Men’s Lacrosse: Bellarmine tops VMI, 12-8
Trailing by a 5-4 count at the half, VMI attempted to keep pace with host Bellarmine Tuesday afternoon but could not keep up as the Knights escaped with a 12-8 victory at Owsley B. Frazier Stadium in Louisville, Ky.
The Keydets (1-1, 0-0) scored four goals in the second half and trailed by just two goals heading into the final period, but the Knights (2-5, 0-0) scored three goals in the final quarter to pull away.
Ryan Perouty and Michael Santos led the Keydets with three goals apiece as a pair of Keydets registered a hat trick for a second consecutive game. Senior Jon Fant and sophomore Scout Ripley each contributed one goal apiece. Fant also accounted for three assists while sophomore Hartley Jordan logged one helper.
“I liked the way our guys competed despite the result,” said VMI head coach James Purpura. “Credit to Bellarmine, they played tough and have an athletic squad. Certainly as we review the tape, there will be a lot of teaching opportunities for us as a young group to learn from and improve on moving forward. We have another quick turnaround as we prepare and move on to a very strong and Top 20 opponent in Richmond.”
Bellarmine opened the game with two quick scores but the Keydets rebounded with goals from Perouty and Ripley to even it at 2-2 early in the second period. The Knights would score three more goals in the second quarter while Santos scored twice to keep VMI in the game by halftime.
Fant scored early in the third quarter and Perouty and Santos added a few more scores, but Bellarmine’s three goals in the final eight minutes put the game out of reach for VMI.
The Knights were led by four goals from Benny O’Rourk while Landon Trout contributed three. Bellarmine goalie JC Higginbotham also played a large role in the win by registering 13 saves on the day in a complete 60 minutes in the circle.
Trejan Cannon was a force for VMI defensively by tallying four caused turnovers and seven groundballs. Sophomore goalie Anthony Merida totaled 15 saves throughout the contest for the Keydets.
VMI resumes Southern Conference play Saturday for its home opener when nationally ranked Richmond visits Drill Field No. 2. Faceoff is scheduled for a noon start in Lexington.