Women's Lacrosse Seals Postseason Spot at Southern Conn. State, 15-12

Pino netted a career-high matching five goals to lead the Skyhawks past Southern Connecticut State (PHOTO BY Nancy Wright Pix)

Pino leads Skyhawks back from early deficit with five-goal performance

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (April 27, 2019) – Stonehill College erased an early five-goal deficit to claim a 15-12 decision over Southern Connecticut State University and clinch a spot in the upcoming Northeast-10 Conference Tournament in NE10 women's lacrosse action at Jess Dow Field this afternoon.

Stonehill (9-8, 6-7 NE10) earns its Conference-record 20th trip to the NE10 Tournament with the win and Saint Anselm College's 10-7 loss to 16th-ranked University of New Haven today. The Skyhawks are seeded eighth for next week's NE10 Tournament and will visit top-seeded and No. 1-ranked Le Moyne College (17-0, 13-0 NE10) for a quarterfinal round matchup on Wednesday at noon. Southern Connecticut State sees its season come to a close at 2-15 overall, including 1-12 in the NE10.

Sophomore Olivia Pino led the comeback effort for Stonehill with a career-high matching five goals, while junior Jennifer Wheaton totaled four points with a goal and three assists, giving her 98 points (64 goals, 34 assists) in 40 career games. The Skyhawks got two goals apiece from juniors Kaity Healey and Kenzie Pleshaw, sophomore Shannon Hughes and freshman Emma Sullivan. Sullivan also collected six draw controls, while Healey tallied three draws, three ground balls and two caused turnovers.

Sophomore Kaleigh Wright earned her first collegiate win with two saves over the final 26:38 in relief of junior Bailey Grant, who also had two stops in the opening 33:22. Senior Alexandra Takacs kept Southern Connecticut in the game with 23 saves over the first 37:26 of the game in the Owls goal, while sophomore Laura Morton made two saves in the final 22:34.

Senior Samantha Cozzolino led Southern Connecticut State with eight points, netting six goals to go with two assists, and six draw controls. Freshman Karlie Rowe added two goals for the Owls, while junior Morgan Chase contributed a goal and assist.

Sullivan scored two goals and added six draw controls in the win (PHOTO BY Nancy Wright Pix)

Southern Connecticut State scored the first three goals, including the opening pair by Cozzolino over the first four minutes, on its way to a five goal lead (6-1) after Cozzolino's third marker 10:01 into the game. She had a hand in five of the Owls first six goals, with three goals and two assists, dishing out assists on goals from sophomore Hailey Gordon and Rowe two minutes apart, before closing the opening run with her third goal.

Stonehill closed out the first half with seven-straight goals, including two each from Pino and Sullivan, to grab a two-goal lead (8-6) at the half. Five different players scored for Stonehill in the first half, despite 11 first half saves by Takacs.

Southern opened the second half with another three-goal run, including two more goals by Cozzolino, to regain the lead (9-8) after her fifth of the day, assisted by Chase, with 21:41 to play. The teams traded goals before Pino netted a pair just 32-seconds apart to give Stonehill an 11-10 lead with 12:49 on the clock.

Cozzolino's sixth of the day knotted the score for the fifth time in the game, but Stonehill sealed the win by scoring three in a three-minute span to grab a three-goal lead (14-11) after Hughes' second of the day with 7:26 remaining. Wheaton pushed the Skyhawks in front for good with her 29th goal of the year with 10:26 to play, and then Healey added her second of the contest with 8:02 remaining, before Hughes' 37th of the season.

Freshman Kelly Jagodzinski pulled Southern back within two (14-12) with 2:09 to play, but freshman Kendall Fressle capped the scoring for Stonehill with 59-seconds left.

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