Vetter scored three goals in Wednesday night's quarterfinal win and leads the Skyhawks in scoring and draws. (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)
Fourth-Seeded Skyhawks back in NE10 semifinal round for 18th time after one year hiatus
EASTON, Mass. (May 5, 2017) – Fourth-seeded Stonehill College, ranked No. 17 in this week's Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) Division II poll and eighth in the NCAA Division II East Region rankings, notched its eighth-straight win over a Northeast-10 Conference opponent in Wednesday night's quarterfinal round of the 2017 NE10 Women's Lacrosse Tournament. The Skyhawks head back to the spot of their last defeat at the hands of a league rival just over a month ago when it visits top-seeded and No. 1-ranked Le Moyne College for semifinal round action of the NE10 Tournament on Saturday at 11 a.m.
Admission for the NE10 Tournament matchup at Ted Grant Field in Syracuse, New York, will be $6.00 for adults, $4.00 for children and senior citizens and $1.00 for students from participating teams with valid ID. The game will also be webcast live via the Dolphins Sports Network and available at stonehillskyhawks.com. Le Moyne will host both NE10 semifinals on Saturday, as well as the Sunday championship at 1 p.m. Second-seeded Adelphi University (16-1, 12-1 NE10) and third-seeded University of New Haven (14-3, 11-2 NE10) will meet in Saturday's second semifinal at Grant Field at 2 p.m.
Stonehill (12-6, 10-3 NE10), the only program to appear in all 19 NE10 Tournaments in Conference history, have reached the NE10 semifinals for the 18th time after a one year hiatus following a 16-9 triumph over fifth-seeded and No. 14/19 Pace University at W.B. Mason Stadium on Wednesday night. Stonehill featured nine different goal scorers as the Skyhawks defeated the Setters at W.B. Mason Stadium for the second time in five days, with senior Elizabeth Vetter (Great River, New York/East Islip) and freshmen Kaitlin Healey (Westwood, Massachusetts/Westwood) and Jennifer Wheaton (Dartmouth, Massachusetts/Dartmouth) potting three goals apiece. Junior Brianna Doherty (Walpole, Massachusetts/Walpole) registered a career-best four points with a goal and career-high three assists for the Skyhawks.
Isner is one of the Skyhawks two co-captains on the defensive unit which ranks third in the NE10 for team GAA. (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)
Le Moyne (17-0, 13-0 NE10), ranked No. 1 in the IWLCA Division II poll, but No. 2 in the Nike/US Lacrosse Magazine poll, held serve with a 13-1 triumph over eighth-seeded Franklin Pierce University in its NE10 quarterfinal at Grant Field on Wednesday. The Dolphins featured a trio of three-point performers in seniors Molly McGuane (Marcellus, New York/Marcellus) and Vicki Graveline (Syracuse, New York/West Genesee) and freshman Sidney Hall (Adams Center, New York/South Jefferson), who all recorded two goals and an assist in the win.
Saturday will mark the tenth meeting all-time between the two programs, the third in postseason play – all of which have been in the NE10 Tournament. Le Moyne holds a 7-2 advantage in the all-time series after notching a 10-6 victory at Grant Field in Syracuse on April 1, marking Stonehill's last loss to an NE10 opponent. Hall scored five of the Dolphins ten goals, while classmate Hannah George (Johnson City, New York/Maine-Endwell) made five saves in goal. Vetter had a hand in three of the Skyhawks six goals with two goals and an assist, while freshman Bailey Grant (Chelmsford, Massachusetts/Chelmsford) recorded a then season-high eight stops in her second career start.
Stonehill and Le Moyne have split their two previous NE10 Tournament encounters, with the Skyhawks posting an 11-10 first round triumph at W.B. Mason Stadium in 2014 after the Dolphins registered a 15-7 victory in Garden City, New York, in the 2011 semifinals. Saturday will mark the first postseason encounter between the two in Syracuse, with Le Moyne winning all four of Stonehill's previous visits to Grant Field including this year's regular season result.
Stonehill, winners of a Conference-high nine championships, seeks to earn as 12th trip to the NE10 Championship game, but it's first since 2010. The Skyhawks are 8-1 since the April 1 loss at Le Moyne, with the lone loss against then No. 6/13 NYIT on April 22. Stonehill is 2-6 against nationally-ranked opponents this season following its back to back wins over Pace. Stonehill boasts one of the top defensive units in the NE10 with a 9.06 team goals against average that ranks third in the Conference (21st nationally), while also ranking second in the NE10 with 163 caused turnovers and totaling a Conference-high 348 ground balls.
