Stonehill Lacrosse Earns Preseason National Rankings

Senior co-captain Katherine McDonough heads the list of returning starters for Stonehill after earning second team All-NE-10 honors in 2013. (PHOTO BY Shane Bufano)

Skyhawks ranked eighth in both IWLCA and Lacrosse Magazine preseason polls 

EASTON, Mass. (February 6, 2014) – The Stonehill College women's lacrosse program is ranked eighth in a pair of NCAA Division II preseason poll released in the last few days.

Stonehill, which is coming off its seventh NCAA Tournament appearance last spring, is ranked eighth in both the Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) and Lacrosse Magazine preseason polls. The Skyhawks are one of five Northeast-10 Conference teams in the IWLCA preseason Top 15 and one of three in Lacrosse Magazine's preseason Top 10. Two-time defending NCAA Division II National Champions LIU Post is the preseason No. 1 in both polls, and will host Stonehill for a rematch of their NCAA Tournament quarterfinal clash last May on Saturday, April 12, at noon.

Stonehill will face eight teams appearing in the IWLCA preseason poll, five of which also appear in the Lacrosse Magazine poll. The Skyhawks open their 2014 season at Rollins College, ranked fourth by the IWLCA and sixth by LM, on Tuesday, March 11, in Winter Park, Fla., at 7 p.m. Stonehill will visit Florida Southern College, ranked 11th in the IWLCA poll, just four days later on Saturday, March 15, in Lakeland, Fla., at 11 a.m.

Stonehill will host No. 2 Adelphi University on Saturday, March 29, at W.B. Mason Stadium at 1 p.m., and No. 5/3 Le Moyne College on Saturday, April 5, at 1 p.m. The Skyhawks also face road tests at 13th-ranked University of New Haven on Saturday, March 22, at 1 p.m., No. 15 Bentley University on Tuesday, April 8, at 7 p.m., and at No. 9/9 Dowling College on Saturday, April 19, at 2 p.m.

Stonehill, under the direction of head coach Katie (Lambert) Conover, '03, in her seventh season, returns 17 letter winners, including ten starters, from last year's team which posted a 13-7 record overall, including a 10-2 mark in the Northeast-10, and made a return to the NCAA Tournament after finishing third in the NE-10 standings. The Skyhawks were defeated by eventual national champions LIU Post, 15-9, in the national quarterfinals after being edged by Adelphi in the NE-10 semifinals, 11-7.

Seniors Lauren Bonagura (Rockville Centre, N.Y./Sacred Heart Academy) and Katherine McDonough (Westwood, Mass./Westwood) have been named captains for the 2014 season. McDonough earned second team All-Northeast-10 honors last season, while sophomore Remi DiRe (Winchester, Mass./Winchester) earned a spot on the NE-10 All-Rookie Team. Senior Kelsey Shannahan (Mendham, N.J./Morris Catholic) is the Skyhawks top returning scorer after posting 43 goals and 15 assists for 58 points, while classmate Mary Lee Mahony (Yardley, Pa./Villa Joseph Marie) finished second on the team for assists with 23 to go with ten goals for 33 points. Junior Ashley Armstrong (Northborough, Mass./Algonquin Regional), who earned NE-10 All-Championship team honors last spring, started all 20 games in the Skyhawks goal and posted a 10.68 goals against average while averaging 6.6 saves per game in 1,135:05 played.

Stonehill will open its home schedule on Wednesday, March 19, when it hosts Assumption College for its Northeast-10 opener at 7 p.m.

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