The Hofstra Pride men’s lacrosse team dropped its final game of the regular season to the University of Massachusetts 14-6 on Friday night as the Pride failed to come back after a 10-goal streak by the Minutemen in the middle of the contest.
UMass, who is undefeated on the season, knocked the Pride out of the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) tournament last year in a 13-12 heart-wrencher. Coming into this game, Hofstra needed to secure a win to control its own destiny going into the conference tournament.
This road match started out pretty favorably for Hofstra, with the Pride trailing just 4-3 after one quarter thanks to a pair of scores by Jimmy Yanes.
But the second quarter was all Minutemen; UMass rattled off five scores in the frame followed by three to lead off the third. The Minutemen turned ground balls into accurate shots. Seven of UMass’ eight shots in the second quarter were on target.
Hofstra turned things around late in the third and outscored UMass 3-2 the rest of the way, but it wasn’t enough to get back into the game.
The Pride offense has sputtered lately. Hofstra has only gotten into double-figures in scoring once in the last seven games. After putting up more than 10 goals against the likes of North Carolina and Providence, it’s been a little surprising to see the offensive drought from Hofstra. After scoring 162 goals overall last season, Hofstra has just 114. It seems the Pride are still struggling to replace the production of Josh Byrne. Luckily, the Pride’s defense has improved over the same stretch, but it can’t afford to allow teams to go on runs like the Musketeers went on in this game.
UMass remains at a perfect 5-0 in CAA play with the win over Hofstra. The 10-4 Minutemen have won their last nine games in a row and are rolling heading into the CAA tournament.
With the loss, the Pride drop to 6-7 on the season and 2-3 in the CAA. Hofstra will have a rematch with UMass in the first round of the conference tournament on Thursday. Perhaps having just visited UMass will allow the Pride to learn from its mistakes and prevent another scoring run in the upcoming game. A Pride upset would be paramount to helping them advance to the NCAA tournament. Hofstra will need to win the CAA tournament to make the NCAA tourney, which the Pride haven’t done since 2011.