KALAMAZOO, Mich. -- The Trine men's lacrosse team edged Kalamazoo, 6-5, in a defensive battle Tuesday evening at MacKenzie Field.
Nick Maher (DeWitt, Mich. / DeWitt) scored the game-winner, breaking a five-all tie with a shot from the wing with 4:07 to play. The goal was one of Maher's two tallies on the evening. The goal gave the Thunder the victory after the Hornets had fought back from as much as a four-goal deficit. Trine improved to 5-3 overall and evened its conference record at 1-1. Kalamazoo fell to 4-5 overall, 0-2 in conference play.
Kevan Barissi (Grand Rapids, Mich. / Forrest Hills Central) scored twice for the Thunder, while Neil Orr (Lombard, Ill. / Montini Catholic) notched a goal and an assist for a two-point effort. Conner Putman (Ridgefield, Conn. / Ridgefield) added a goal.
Joseph Steigmeyer (Fort Wayne, Ind. / Bishop Dwenger) earned the victory with five saves in net. Brandon Walters (Bloomfield Hills, Mich. / University of Detroit Jesuit) contributed to the defensive effort with a pair of caused turnovers.
Brett Fitzgerald scored three times to pace the Hornets' attack. Nate Silverman made eight saves in goal.
Trine scored the first four goals of the game, beginning with a tally by Orr just over a minute into the contest. Maher scored his first tally just over a minute later to give the Thunder a two-goal advantage less than three minutes in to the contest. Barissi scored both of his goals in the final three minutes of the first quarter to give Trine a four-goal advantage after the first 15 minutes.
The second quarter belonged to Kalamazoo as the Hornets scored three times. Fitzgerald scored twice and Doug Shipp provided the other goal during the quarter.
Putman stopped the three-goal Hornet run early in the third quarter, but Fitzgerald's final goal cut the deficit back to one, 5-4 at the end of the quarter. Kalamazoo tied things up 5-5 on a goal by Harrison Ramsay with 4:43 to play in the contest.
That set the stage for Maher's game-winner. The junior took a pass from Orr on the wing and ripped a shot into the back of the net to put Trine up 6-5 with 4:07 to play. The Thunder had to survive two man-down situations in the closing minutes, but the defense rose to the occasion to preserve the win.
Trine held Kalamazoo scoreless in four man-up situations. The Thunder entered the game with the 10th-best man-down defense in the nation. Trine also won 9-of-15 faceoffs, led by Jordan Batie's (Goshen, Ky. / North Oldham) 6-of-8 effort, and held a 32-25 edge in ground balls.
The Thunder return to action Saturday, Apr. 15 at Cavin. Faceoff is scheduled for 3:30 p.m.