Gophers Find Offensive Groove in Second Half, Top Panthers

Gophers Find Offensive Groove in Second Half, Top Panthers

Ingram Sticks Four Goals in Kelly's Successful Debut

GREENSBORO, N.C. — Near white-out conditions resulting from snow and wind hampered both teams throughout most of the first 30 minutes this afternoon, but Goucher's offense came alive in the second half and the Gophers were able to present Brian Kelly with a 13-9 victory over Birmingham-Southern in his first game as their new head coach.

The conditions didn't prevent Goucher from getting on the scoreboard first as junior midfielder Pierce Ingram (Austin, Texas/Westwood) put his team up 1-0 just 15 seconds into the contest with an unassisted goal, but the Gophers (1-0) were able to add only one more goal to their total before time expired in the first half. After 30 minutes, the Panthers (1-1) owned a 4-2 advantage.

The sun was shining and the snow had melted by the time the second half got under way and that seemed to ignite Goucher's offense. Less than a minute into the third quarter, Sam Morgan (Wilmot, N.H./Kearsarge Regional) scored, reducing Birmingham-Southern's lead to 4-3.

A three-goal run later in the period that started with Ingram's second goal of the contest and continued on with goals by Mike Russo (Frederick, Md./St. John's Catholic Prep) and Dylan Zook (Purcellville, Va./Loudoun Valley) put Goucher up 7-6, but the Panthers drew even on a goal by Matt Ivie with 1:44 left to play.

After the two teams traded goals in the opening 3:41 of the fourth quarter, the Gophers reeled off five consecutive goals. The 5-0 run, which provided the defending Landmark Conference champions with a 13-8 cushion with only 2:02 remaining, began with an unassisted goal by Zachary Fratella (Wilmington, Del./Brandywine) and featured two more goals by Ingram, who finished with four goals and a pair of assists.

Fratella contributed three goals to the win.

Defensively, senior defenseman Bryce Carson (Wyomissing, Pa./Lancaster Country Day School) caused five turnovers and was credited with four ground balls, and senior goalkeeper Connor Mishaw (Wilmington, Del./Brandywine) made 15 saves.

This was the first meeting between the two schools in the sport of men's lacrosse. Birmingham-Southern, champion of the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference last season, is the first of three participants in the 2012 NCAA Division III Men's Lacrosse Championship that Goucher will face in its first three games this season. The Gophers will host Washington (Md.) on Saturday, Feb. 23, on Beldon Field and then travel to face Gettysburg the following Wednesday.