran and Karofsky matched the Eagles scores with one goal apiece which ended the game.

D.J. Barrile allowed only 4 goals in 45 minutes of play and made 11 saves as he moved to 11-4 on the year with the victory. Tyler Estes made five saves in 15 minutes of play. Curtis Larade took the setback and fell to 6-6 on the season while making eight saves in the loss

Face-off specialist Jack O'Brien (Milton, Mass.) was 19-of-27 (70.3%) on face-off attempts. Nicky Rodrigo and AJ Karofsky scored five goals each for Regis while teammate Alex Ferran added four of his own with two helpers.

David Downie paced the Eagles attack with three scores while Collin Malone racked up two goals and an assist.