MADISON, N.J. – Mercer surged to a 6-0 lead in the first quarter and used the early advantage to help cement a 10-7 win over NJIT on Friday night. Eight different Bears scored in the win and Mercer capitalized on all three of its man-up opportunities.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Bears shutout the Highlanders in the first quarter, 6-0, as three players scored their first career goals. NJIT opened the second quarter with a 3-0 run to cut Mercer’s lead to 6-3 with 10 minutes to play until halftime. With 4:18 on the clock, Matt Quinn dished out his second assist on the day and Jake Nelson scored to make it 7-3 with the final goal for either team prior to intermission.
Lucas Wittenberg and Rahill started the second half scoring, but the Highlanders answered with a pair of their own goals, keeping the Bears’ lead at four, 9-5, entering the final period. Pascal Coombs scored his second goal of the day, and the last for the Bears, early in the fourth quarter. Mercer kept NJIT from adding to the tally until the final minutes, as the Highlanders scored twice in the last four minutes of play, including a buzzer-beater goal at the end. Fortunately for Mercer, NJIT’s rally was too little too late as the Bears held the Highlanders off for the 10-7 win.
PLAYER OF THE GAME
Matt Quinn led Mercer with four points off a goal and a career-high three assists. He also grabbed a career-high four ground balls.
STAT OF THE GAME
The Bears were extremely efficient in clears, going 17-for-18 on the night.
· Chris Rahill returned to the field for the Bears, scoring two goals and scooping up a ground ball in his season debut.
· Pascal Coombs scored a career-high two goals off two shots. Both of his goals were on man-up opportunities.
· Matt Quinn led the Bears with four points off a career-high three assists and a goal. He also grabbed a career-high four ground balls.
· Lucas Wittenberg added a goal and an assist to finish the day with two points.
· Gabe Anderson, Michael Quinn and Jake Sadd each scored their first career goal in the win.
· Joshua Adams, Patrick deHueck, Mikey Ewing and Jackson Teague each dished out an assist.
· Will Beecham grabbed a season-high five ground balls and was 4-for-6 at the faceoff X.
· Kiel Brennan was 7-of-14 at the faceoff X and had three ground balls.
· Colin Massa set season highs of four ground balls and two caused turnovers.
· As a team, Mercer tied its season highs of 18 points and eight assists and set a new season high with 29 ground balls. The Bears also turned the ball over a season-low 11 times.
· Mercer: 2-3, 0-0 SoCon
· NJIT: 0-6
· Mercer: At Wagner on Sunday, March 12 at 12 p.m.
· NJIT: At Army West Point on Monday, March 13 at 3 p.m.