• High Point led 2-1 in the middle of the second quarter but broke out scoring five goals in 5:16 to pull away and cruise to a 15-7 victory in its Southern Conference opener.
• Senior Connor Robinson set a new career high with six points (4g, 2a) and tied Dan Lomas’ and Matt Thistle’s HPU record with five straight hat tricks.
• Freshman Asher Nolting posted a season high seven points with three goals and four assists and has led the team in points in all seven games.
HIGH POINT, N.C. – The High Point University men’s lacrosse team opened Southern Conference action with a convincing 15-7 triumph over Bellarmine in Vert Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Leading 2-1 midway through the second period, the Panthers (1-6, 1-0) broke through. Senior Connor Robinson tallied three straight goals to spark a 5-0 run spanning five minutes and 16 seconds to give HPU a 7-1 lead. From there, the Purple & White held off the Knights (2-5, 0-1) to pick up its first victory of the season. In total, High Point saw 11 different players tally a point and 11 with multiple ground balls in the tilt.
“I’m really happy for the guys because that was a total team effort,” head coach Jon Torpey said. “We had a great two weeks of practice, which is a unique thing in lacrosse to get two weeks off, but it allowed us to refocus on fundamentals and improve on things we saw through the first six weeks of the season. I’m proud of the effort we put forth for 60 minutes to get the win.”
Robinson set a career high with six points while tying career highs in goals (four) and assists (two). The New Westminster, British Columbia native notched his fifth straight hat trick in the contest to tie Dan Lomas and Matt Thistle for the program’s longest hat trick streak.
Joining Robinson with a big offensive day, freshman Asher Nolting also set career highs with seven points and three assists. By reaching three points in the game, Nolting tied Thistle’s HPU record for seven straight outings with at least three points.
Defensively, the Purple & White provided their best outing of the year. Led by junior Tim Troutner Jr. in goal, HPU held Bellarmine without a goal for the first 21:30 and allowed just two goals in the first half while making six saves. Overall, Troutner finished with 11 while senior Zach Tuell made one in the game’s final seconds.
The seven goals allowed are the fewest for High Point since March 17, 2017 at VMI.
HPU’s offense was able to find a rhythm as sophomore Davis Sampere went 9-of-15 and junior Brandon Savoie went 5-of-7 as the Panthers won 15 of the 26 face-offs. On the ground, High Point recorded a 37-24 margin with 11 players picking up at least two.
For the third consecutive game, freshman Clayton Krol caused two turnovers while senior Terrell Sands was credited with two of HPU’s 11 caused turnovers. The attackmen also got involved forcing turnovers as Bellarmine went 15-of-20 in the clear allowing a handful of transition opportunities, which the offense converted into goals.
Eleven different Panthers entered the scoring column as grad student Adam Dickson, seniors Chris Young and Peyton Garrett, sophomores Chris Price, Ricky Koehler and Mitchel Snyder and freshmen Tyler Stinson and Koby Russell all scored goals. Similarly, Snyder, Russell and sophomore Dalton Sulver added assists.
Both defenses controlled play early as neither team scored until Nolting converted a rebound into a goal with 0:27 left in the first. The lead grew to 2-0 before Bellarmine got on the board at the 8:30 mark of the second. Then Robinson took over.
The senior scored three straight goals in a four-minute span before adding two second-quarter assists as HPU outscored the Knights 6-1 over the final 7:53 of the half. That run allowed the Purple & White to take an 8-2 advantage into the break.
After halftime, the Knights couldn’t get any closer than five, 10-5 (1:24, 3rd), as the Panthers outscored their visitors 5-2 in the fourth to pull away.
The Panthers continue Southern Conference play next Saturday when they visit Richmond at 1:00 p.m.