Golden Bears Advance to CCC Title Game with 18-5 Semifinal Victory over Salve Regina

Western New England clinched its eighth straight trip to the CCC title game with an 18-5 win over Salve Regina in the semifinals on Tuesday at Golden Bear Stadium. (Photo by Rachael Margossian)
Western New England clinched its eighth straight trip to the CCC title game with an 18-5 win over Salve Regina in the semifinals on Tuesday at Golden Bear Stadium. (Photo by Rachael Margossian)

Western New England will host Endicott on Friday afternoon at 4 p.m.

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (May 1, 2018) –
The top-seeded Western New England University men's lacrosse team secured its eighth consecutive appearance in the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) championship game with an 18-5 triumph over fifth-seeded Salve Regina University on Tuesday afternoon in a CCC Tournament semifinal round contest at Golden Bear Stadium. 

Western New England (12-6) will host second-seeded Endicott College in the CCC title game on Friday (5/4) afternoon at 4 p.m. The Gulls defeated sixth-seeded Roger Williams 8-5 in Tuesday's other semifinal contest. Salve Regina's season comes to a close at 11-7.

Top Performers
• Junior attackman Tim Breau (Lima, N.Y.) led the Golden Bears offensively, as he totaled six points with three goals and three assists.
• Senior midfielder Nicholas Beauchamp (Wilbraham, Mass.) recorded four points (three goals, one assist), while junior Jared Ward (Littleton, Mass.) and sophomore Johnny Shahpazian (New Providence, N.J.) scored two goals each.
• Junior Hunter Cocks (Walden, N.Y.) went 14-for-18 at the faceoff X, and sophomore defenseman Oskar Djusberg (Abington, Mass.) scooped up a game-high 12 ground balls.
• Senior goalie Steven Kerr (Hopkinton, Mass.) was impressive in the cage with 16 saves on 20 shots.

• Salve Regina senior attackman Andrew Fera (Cranston, R.I.) registered a hat trick, while senior Zach Makoske (Shoreham, N.Y.) and freshman Pat Leary (Wakefield, Mass.) chipped in with one goal and one assist each.

Game Review
Fera opened the scoring for Salve Regina just over two minutes into the contest, but Beauchamp answered for the Golden Bears 30 seconds later and Cocks buried an unassisted goal off the ensuing faceoff to put Western New England ahead for good.

Following an unassisted strike by Breau with 11:01 on the clock, Fera scored on a feed from Leary with 3:42 to play in the opening quarter to cut Salve Regina's deficit to one (3-2). Goals from freshman Jared Newall (Stratford, Conn.) and Breau later in the period extended Western New England's advantage to 5-2, however.

The Golden Bears stretched their lead to six (8-2) as sophomore Nick Gamba (East Islip, N.Y.), Breau and Ward all scored over the first 5:45 of the second quarter.

After Salve Regina pulled to within five (8-3) on Makoske's man-up goal with 1:51 left in the half, Shahpazian restored Western New England's six-score cushion with a goal in the closing seconds.

Leading by the same margin (10-4) after Beauchamp and Leary traded goals early in the third quarter, the Golden Bears closed out the frame with a 5-0 run to open up a 15-4 cushion heading into the final period.

Western New England outscored Salve Regina 3-1 over the final 15 minutes of play to extend the final margin to 13.

Notes
• Western New England outshot the Seahawks 42-34 and held a 59-31 advantage in ground balls.
• 11 different Golden Bears scored, while 13 players recorded at least one point.
• Western New England and Endicott will be meeting for the sixth consecutive season in the CCC Championship game. The Golden Bears are seeking their seventh CCC title and ninth NCAA Tournament appearance.