HARVARD — The Bromfield boys lacrosse team learned a difficult lesson on Saturday afternoon: if you continue to take penalties and play short-handed, you will pay for it.
Visiting Nipmuc showed plenty of offensive potency when playing a man or two up, and that proved to be a major factor in the Warriors convincing 13-3 victory.
Nipmuc never trailed in the game, rolling to a 7-1 halftime lead by totally controlling play. The Warriors finished the game with a 24-13 advantage in shots on goal and pulled away despite some solid work in goal by Bromfield’s Scot Broadbent, who made 11 saves.
Broadbent was tested immediately, stopping a point-blank shot by Colin Jackson just 15 seconds into the game, but the Warriors maintained the offensive pressure and broke the ice when Josh Smith scored from close range. Nipmuc was a man up at the time.
Bromfield bounced back to tie the game on a strong individual effort from Jake Basnett, who made a strong, determined run and fired a bouncing shot into the net to make it 1-1.
Nipmuc bounced back and regained the momentum, getting four of the final five shots on goal over the remainder of the first quarter. Smith put the Warriors on top for good when he scored with a bouncing shot from outside the right post.
Less than two minutes later, Smith scored again, taking a perfect diagonal pass from Bob Migliacco at the left post and sending a shot under the cross bar to make it 3-1.
The Warriors capped the scoring in the quarter when they were a man up, Conor Riley’s 20-yard bullet under the cross bar giving the Warriors a three-goal lead after 12 minutes. Nipmuc owned a 7-3 edge in shots on goal in the quarter.
Less than three minutes into the second quarter, Smith extended the lead for the Warriors, taking a pass while cutting down the slot and scoring from close range.
Nipmuc owned a 6-3 edge in shots on goal in the quarter, but Warriors’ goaltender Tyler McElreath came up big on a pair of quality scoring opportunities by the Trojans.
D’Vonne Williams made a spin move and broke in from right wing, but his point-blank shot was denied. A minute later, Ryan Castro broke in from right wing, but his shot was turned away by McElreath.
The Warriors finished off the half with a pair of goals, including a tally by Migliacco, who cut in from the left wing, took a pass from Smith and ripped a shot inside the left post.
After the Warriors scored in the early minutes of the third quarter to extend the lead, the Trojans came to life with a pair of goals to slice into the lead.
Basnett scored his second goal of the name with another strong effort, beating a pair of Nipmuc defenders and firing a bouncing shot into the net.
Williams then made it 8-3 with an athletic play. The junior circled the net and scored from close range.
Nipmuc then closed the door on the Trojans’ offense with a combination of strong play from Sam Murten, Joe Bergstrom and Tyler Nicolette and the ability to maintain control of the ball offensively.
Nipmuc finished the third quarter strongly with four unanswered goals, including a pair by Smith (four goals, one assist) to build a 12-3 advantage entering the fourth quarter. One of the goals came with the Warriors a man up while another came with a two-man advantage. The visitors did a great job of moving without the ball offensively and those cutters were rewarded with passes in prime scoring range.
Bromfield had four shots on goal in the final quarter, but McElreath stopped all of them, and Nipmuc’s Riley finished off the scoring with an unassisted goal.