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Laxmen Explode At Ohiri

UNH Succumbs, 18-8

By John B. Trainer

Tick tick tick tick tick tick tick tick...

The Harvard men's lacrosse team has not had a great year, to put it kindly.

First, the opening three games were rained/snowed/fogged out. Then, Harvard opened the season with four losses. Then, it started to display flashes of brilliance in losses to Brown and Princeton but lacked consistency.

But yesterday at Ohiri Field against New Hampshire, Harvard put it all together and broke out for a season-high 18 goals, moving Co-Captain Chad Prusmack to say, "We're an excellent team that sometimes plays poorly, not a poor team that sometimes plays excellently."

Boom!

Final score: 18-8, Harvard.

Don't look now, but with Saturday's win over Yale, Harvard (3-7 overall, 1-3 Ivy) has a little winning streak going.

"We played four quarters of excellent lacrosse," Prusmack said. "We took good shots and made very few mental errors."

All the quarters were excellent, but some quarters were more excellent than others--particularly the second and third periods.

The game was tied after 15 minutes of play, 3-3, but Harvard scored eight unanswered goals and ten of the next 12 over the next 30 minutes. All the Wildcats could do was mutter to themselves (and swear, which they did eloquently).

At one point, junior Mike Porter intercepted a Wildcat pass and sailed in unmolested on a breakaway. UNH goalie Chris Smith simply raised his arms over his head in a gesture of surrender. Porter scored.

It was that kind of afternoon.

Harvard Coach Scott Anderson felt good enough about his 13-5 lead to remove junior goalie Matt Camp (12 great saves) four minutes into the fourth quarter and put in sophomore Walter Sipe--who allowed three goals on 16 shots, but by then it was irrelevant.

The bench was cleared with a whopping five minutes to play.

"In the first quarter, we were rushing things, playing down to their level," said sophomore Steve Gaffney, who scored two goals in the game. "But then we started concentrating and doing the little things, taking advantage of mismatches and stuff like that."

There were plenty of mismatches to exploit. Harvard's team speed advantage over New Hampshire was the equivalent of pitting a Ford V8 against a Venetian blind. There was no comparison.

The Harvard attackers had a field day.

With their one-on-one speed advantage, they zipped around the field and took it to the net instead of relying on nifty passing to score.

Porter led his team with four goals, while sophomore James Ames and senior Ed Sim each tallied three.

Only one guy on the field consistently passed up the shot--freshman sensation Mike Eckert. Eckert racked up an unheard-of eight assists to go with his one goal.

Most of his assists were to teammates cutting to the goal for pointblank shots. Fully-automatic machine gun owners don't have it any easier than Harvard did yesterday.

All told, Harvard took 52 shots.

"We were shooting poorly in the first quarter," sophomore Pat Marvin said. "But we started talking about it in the huddle and things started to come together."

While the UNH defense did a pretty good impression of the Red Sea, the Harvard defense enjoyed a solid day against the slower UNH attack.

The Wildcats managed just 41 shots--27 of them in the first and fourth quarters, when Harvard was off its game. In the key second and third quarters, UNH mustered only 14 shots.

Most of the Crimson's defenders could outrun the New Hampshire attackers, and at one point senior defender Read Hubbard made a coast-to-coast run that nearly turned into a goal.

"A lot of credit belongs to the defense," Prusmack said.

Not that there wasn't enough to spread around. HARVARD, 18-8 at Ohiri Field UNH  3  0  2  3  --  8 Harvard  3  4  6  5  --  18

G: UNH--Hanchett (2), Golden (2), Deley, Presbrey. Harlow, Geler; Harvard--Porter (4), Amea (3), Sim (3) Gaffney (2), Nicklas, Marvin, Wojcik, Rice.

Westhelie, Echert At UNH--Daley (2), Presbrey (2), Hanchett: Harvard--Echert (8) Nicklas, Marvin, Woicik. St UNH--Smith 17; Harvard--Camp, 14, Sipe 2.

G: UNH--Hanchett (2), Golden (2), Deley, Presbrey. Harlow, Geler; Harvard--Porter (4), Amea (3), Sim (3) Gaffney (2), Nicklas, Marvin, Wojcik, Rice.

Westhelie, Echert At UNH--Daley (2), Presbrey (2), Hanchett: Harvard--Echert (8) Nicklas, Marvin, Woicik. St UNH--Smith 17; Harvard--Camp, 14, Sipe 2.

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