SALISBURY, Md. – The No. 1 Salisbury University men's lacrosse team got back into the win column on Saturday afternoon with a 7-5 victory over Widener University at Sea Gull Stadium.
Senior midfielder Eric Kluge led the Gulls with three goals and three points. His first goal opened the scoring at the 14:16 mark in the first quarter as he sped past a Pride defender, drove down the right side and ripped a shot into the top-left corner of the goal.
Fellow senior midfielder Ryan Clarke increased the Gulls' lead to 2-0; he was one of four other SU players to score one goal in the contest.
A Widener goal by Johnny Casey cut the lead to one just before the end of the quarter. Casey and Tim Taylor both scored two to lead the Pride.
Salisbury outscored Widener 2-1 in the second quarter, as well, after senior attackman Evan Hammersly took a pass from junior midfielder Tyler Smith and scored from the right wing. After the Pride scored again, Kluge hit the back of the cage from 15 yards out on an assist from Clarke.
Holding a 4-2 lead at the half, Salisbury outshot the Pride, 20-10, winning 6-of-8 faceoffs and picking up more ground balls, 17-13, in the opening 30 minutes of play.
Taylor cut the SU lead to one at the 12:27 mark in the third quarter with his second goal, but the Sea Gulls would take a three-goal lead off goals from Kluge and junior attackman Rhett DePol. Kluge ran across the cage from left to right and cut inside to hit the upper left corner of the cage, and just 19 seconds later, DePol would drive down the left side to give SU the 6-3 lead.
Momentum appeared to switch in the fourth quarter as the Pride cut the lead to 6-5, but freshman attackman Brady Dashiell would ensure the Sea Gulls' victory with a score with only 1:50 remaining. He took a wide-open path to the goal down the right side and dunked a shot over the goalkeeper's left shoulder.
For the game, senior midfielder Tyler Granelli won 10-of-15 faceoffs, and the Gulls outshot the Pride, 37-26.
Junior goalkeeper Alex Taylor improved his record to 2-2 with the victory, making four saves in the process.
Salisbury will be on the road for its next game on Wednesday, as they get set to take on McDaniel College; the opening face-off is set for 3:30 p.m.