MACON, Ga. – The Mercer men's lacrosse team opened the Kyle Hannan era in grand style on Saturday, downing Rollins by a 13-3 count in the official opening of the Moye Football & Lacrosse Complex.
Mercer's historical win marked the program's first season opening victory and came in conjunction with a bevy of team records. Junior attackman Cole Branch set a school record for points in a single game, tallying seven on the strength of four goals and three assists. His three helpers also tied the program's single-game record.
As a team, the Bears racked up a single-game record nine-assists, with six different players registering at least one. Mercer's 10-goal win was also the team's largest margin of victory in three years of program history.
The Bears jumped all over the Tars in the opening quarter, using an 8-1 shooting advantage to stake a 5-0 lead after the opening 15 minutes. In the second quarter, Mercer would tack on four more scores to take a commanding 9-1 lead into halftime.
Five other players joined Branch in the scoring column, with junior midfielders Eoin Collins and Harry Baker each booking a pair of goals. Junior attackman John Avent, sophomore attackman Ian Gelbach and sophomore midfielder Timmy Geran each tallied one goal.
Freshman goalkeeper Mike Nugent got the victory in his first collegiate start, allowing only two goals and collecting seven saves in the win. Junior goalkeeper Dillon Volk also saw time between the posts, allowing a single goal in the five minutes of work. Rollins junior goalkeeper Andrew Sheerin took the loss, allowing all 13 goals and making 11 saves.
Mercer returns to action at No. 4 Duke on February 17. Game time is scheduled for 1 p.m.