OWINGS MILLS, Md. – The No. 8 Salisbury men's lacrosse team faced a three-hour delay to the start of its NCAA Division III tournament second-round contest against No. 7 Stevenson after being stuck in traffic on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, but the Sea Gulls came off the bus ready to play and took a 12-4 victory at Mustang Stadium on Saturday night to advance to the NCAA quarterfinal round.
"This was a big win, an impressive effort by our boys tonight," Head Coach Jim Berkman said. "I thought that we played really composed tonight and did a great job of attacking them in the right places and taking advantage of what their defense gave us tonight."
The Sea Gulls struck first in the contest, as junior James Burton ran from left to right near the middle of the box, cut back to the left, and planted a shot into the top-left corner of the goal for a 1-0 lead less than two minutes into the game.
Stevenson's Tony Rossi knotted the score one minute later, but Salisbury would close the half on a five-goal run.
With 9:36 left in the first quarter, the Sea Gulls found a transition opportunity, as junior Preston Dabbs ran up the right sideline and passed up to senior Sean Fitzgerald into the offensive box. Fitzgerald then found sophomore Carson Kalama for a one-on-one score on the crease with the Mustang goalkeeper.
Junior Thomas Cirillo then found the cage two-straight times in man-up situations to build a three-goal cushion at 4-1. At the 4:13 mark, Fitzgerald found Cirillo near the middle of the box for a 10-yard shot, before sophomore Nathan Blondino dished to Cirillo for a rip from the left wing just 72 seconds later.