Stonehill Edges #4 Le Moyne, 7-6

Junior Lizzie Lane scored two second half goals to put Stonehill in front on its way to a big 7-6 win over #4 Le Moyne. (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)

Lane's two second half goals put Skyhawks in front, Armstrong preserves win with seven second half saves 

EASTON, Mass. (April 5, 2014) – Stonehill College, among teams receiving votes in this week's Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) Division II poll, claimed its biggest win of the season with a 7-6 triumph over Le Moyne College, ranked 4th in the IWLCA poll, in a big Northeast-10 Conference women's lacrosse clash at Timothy J. Coughlin Memorial Field at W.B. Mason Stadium this afternoon.

Junior Lizzie Lane's (Sandwich, Mass./Bishop Stang) two second half goals put Stonehill in front for good and classmate Ashley Armstrong (Northborough, Mass./Algonquin Regional) made seven of her ten saves in the second half to make the Skyhawks seven goals stand, including two stops in the final minute to preserve the one goal lead. The first of Armstrong's two last minute stops came on a free-position attempt, while the final stop came from close range with 16-seconds to go that sealed the win. It marks Armstrong's third-straight double-figure save effort and fifth of the season and she also posted four more free-position saves, including three in the second half.

In addition to her two big second half goals, Lane collected three ground balls and was a key part of Stonehill's strong defensive effort which has now conceded less than ten goals in four of its last five games. Senior captains Katherine McDonough (Westwood, Mass./Westwood) and Lauren Bonagura (Rockville Center, N.Y./Sacred Heart Academy) and sophomore Remi DiRe (Winchester, Mass./Winchester) also stood out defensively for the Skyhawks. McDonough collected three ground balls, while Bonagura had two ground balls and a caused turnover and DiRe chipped in with two ground balls and a draw control.

Junior Ashley Armstrong made seven of her ten saves in the second half, including two in the final minute, to clinch the win for the Skyhawks. (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)

Junior Mikayla Couch (Towaco, N.J./DePaul Catholic) also netted two goals for Stonehill, while senior Kelsey Shannahan (Mendham, N.J./Morris Catholic) added a goal, four draws, three ground balls and a caused turnover. Junior Brooke Rudden (Hopkinton, Mass./Hopkinton) and sophomore Caitlin Sweeney (Hollis, N.H./Hollis-Brookline) also chipped in with goals for the Skyhawks.

Senior Kathleen Conese (Liverpool, N.Y./Liverpool) led Le Moyne with a pair of goals, converting 2-of-3 free-position attempts, with a draw control and caused turnover. Classmate Victoria Nies (Syracuse, N.Y./Jamesville-DeWitt) added a goal, three ground balls, two draws and four caused turnovers, while junior Julia Suriani (Buffalo, N.Y./West Seneca East) registered a goal, ground ball and caused turnover.

Freshman Christina Humbert (Webster, N.Y./Webster Thomas) finished with 11 saves in goal for Le Moyne, with seven in the first half. Stonehill held a 23-21 edge in shots and a 9-6 advantage for draw controls, including 4-2 in the second half to help the Skyhawks win the possession battle. Turnovers finished even at 16 apiece, but Le Moyne's 16 came with just five caused turnovers for Stonehill.

Le Moyne opened the scoring 2:24 into the contest with a free-position goal by Conese. Couch quickly equalized for Stonehill with an unassisted goal 4:55 in. Junior Catie McKay (Penfield, N.Y./Our Lady of Mercy) regained the Dolphins lead with 21:20 left in the half off a feed by postgrad Marley Ciferri (Ithaca, N.Y./Ithaca). Neither team scored for nearly 12 minutes, but Le Moyne forged a three goal lead (4-1) with 8:50 to play in the half after goals by McKay and freshman Amari Pollard (Baldwinsville, N.Y./C.W. Baker) 43-seconds apart.

Stonehill scored the final three goals of the half to send the game into halftime deadlocked at four goals aside. Rudden scored with 7:17 to go with an unassisted strike, before Couch's second of the half drew the Skyhawks within one with 5:43 to play. Stonehill took advantage of a Le Moyne turnover in the final minute and Sweeney scored off a feed by senior Mary Lee Mahony (Yardley, Pa./Villa Joseph Marie) with 24-seconds left in the half.

Game Highlights

Stonehill extended the run to six goals by netting the first three markers of the second half, the first two on free-position goals by Lane in the opening 1:32, to take its first lead of the game. Shannahan gave the Skyhawks a three goal lead (7-4) with her 21st goal of the year with 18:08 to play that extended her point streak to 35 games dating back to 2011.

Stonehill was able to keep Le Moyne off the scoreboard in the second half until Conese netted a free-position goal with 3:13 to play, ending a 35-minute scoring drought. Stonehill won the ensuing draw, but Conese forced a turnover with 2:50 to play. The Dolphins earned a free-position attempt at the other end, but held for the possession before Nies drew the visitors within one with her 18th goal of the season with 2:19 remaining.

Le Moyne won the draw and after a timeout, earned a free-position attempt with 1:02 on the clock, but junior Laura Hoffman's (Canandaigua, N.Y./Canandaigua) shot was saved by Armstrong. Stonehill earned possession, but turned the ball over on the clear, giving the Dolphins one last chance, but Conese's shot from close range was stopped and held by Armstrong with 16-seconds left to seal the win.

Stonehill (6-4, 5-2 NE-10) is back in action on Tuesday when it visits rival Bentley University at 7 p.m. The Skyhawks return to W.B. Mason Stadium the following night to host Southern Connecticut State University on Wednesday at 7 p.m. Le Moyne (7-3, 4-2 NE-10) hosts Assumption College on Tuesday at noon.

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