MARS HILL, N.C. - The Mars Hill men's lacrosse team fell in a tightly contested South Atlantic Conference game, 15-10, to Wingate at the Ammons Family Athletic Center Saturday evening.
Wingate (3-5, 1-0 SAC) opened the game on a 4-0 run in the first 8:21 of the game. Two goals from Conor Gronbach led the Bulldogs' offense. Mars Hill's Parker Beaudry put the Lions on the board with 4:01 remaining in the first quarter. Ryan Ormerod and Jake Trafton traded goals 14 seconds apart to conclude the scoring in the first quarter. Wingate held a 5-2 lead heading into the second.
Both teams scored three goals in the second frame. The Lions (1-7, 0-1 SAC) scored the first three to tie the game at five. Noah Landriault scored his first career goal to start the run. Zac Carrigan and a man-advantage marker from Dima Ferreira knotted the game at five, but three straight, including two goals from Jeremy Sullivan, gave Wingate the 8-5 lead heading into halftime.
The teams combined for nine goals in the third quarter with Mars Hill edging the Bulldogs 5-4. Gronbach's hat-trick goal opened the second half 1:04 into the third frame. Ferreira and Beaudry's second goals of the game pulled the Lions within two. Josh Ferentinos' tally with 11:20 left in the quarter reestablished the three-goal lead for Wingate. The Lions responded with two goals in 18 seconds from the sticks of Alex Lipsky and Beaudry. Wingate once again pulled ahead by three taking the next two goals. In an end-to-end rush, Mars Hill netminder Ryan Kearney streaked up the middle of the field and blew a shot by Wingate's Jacob Ormerod for his first of the season.
Entering the fourth quarter down 12-10, the Lions were unable to get on the board in the final 15 minutes. Gronbach's fifth and sixth goals of the day, along with Sullivan's hat-trick goal secured the 15-10 victory for the Bulldogs.
Ryan Ahrens made nine saves in 47:56 for the win. Kearney matched Ahrens with nine saves of his own in the losing effort.
The Lions return home on Wednesday, March 21 with a SAC matchup versus Lincoln Memorial. The contest is slated for a 2 p.m. start.