Davis leads Men’s Lacrosse to victory on opening weekend

Laurel McHale, Senior Writer

The Bison men’s lacrosse team is back. In their first road trip of the season, the Orange and Blue came out on top against Mercer, 16-14. A pair of first-year students shined in their debut, proving to be great additions to this squad.

The Orange and Blue seemed ready to go after their long trip to Georgia, as Connor Davis ’25, who scored six goals, said, “All the guys were super excited heading into the game. It was a very hectic and long trip and we just wanted to get onto the field. I’ve never been a part of a team with this much energy, so I was really looking forward to playing against Mercer. This team has been working hard since August and we finally got to play somebody else in another jersey.”

The game was a close one. The Bison held a 7-6 lead going into the third quarter at the half. The teams swapped goals in the third quarter, but the Bison remained ahead with a 12-10 lead. Mercer soon scored two goals in the first five minutes of the quarter to tie it up.

The Bison then netted four unanswered goals to solidify their dominance. During this run, Jack Feda ’23 netted two of his three goals of the game, both off of Cam Doolan ’25 feeds. Matthew Barkauskas ’22 also found the back of the net off of a Doolan assist, and Davis finished the run with a goal at 4:47 left to play. Mercer rounded out the scoring this quarter with two more goals.

In their collegiate debut, Davis and Doolan made some noise. Doolan logged five assists for the Bison. This was the highest recorded number of assists by a Bison in their collegiate debut. It was only one shy of the school record (six) set by Will Sands ’18 (2018 All-American and three-time All-Patriot League) in his 2015 freshman season.

Davis netted six formidable goals for the Bison, earning Patriot League Rookie of the Week and Patriot League Offensive Player of the week.

When asked how it felt after such a successful college debut, Davis responded,

“It’s been my dream to play division 1 lacrosse since I was three years old, so playing my first college game was something I looked forward to for a while. Winning your first college game is for sure something special and something I will always remember. It was really exciting getting back to our locker room at Mercer and celebrating as a team,” Davis said.

Davis matched the University single-game goal records set by first-years. In addition, Davis finished one shy of the seven goals in an opening game record set by Tommy Sopko ’21. Davis has made a name for himself across the Patriot League with his incredible first outing and will continue to do so moving forward.

In his first collegiate game, first-year Max Nolan ’25 earned the win by making 10 saves. Nick Crovatto ’22 and Conor McCusker ’23 went 17-33 against a Preseason All-SoCon faceoff specialist for Mercer. Preseason All-Patriot League Team selection Harry Wellford ’22 finished the game with two goals and two assists on the day. The Bison led in shots (29-24) and ground balls (36-26).

Crovatto earned Patriot League Face-off Specialist of the week, and Nolan earned Patriot League Goalkeeper of the week to round out the awards for the weekend.

The Bison look forward to proving themselves within the league for the rest of the season, and Davis has confidence in his team’s success moving forward.

“After going 2-6 last year, we for sure have a chip on our shoulder, and there is still a lot to do in order to reach our goal which is a patriot league championship. A lot of people are sleeping on us this year which is motivating everybody on our team,” Davis said.

The Bison men’s lacrosse team heads to Moon, Penn. to face the Robert Morris Colonials at 1 p.m. on Feb. 12.

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