(Photo: Katherine Fitzgerald/WCSN)
In a matchup between two top-15 programs, experience proved key as No. 5 Arizona State pulled away late to win 10-7 over No. 12 Oregon State.
Right out of the gate, it was sophomore midfielder Zac Mathien who took the Beavers by storm, winning the faceoff and finding senior attackman Finn Wells for a quick goal.
Oregon State quickly responded to equalize the game at a goal apiece.
The teams would trade goals once more early on in the first quarter with sophomore midfielder Tommy Carrasco scoring on a one-man advantage for the Sun Devils.
After sitting out the 2015 season, junior Adam Beauchamp electrified the Sun Devils with two goals in the period.
An additional goal came on a shot from senior midfielder Henry Archie as the Devils led 5-2 after one.
The tide started to change after sophomore midfielder Mickey Schaefer ripped a pair of shots into the upper left corner just two minutes apart to bring the game within one goal.
Sloppy defensive errors by the Sun Devils and stellar goaltending by Oregon State senior Nick Widmer kept the game at a 5-4 score in favor of the Sun Devils as the teams headed to the locker rooms.
After Oregon State nearly tied the game, Wells wasted no time extended the lead on an acrobatic finish just outside of the crease only for sophomore attackman JR McGloughlin to cut the lead right back to one.
Arizona State entered the final period up 7-6.
The final period was all Sun Devils as Wells, Beauchamp, and junior attackman Rhett Rodgers all found the back of the net to give the Sun Devils 10 goals on the game.
The team possessed the ball for long periods of time, giving the young Arizona State defense a rest as well as junior goalie Russell Bartle, who made his first start after winning the starting job.
When it mattered most, Wells stepped up big with three of his four goals coming in the second half goals along with Mathien winning nearly all of his faceoff opportunities.
The Sun Devils will face the University of Southern California tomorrow at 1 p.m.