No. 8 Women's Lacrosse Defeats Hamilton 15-5, Advances to NESCAC Semi's
Issue   |   Tue, 05/03/2016 - 23:16

Although the Amherst women dropped their last regular season game this past Wednesday, April 27 against Trinity, they routed Hamilton, 15-5, on Saturday, April 30, in the quarterfinal round of the NESCAC championship.

Trinity took an early five-goal lead in the first half and despite picking up some momentum in the second half, the purple and white were unable to make up the deficit.

Trinity defender Ashley Stewart led the Bantams’ strong defensive effort, finishing with a game-high five caused turnovers and four ground balls.

Julia Crerend ’18 and Claire Cagnassola ’17 brought an end to Amherst’s scoring drought in the last eight minutes of the first half, setting the score at 5-2 heading into the break.

The purple and white came out strong at the start of the second half. Goals from Rachel Passarelli ’16 and Mary Grace Cronin ’18 brought Amherst within one goal of the Bantams.

Thanks to a stellar effort from Trinity senior Martha Griffin, however, the Bantams proceeded to go on a 6-1 run and bring the score to 11-5 with 7:48 remaining in the game. Kate Wyeth ’17 and Mia Haughton ’16 scored in the last five minutes of the game, cutting Trinity’s lead to four goals. Despite the last-minute effort from the purple and white, the scoring gap was too big, and Trinity topped Amherst 11-7.

“Trinity is a very strong team, and they outplayed us, but the general consensus after the game was that we didn’t play up to our potential,” Dakota Foster ’18 said. “I think that we were able to direct that anger into practice prior to the Hamilton game, and we certainly played like a different team against Hamilton.”

Amherst did not let this loss affect their confidence. The purple and white came out with fiery determination against the Continentals on Saturday.

From their initial five-goal run at the start of the first half, Amherst never let up its intensity. A hat trick from Passarelli in the first half helped the purple and white close out the half with a 7-2 lead. Amherst took advantage of free position shots, in particular, with three goals off set plays in the first half.

The purple and white then continued their strong play on both sides of the ball in the second half of the game, allowing only three Continental goals.

Netminder Christy Forrest ’16 led the defensive effort for Amherst, registering 14 saves on 19 shots against her in addition to leading the team with five ground balls.

Multiple goal efforts from Passarelli, Haughton, Coco Kusiak ’17, Kelly Karczewski ’18 and Cagnassola powered the purple and white to a 15-5 victory over Hamilton.

With this win over Hamilton in the first round of the NESCAC championship, Amherst will advance to a semifinal matchup against second-seeded Middlebury.

“We want to put ourselves in the best position to qualify for a strong seed in the NCAA tournament,” Foster said. “We’re looking forward to a rematch with Middlebury and the potential to advance to the NESCAC championship on Sunday.”

The Amherst women will continue their quest for a conference championship this Saturday, May 7 at Trinity. They face off at 2:30 p.m.