The No.2 Genesee Community College men's lacrosse team overcame a slow start to down visiting Dean College (MA) 17-4 in the opening game of the Region III playoffs on Wednesday night.
Neither team got much going to begin the first quarter and Genesee was forced to go on the penalty kill early. After successfully killing off a man-down situation, Marcus Palvino gave GCC a 1-0 lead just shy of eight minutes into the opening frame.
Dean tied it just 30-seconds later and the Cougars again faced a penalty kill situation, this time down two men. Genesee successfully killed off both penalties and after returning to full-strength, Jonathan Gill scored his first of six goals in the game to give GCC a 2-1 lead with five-minutes remaining in the first.
Charlie Evans made it 3-1 after the Cougars killed off another penalty and Genesee took a two-goal lead into the second.
Christian Reiller and Cameron Seneca scored the first two goals of the second to put GCC in front 5-1 and the penalty kill came through again before goals from Reiller and Gill gave Genesee a 7-2 lead. The Cougars took a 7-3 lead into the break.
The third quarter was all Genesee as the home team out-scored the visitors 6-0 in the period to take a 13-3 lead into the fourth.
Seneca answered an early fourth quarter Dean goal before Gill recorded three consecutive goals to end the game and advance Genesee to the Region West Championship and a chance at an automatic bid into the NJCAA National Tournament.
Gill finished with six goals and an assist, Reiller added three goals and three assists, Palvino scored four times and also had an assist, Seneca finished with two goals and two assists, Tyler Skowronski and Saxon Weil each had two assists and Chris Rabung scored once.
Along with his goal, Evans was 6-9 on face-offs, Mike Breindel was 6-9 and Mike Tolli was 4-6.
Jordan McElligott and Pete DiLaura led the defense with four takeaways and seven ground balls each and Brady Lawrence made 23 saves in net.
Genesee will play for their chance at the automatic bid on Saturday at 2:30 p.m. Opponent to be determined.