Wheaton has totaled 16 goals over the Skyhawks last five games, including three in Wednesday's semifinal win. (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)
The defensive unit is spearheaded by a pair of All-Americans in senior co-captain Cara Corvino (Dorset, Vermont/Burr and Burton Academy) and junior Kelly Healey (Westwood, Massachusetts/Westwood), as well as senior co-captain Erika Isner (Farmington, Connecticut/Farmington) and classmate Michaela Brown (Pleasantville, New York/The Ursuline School). Corvino leads the team and ranks second in the NE10 with 36 caused turnovers, while Isner is 15th in the Conference with 20, while ranking seventh with 44 ground balls.
Grant has emerged as Stonehill's starting goalkeeper in her first collegiate season, having posted an 8.96 goals against average (3rd NE10/13th nationally) and .427 save percentage with 6.1 saves per game in 709:43 over 13 games played. She has started the last 11 contests with the Skyhawks posting an 8-3 record since becoming the starter.
Junior Taylor Shannahan (Mendham, New Jersey/Morris Catholic) and Vetter lead a strong midfield unit for Stonehill. Shannahan is second on the team with 22 caused turnovers (8th NE10) and leading the team with 61 ground balls (2nd), while ranking fourth on the team in scoring with 21 points, netting 21 goals to go with a team-high 11 assists. Vetter is the team's top scorer with 40 points and 37 goals to go with three assists, while collecting a team-high 46 draw controls (14th NE10), 34 ground balls and 11 caused turnovers.
Stonehill doesn't feature a player ranked inside the top 30 among NE10 leaders for scoring, but has six with 20-plus goals to present a balanced offensive attack. Wheaton leads the attack unit with 33 goals and three assists for 37 points, leading the team with four game winning goals, to go with 39 draw controls, 25 ground balls and 11 caused turnovers. She has at least a goal in all but two games during her freshman season, including five straight games with multiple goals, scoring 16 markers over the last five contests. Senior Shannon Booth (Pearl River, New York/Nanuet) has contributed 30 goals and six assists for 36 points, while freshman MacKenzie Pleshaw (Franklin, Massachusetts/Franklin) has totaled 29 goals and two assists for 31 points in her first collegiate season.
Shannahan leads the Skyhawks in assists and ground balls, while ranking second for caused turnovers. (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)
Le Moyne is one of two undefeated programs in all of Division II women's lacrosse, doing so with a solid defensive crew which ranks second in the NE10 with a 5.47 team goals against average, while ranking third in scoring with 13.53 goals per game. The Dolphins have allowed more than ten goals just once this season – a 14-11 triumph at New Haven on April 8.
George ranks second in the NE10 with a 5.47 goals against average and .521 save percentage, having played all 1,020 of Le Moyne's minutes in her first collegiate season, averaging 5.9 saves per game. Junior Kelly Gaffney (Florham Park, New York/Mount Saint Dominic Academy), with 16 caused turnovers and 26 ground balls, and sophomore Monica Sanna (Pittsford, New York/Pittsford) lead the Dolphins defensive unit in front of George.
Graveline leads the midfield unit and is Le Moyne's top scorer with 63 points (11th NE10) and 44 goals (10th), adding 19 assists (11th), also leading the team with a Conference-high 42 caused turnovers and 55 ground balls (3rd) to go with 24 draw controls. Hall has added 30 goals and 15 assists for 45 points, while junior Jacqueline Pardee (Camillus, New York/West Genesee) has added 35 goals and five assists for 40 points and sophomore Maddie Knapp (Watertown, New York/South Jefferson) has dished out a team-high 26 assists (4th) with ten goals for 36 points.
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2017 Northeast-10 Conference
Women's Lacrosse Tournament
Wednesday, May 3 (at higher seeds)
#1 Le Moyne 13, #8 Franklin Pierce 1
#4 Stonehill 16, #5 Pace 9
#2 Adelphi 16, #7 Bentley 1
#3 New Haven 13, #6 Assumption 5
Saturday, May 6
Ted Grant Field // Syracuse, N.Y.
#4 Stonehill (12-6, 10-3 NE10) at #1 Le Moyne (17-0, 13-0 NE10), 11 a.m.
#3 New Haven (14-3, 11-2 NE10) vs. #2 Adelphi (16-1, 12-1 NE10), 2 p.m.
Sunday, May 7
Ted Grant Field // Syracuse, N.Y.
Semifinal winners, 1 p.m.