ST. LOUIS, Mo.—The Fontbonne University men's lacrosse team opened its 2019 season on a cold and windy day at Centene Stadium. The Griffins played well, but it was the (RV) Missouri Baptist Spartans pulling away for the 11-4 win.
The Griffins (0-1), totaled 22 shots, 21 ground balls, and went 6-of-13 on clear attempts. The team also won nine face-offs. Individually, Connor Mallett, Reagan Chin, Matt Rech, and Michael Picciolo all scored.
In net, Dalton Teague made his debut and kept the Griffins in the outing after coming away with 13 saves.
Missouri Baptist (1-0), meanwhile, registered 40 shots and they got a three-goal performance out of Josh Zion. Andy Coulter, Jaxon Haas, and Ian Olenski netted two goals each.
In the first, the Spartans jumped on the board early at the 13:47 mark as Haas received a pass from Coulter. He flung his shot attempt behind his head and past Coulter for the 1-0 lead. Zion scored three minutes later to make it 2-0, but the Griffins answered right back.
Matt Rech ripped his first past Hunter Filla to trim the deficit down to 2-1 at the 9:38 mark. The Spartans, though scored twice more before the quarter ended to give them the 4-1 lead.
In the second, the Griffins were working its offense in the Spartans end near the 10:30 mark. After a couple attempts were missed, Picciolo picked up the ground ball and found twine to make it a 4-2 game at 10:05.
Zion and Coulter, however, each scored for the Spartans which gave them a 6-2 lead at the break. Missouri Baptist outshot Fontbonne 20-9 at halftime and forced 11 Fontbonne turnovers.
In the third, the Griffins fared much better. The team outshot the Spartans 11-7 and won three of the four face-off attempts. After Missouri Baptist expanded its lead out to 8-2, the Griffins kept battling and scored another at the 6:14 mark.
Patrick Kennedy found Chin and he was able to beat Filla for his first on the year. In the fourth, the Griffins opened with a face-off win and went to work quickly.
Brian Nguyen found a cutting Mallett and he scored to make it an 8-4 game just 15.0 seconds in. However, the Spartans scored twice on the man-advantage and added another at the 5:19 mark to go on for the 11-4 win.
The team returns to action next Saturday when they'll pay a visit to St. Mary (Kan.). Action begins at 3 p.m.
Fans make sure to stay updated on fontbonnegriffins.com throughout the year for full updates and recaps on the men's lacrosse team.
Make sure to follow us on all our social media accounts: Twitter (@FBUGriffins), Instagram (@fbugriffins) and Facebook (/FontbonneUGriffins).