Two goals from junior midfielder Drew O’Connell pulled the Eagles within one goal, then senior midfielder Ben Alpern scored the game-tying goal on a feed from Gallahue and followed with what proved to be the winner on a pass from Jack Sharrio with 1:56 to go.
Senior Ben Anthony added the insurance goal with 1:21 left.
“We wanted to move it a lot on attack, get a lot of screening up top on the crease so I saw Jack come around and come to his right and I cut and they left me open,” Alpern said. “On the tying goal, I don’t even think (Gallahue) meant to pass it to me. I think he was trying to go up top, but I just reached up and put it in. It went really fast, but it was pretty cool to score against my hometown.”
Alpern finished with three goals, while Gallahue led all scorers with four goals and one assist. Gallahue’s final goal was his most impressive. After getting tripped and a flag being thrown, Gallahue fell to the ground but maintained possession. He rolled over and skipped a shot past Beverly goalie Kevin Lally to cut the Panthers’ lead to 10-7.
O’Connell had two goals for the Eagles, Anthony had one goal and two assists, and Shawn Waldron and Sharrio also scored for St. John’s.
Abate and Ty Martz each had three goals for Beverly and Nick Albano chipped in two goals and one assist. Lally was sharp in net for Beverly.
The Panthers may have suffered their first loss of the season in this game, but it wasn’t a total loss.
“We know we can play with anyone and Brendan (Flaherty) and Dom, Ty Martz, Kevin Lally are just as good as anyone and I think they know that. The problem is we kind of ran out of steam. It’s a learning experience,” Pynchon said. “They’re not in our conference, not in our division, we don’t have to beat them again to win a state championship. In the long run it’s the best thing that could happen to us. This is why we play them.”