PORTLAND, ME – Saint Joseph's College (3-5, 3-0 GNAC) topped Mount Ida College (2-6, 0-4 GNAC), 12-10, in a Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) women's lacrosse contest at Deering Memorial Stadium on Tuesday afternoon. Senior Cassie Diplock (Augusta, Maine) tallied four goals, six ground balls and four caused turnovers in the victory.
With the score tied at 7-7 going into the second half, the Monks managed to control the pace of play in the latter stanza, as the hosts owned a 27-7 lead in shots and a 26-13 advantage in ground balls en route to outscoring the Mustangs by a 5-3 margin over the closing 30 minutes.
Sophomore Mary Leasure (Portland, Maine/McAuley) scored three goals for the Monks while senior Anneka Adame (San Diego, Calif.) produced two goals and an assist with five ground balls and senior Macy Pagurko (Augusta, Maine) added a goal, three assists and seven ground balls in the conference triumph. Junior Lizzie Calnan (Westport, Mass.) and sophomore Elizabeth Elcock (Westwood, Mass.) also found the back of the cage for the hosts.
Senior defender Rachelle Messuri (Atkinson, N.H.) scooped up a game-high 10 ground balls while senior Krystal Walsh (Springvale, Maine) chipped in with a pair of assists and six ground balls for Saint Joseph's. Senior Elizabeth Giacchino (Melrose, Mass.) and Haley Nason (Saco, Maine) split time in the cage, with the latter earning the victory after making two saves in the second half.
Junior Amanda Bowen (Randolph, Vt.) netted a game-high five goals with seven ground balls and three caused turnovers for the Mustangs. Senior Molly Sheppard (Brookhaven, N.Y.) chimed in with two goals and seven ground balls and freshman Nikki Kinnen (Salem, N.H.) scored a pair of goals for Mount Ida in a losing effort.
Junior goalie Sammy Levitt (Wayland, Mass.) kept the Mustangs in the game by making 19 saves, including 12 in the second half alone and four on SJC free-position attempts.
The Monks trailed early, as Bowen scored her third goal of the afternoon to put the visitors up by a 4-2 margin with 18:39 remaining in the first half. Saint Joseph's proceeded to net four unanswered markers, with the final tally of the surge – scored by sophomore Leasure - lifting the Royal Blue to a 6-4 edge just over eight minutes later.
Mount Ida responded with three straight markers, as Sheppard, Bowen and Rebecca Beaulieu (Weare, N.H.) found the back of the cage to provide the Mustangs with a 7-6 edge with 1:41 before the break. Diplock scored on a free-position attempt 20 seconds later to knot the game at seven-all heading into intermission.
Halftime adjustments doled out by the SJC coaching staff paid immediate dividends, as the Monks received goals from Diplock, Adame and Pagurko in the first five minutes of the second stanza to make it a 10-7 game with 25:32 left in the contest.
Sheppard made it a two-goal proposition with her second marker of the game at the 23:41 mark, a tally that was negated by an Adame score just over three minutes later. Bowen netted her fifth of the contest with 12:04 left to cut the Mustangs' deficit down to 11-9, a score that held true until Diplock potted a free-position tally with 3:56 on the clock.
The Mustangs, taking advantage of a turnover in the Monks' defensive end, managed to make the closing minutes uncomfortable for the hosts when Kinnen scored off a Kaitlyn Affhauser (Cheshire, Mass.) feed with 2:00 minutes left. Mount Ida collected the ensuing draw control, but Nason turned a Sheppard shot away with 55 seconds remaining and Diplock, after forcing a turnover, raced downfield to run out the clock.
With the victory, Saint Joseph's improves to 4-1 in the history of the series with Mount Ida College and has now defeated the Mustangs in three-consecutive meetings dating back to the 2012 campaign. Four of the five meetings between the conference counterparts have been decided by three or fewer goals.
Both teams host conference contests on Saturday when Saint Joseph's faces first-year varsity program Johnson & Wales University at 4:00 PM and Mount Ida takes on Norwich University at 12:00 PM.
Saint Joseph's College is Maine's only Catholic liberal arts college, providing a supportive, personalized and career-focused education for more than 100 years. From its 430-acre campus on the shores of Sebago Lake, the College offers more than 40 undergraduate programs to a population of approximately 1,000 students. Saint Joseph's College Online provides certificates, undergraduate and advanced degrees for working adults through an online learning program. For more, visit www.sjcme.edu.