The Keene State College women’s lacrosse team edged out a tough home win against Castleton University as senior attack Kaitlin Nolan led the way in scoring on Tuesday, April 12.
The Owls struck first as junior midfielder Jenna Bellano scored on a free position chance before assisting Nolan after four minutes of play. Nolan scored once again, this time in unassisted fashion before the Spartans answered with a goal from junior attack Chantel Wilkin. Nolan assisted junior attack Taylor Graf and first year midfielder Samantha Ballard, before sophomore midfielder Tori Weinstock capped off a three goal flurry for the Owls, earning them a 6-1 lead.
The two teams then battled closely, exchanging the next five goals as senior attack’s Brianna MacKay and Maria Ploof scored for the Spartans while Ballard and junior attack Kelly Chadnick netted goals for the Owls, making the halftime score 8-4. With the Owls leading in the second, the two sides continued to keep the game tight with MacKay scoring an unassisted goal before Nolan threaded a goal for the Owls, which brought back their five goal lead.
The Spartans responded scoring three straight with the accomplices being MacKay and sophomore’s Emily Cross and Nadine Downing, with MacKay and Cross scoring just 12 seconds apart from each other. With the score 12-10, Graf netted an assist from Bellano to seal the lead and the win, earning the Owls the 13-10 victory.
On Saturday the number 13 would show up again, proving lucky for the KSC women as they were able to squeak out another close contest against the Southern Maine University Huskies.
Huskies’ senior attack Sarah Pelligrinelli struck first in just 34 seconds to set the tone. The Owls soon responded aggressively with the next nine goals. Bellano tied the game at 1-1 unassisted before Graf assisted Farland, Bellano and Nolan. With the score 4-1 the Owls continued to pour it on with a marker from Ballard off an assist from Bellano, followed by a score of her own off a feed from Graf. Graf then tossed another helper to Chadnick.
With a two-player down advantage due to penalties, Farland and Nolan netted goals to make the score 9-1. With a large deficit the Huskies managed to stop the bleeding with a free position goal from first year Hannah LaSalle, but the Owls reclaimed the momentum before the end of the half with two goals from first year midfielder Erica Stauffer and one from Ballard.
In the second the Huskies went on a 6-1 run with Heather Everett, Shauna Robert, Sam Campobasso and Pelligrinelli scoring the first four goals of the half. After having their lead cut to 12-6, Farland scored the Owls only goal of the half before a much needed defensive stand took place. The Owls went on to hold off the Huskies, leaving them scoreless until the final minute as SMU junior Lauren Lessard scored from free position, followed by a Pelligrinelli score with 25 seconds left. With no time remaining to continue a comeback, the Owls took the victory by a score of 13-8, with Graf ending her day with a game high seven assists.
Nick Tocco can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org