LYNCHBURG, Va. – The Washington and Lee men's lacrosse team jumped out to a 9-1 lead early in the third period en route to scoring a season-best 13 goals in notching a 13-8 victory over 16th-ranked Lynchburg College on Saturday evening at Shellenberger Field.
The Generals (7-2, 3-0) took control of the contest early, scoring a pair of goals in the opening 3:25 for a 2-0 lead. Junior midfielder Joe Perrella (Larkspur, Calif. / Redwood) got things started at the 13:52 mark when he scored off an assist from senior midfielder Max Hutson (Houston, Texas / Episcopal). Sophomore attackman Sam Dardani (Waccabuc, N.Y. / Westminster) then found rope after being fed by junior attackman Whit Griffin (Richmond, Va. / Collegiate) at 11:35.
First-year attackman A.J. Witherell (Wilmington, Del. / Salesianum) made it 3-0 when he scored an unassisted goal at 3:48 and the Generals carried that lead into the second quarter. In the second frame, Witherell fed Dardani for another score at 13:10 and Hutson scored unassisted at 9:47 for a 5-0 advantage.
Lynchburg (4-5, 1-1) ended its scoring drought at the 8:06 mark of the second period when senior attackman Aaron Murphy scored unassisted, but the Generals' defense remained stout and W&L carried a 5-1 lead into the halftime break.
The Blue & White continued to pull away in the third period, scoring each of the first four goals to push out to a 9-1 lead at the 9:15 mark. Witherell got things going with an unassisted tally just 2:49 into the period. Sophomore midfielder Jones Veith (Alexandria, Va. / St. Stephen's & St. Agnes) then scored his first goal of the season at 11:52 and junior midfielder Ryan Brady (Tampa, Fla. / Tampa Jesuit) scored his first goal just 16 seconds later. Senior midfielder Graeme Weaver (Newtown Square, Pa. / Malvern Prep) capped the spurt with a man-up goal off a Witherell assist with 9:15 left in the third.
Lynchburg scored three of the next four goals to slice it to a 10-4 game entering the fourth quarter. Murphy notched one goal and one assist during the stretch, with first-year attackman Evan Lombardo and senior attackman Austin Stewart notching the other two tallies.
Murphy began the fourth quarter with a goal at 12:14, but the Generals responded with a man-up goal from Perrella off a Witherell assist at 11:34 to make it 11-5. Lombardo and Murphy both scored to bring the Hornets within four goals (11-7) with 7:07 to play, but junior midfielder Jonathan Henry (Charlotte, N.C. / Providence Day) and Witherell each scored unassisted goals to push the lead back to six (13-7) with just under two minutes remaining. Murphy scored again for LC in the final seconds, but it was too little too late as the Generals won their fifth straight game.
W&L held a 32-29 advantage in shots and a 28-24 edge in ground balls. The Generals also won 13-of-23 faceoffs. Witherell paced the offense with three goals and three assists, while Weaver, Perrella and Dardani each scored two goals. Hutson added one goal and one assist, and senior goalkeeper Wyatt Devine (Norfolk, Va. / Norfolk Academy) played all 60 minutes and made nine saves.
Murphy scored five goals and had one assist, and Lombardo had two goals to lead the Lynchburg scoring. Senior Chris Hawley played the first 42:33 in goal and made four saves with 10 goals allowed. Sophomore C.J. Santora logged one save with three goals allowed in the final 17:27.
Washington and Lee returns to action on Saturday when it travels to Guilford for a 4:00 pm contest.