Keuka men's lax captures NEAC regular season title

Staff Writer
The Chronicle Express

The road to a North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) men’s lacrosse championship will run through the three-time defending champions from Keuka College after the Storm wrapped up the regular-season title with Tuesday’s 19-4 triumph over SUNYIT at the Jephson Community Athletic Complex.

Senior Connor Latimer of Whitby, Ont. scored seven points (three goals, four assists) and junior James Voigt of Penn Yan added four goals and two assists to power the Storm (11-0, 7-0 NEAC).

Sophomore Matt Beebe of Syracuse added three goals with one assist and freshman Jamie Kuppel of Liverpool added two goals with an assist as the Storm earned their 23rd consecutive win dating to the start of the 2013 season.

Entering play Tuesday, Keuka College is one of three undefeated Division III teams in the country, along with No. 1 RIT and Denison (Ohio) University. Both RIT and Denison are 15-0.

Keuka College will now host a NEAC semifinal contest April 30. The NEAC championship is May 3.

Latimer now has 33 goals and 23 assists in 11 games and is averaging 3.0 goals per game with 5.1 points per game. He ranks 11th in the country among Division II student-athletes in points per game, and is 28th in goals per game.

Sophomore Brendan King of Auburn added two goals while classmate Sam Cooper of Corning, had one goal with one assist

Seniors Mike Donals of Livonia and Nick Judge of Clifton Springs each added goals, as did juniors Cory Gray of Seneca Castle and Derek Pfeiffer of Lee Center.

Senior Kenny Cannon of East Syracuse collected six groundballs, while freshman Matt Mahalick of LaFayette had five groundballs and Kuppel added four groundballs in the win.

Senior Zachary Koczent of Geneva won 10 of 15 faceoffs while Mahalick won 8 of 11 faceoffs.

Senior Scott Miller of Penn Yan caused four turnovers for the Green and Gold, who held the Wildcats (2-11, 1-5) to one goal in each quarter.

Junior Eric Saltrelli of Webster improved to 7-0 after making 10 saves through the first three quarters. Senior Cameron Gormel of Rochester came on in the fourth and made two saves while allowing one goal.

Voigt scored twice while Pfeiffer, King, Judge and Latimer added tallies as the Storm led 6-1 heading into the second quarter.

Beebe added a pair of goals and Latimer, Voigt and Kuppel also scored in the second as Keuka College took an 11-2 lead into halftime and cruised to its 25th straight NEAC victory.

The Storm host SUNY Canton at 4 p.m. Friday on Parents’ and Senior Day, and the Green and Gold will honor 12 student-athletes for their hard work and dedication to the program.

The seniors are: Cannon, Donals, Gormel, Judge, Koczent, Latimer, Miller, Kyle Ackart of Mechanicsburg, Pa., Jeff Roth of Honeoye Falls, Nick Scherer of Oneida, Andrew Smith of Livonia and Justin Strain of Hamburg.