Freshman attackman Connor Kirkwood (Millburn, N.J./St. Peter's Prep) scored five goals in his first collegiate game to lead The University of Scranton men's lacrosse team to a 14-5 win over Muhlenberg in the team's season opener at Fitzpatrick Field on Saturday.
Scranton (1-0) also received three goals and an assist from junior midfielder Conor Carey (Long Beach, N.Y./Chaminade), two goals each from senior attackman Jake Haimson (Montville, N.J./Montville) and junior midfielder Jack Kiess (Glen Rock, N.J./Ramapo), and a goal and an assist from both junior attackman Matt Carfaro (Long Valley, N.J./West Morris) and junior midfielder Brendan McLaughlin (Garden City, N.Y./Garden City).
Muhlenberg (0-2) jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead just 4:02 into the game, but the Royals responded with the next five goals and went into halftime on a 7-1 run to take a 7-3 lead at the break. Kirkwood scored three times in the first half while Carey and Kiess twinkled the twine twice apiece.
The second half was more of the same as Scranton scored twice in the first three minutes and six of the first seven goals of the half to put the game away.
Freshman midfielder Peter Roche (Chester, N.J./Mendham) added an assist for Scranton, which also received 11 saves from junior goalkeeper Jeff Sabatini (Haddonfield, N.J./Haddonfield) in his first career start. Senior defender Patrick Sawyer (Doylestown, Pa./Downingtown Academy) had a team-high five ground balls and junior defender Kieran Pues (Long Beach, N.Y./Kellenberg Memorial) added four. Carey was the lone Royal with two caused turnovers.
Scranton was successful on 21 of 25 clear attempts and committed 14 turnovers while Muhlenberg had 16. The Mules held a slim 35-32 edge in shots and a 15-7 advantage in faceoffs won.
The Royals will be back in action on Wednesday, March 1, when they travel to Cortland, N.Y. to take on Cortland State at 3:30 p.m.