After opening post-season play with a convincing home victory on Saturday, the Mount Ida women’s lacrosse team continues its quest for the 2018 Great Northeast Athletic Conference tournament title on Tuesday afternoon with a league semifinal round clash against rival Lasell at Grellier Field in Auburndale, Mass. beginning at 3:30 p.m. EDT.
The third-seeded Mustangs of Head Coach Nicole Poli improved to 12-4 on the season with a 19-8 quarterfinal round triumph over sixth-seeded Norwich over the weekend at Alumni Field, as junior midfielder Brooke Scahill (Gales Ferry, Conn./Ledyard) led the way with a dozen points (one off her school single-game record). Scahill, who earned her second GNAC Corvias Player of the Week honor of the season on Monday, netted seven goals and five assists in the quarterfinals, while fellow junior midfielder Alyssa Kelly (Lee, Mass./Lee) added a hat trick and four helpers to become the first player in program history to top the 300 career point plateau. Mount Ida also received a career-high six goal performance from senior attack Hayley Napier (Fairhaven, Mass./Greater New Bedford Voke) and collected a pair of free position conversions off the stick of sophomore Meghan Sargent (Brattleboro, Vt./Brattleboro Union).
Senior Eleanor Garvey (Elkridge, Md./Francis Scott Key), who was named as the GNAC Corvias Goalkeeper of the Week for the fourth time this spring, picked up her 12th win of the season with a 12-save effort in net for the Mustangs, who received a marker off the stick of freshman Jordyn Ringuette (Colchester, Conn./Colchester) and avenged a 14-11 setback suffered to the Cadets in regular season play. The victory was Mount Ida’s 26th in its last 35 outings dating back to the start of the 2017 season, as Poli’s crew advanced to the conference semifinal round for the second straight campaign and for the third time in program history.
Kelly, who ranks sixth nationally in Division III with 7.50 points per game, paces Mount Ida’s scoring parade with 78 goals and 42 assists for 120 points, as she leads the GNAC in goals and points and is tied for the assists lead with Scahill, who has added 62 goals for 104 points. Scahill joined Kelly as the only two players in school history to reach the 100 point mark in a season with her effort against Norwich.
Napier is next with 36 goals and 10 assists for 46 points, while Ringuette and senior captain Emily McConnell (Dracut, Mass./Greater Lowell Tech) have combined for 50 goals and 13 assists for 63 points to date. Sargent has been the Mustangs’ top defender with 50 ground balls and 26 caused turnovers while chipping with nine goals and an assist on the offensive side, and Garvey has been one of the top netminders in the region throughout the season for Poli, posting an 8.62 goals against average while ranking fifth nationally with a .584 saves percentage that includes a league-leading 194 stops.
Second-seeded Lasell, which enters Tuesday’s encounter with an overall record of 13-3 under Head Coach Caitlin Connolly, advanced to the semifinals with a 21-11 triumph over Simmons in last Saturday’s quarterfinals. The Lasers enter the contest having won eight straight matches dating back to their last setback on March 31st, a defeat that came at the hands of Mount Ida by a 15-10 final at Alumni Field behind a combined 18 point output (12 goals, six assists) from Kelly and Scahill that backed a 13-save effort in net from Garvey.
Senior midfielder Taylor Yandow tops Lasell’s scoring list with 65 goals (second in the league behind Kelly) and 16 assists for 81 points, while junior attack Vanessa Pino follows with 43 tallies and 35 helpers for 78 points. Sophomore goalkeeper Morgan Choquet has posted a 9.50 goals against average and made 109 saves while playing every minute of all 16 matches this spring for the Lasers.
Tuesday’s clash marks the first post-season meeting between Mount Ida and Lasell since 2013 (won by the Lasers at Grellier Field), and the March 31st Mustang triumph snapped Lasell’s eight game series winning streak that dated back to 2011. The winner of Tuesday’s semifinal advances to the 2018 GNAC championship match to face the winner of the other semifinal contest pitting top-seeded Johnson & Wales against fourth-seeded Regis, as the title tilt will be played on Saturday afternoon at the site of the highest remaining seed.
Live stats, video and directions links for Tuesday’s game at Lasell are available at www.mountidamustangs.com. For more information on the 2018 GNAC Women’s Lacrosse Championships, please visit www.thegnac.com.