Hofstra Pride starts the season right, 11–9 win against the Monmouth Hawks

The Pride gets ready for their season opener. (@MelissaAmrita)

HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. — The Hofstra Pride, ranked №36 in the NCAA Men’s Lacrosse RPI, began its season on a positive note Saturday afternoon defeating the Monmouth Hawks, ranked at №57. They clinched the first win of the season with an 11–9 victory at James M. Shuart Stadium.

Senior Josh Byrne had a great game scoring three goals with three assists.

“Everyone knows who 22 is. We’re not hiding it. He came onto the scene last year…and that was it,” said coach Seth Tierney about Byrne’s performance.

And Byrne wasn’t the only player to have a good game. Both freshmen Ryan Tierney along with junior Brendan Kavanagh each tallied their own hat tricks.

Being Tierney’s first game as a member of the Pride, and first game under his father’s coaching, a lot was unclear about the young attackman. But he certainly proved himself after scoring the first goal with only a little over three minutes into the first period.

The Monmouth Hawks started the game Saturday afternoon with a record of 1–0. (@MelissaAmrita)

“I was very comfortable, just because of the people around me that had me going up… like [Kavanagh] and [Byrne]. They always had my back, saying let’s go. The atmosphere of the team, kept me composed,” said an excited Tierney after his first win.

Tierney wasn’t wrong in the fact that Hofstra did look like a well-oiled machine despite being without injured midfielder Kris Clarke.

Byrne scored twice in the second quarter and once in the third even adding three assists — one in the first and two in the second — to make it a six-point game. Tierney not only scored the first goal of the game but also scored in both the second and third quarter, adding an assist to make a four-point game. And Kavanagh set a career best with three goals, including two in the first quarter and one in the first.

Goalie Jack Concannon also made an astounding 11 saves including a big one that would have cut the Pride’s lead to one point in the last 20 seconds of the game.

Yet despite the win, Hofstra does show that it still has a far way to go — losing their huge lead in the second half of the game to an incredible Monmouth rally that had fans wondering if the Hawks were on a verge of a comeback. They were allowed to score a total of four goals in the fourth quarter, two of which were done a mere six seconds apart in the final minute of the game.

Luckily for Hofstra, the Hawks didn’t outscore the Pride in the end — though they did outshoot Hofstra 41–26, picked up more groundballs at 31–21 and won 15 of the 21 face-offs.

This win marks the 44th time in all of its 69 openers that Hofstra has won. Hofstra now stands at 1–0 while Monmouth, who comes off of a 12–10 victory over Villanova, now stands at 1–1.

Next week, the Pride will head to New Jersey to face Princeton who also stand at 1–0, defeating NJIT 22–8 in their season opener.

“We have a new team and this is a different looking team. So we’ll put in a smart week of practice, we’ll get on the road Friday night, and we’ll see what we got,” said Coach Tierney.