Scrolling Headlines:

: Nineteen turnovers sink UMass men’s basketball in loss to Fordham Saturday -

January 21, 2017

UMass men’s basketball falls to Fordham behind strong defensive effort by the Rams -

January 21, 2017

UMass hockey can’t take advantage of strong start in 6-1 loss to Boston College -

January 21, 2017

High-powered Eagles soar past UMass -

January 21, 2017

UMass women’s basketball suffers disappointing loss to St. Bonaventure at Mullins Center Thursday -

January 19, 2017

REPORT: Tom Masella out as defensive coordinator for UMass football -

January 19, 2017

Zach Lewis, bench carry UMass men’s basketball in win over St. Joe’s -

January 19, 2017

UMass women’s basketball handles Duquesne at home -

January 16, 2017

UMass men’s basketball’s late comeback falls short after blowing 15-point first-half lead -

January 15, 2017

UMass hockey outlasted at home against No. 6 UMass Lowell -

January 14, 2017

Hailey Leidel hits second buzzer beater of the season to give UMass women’s basketball win over Davidson -

January 13, 2017

UMass football hosts Maine at Fenway Park in 2017 -

January 12, 2017

UMass men’s basketball snaps losing streak and upsets Dayton Wednesday night at Mullins Center -

January 11, 2017

UMass women’s track and field takes second at Dartmouth Relays -

January 10, 2017

UMass hockey falls to No. 5 Boston University at Frozen Fenway -

January 8, 2017

UMass professor to make third appearance on ‘Jeopardy!’ -

January 8, 2017

UMass women’s basketball suffers brutal loss on road against Saint Joseph’s -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops thirds straight, falls to VCU 81-64 -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops tightly-contested conference matchup against George Mason Wednesday night -

January 4, 2017

Late-game defense preserves UMass women’s basketball’s win against rival Rhode Island -

January 4, 2017

Minutewomen open up four-game home stand

The Massachusetts women’s lacrosse team has its second chance of the season at a nationally-ranked opponent this afternoon, when it takes on Boston University.

“They have the experience,” UMass coach Alexis Venechanos said. “I told my players today that they’ve been playing together for four years. They bring back that experience. I’m really looking forward to seeing how we matchup and do against them.”

Just like the other opponents UMass (2-1) has competed against this season, the No. 10 Terriers will open their schedule at McGurik stadium.

“I think we’re learning a lot about our team these last three games, and I think we’re using that to our advantage,” Venechanos said. “We’re learning when to dodge, when to be a feeder and also how to do a little bit of both. I think we bring that experience into the game, and knowing each other a little better and being able to adjust to what defenses are doing to us.”

BU is the third straight opponent to open its schedule against the Minutewomen, with Holy Cross, Connecticut and Northwestern all beginning the 2010 season against UMass.

“I think we were, offensively, a lot more dynamic on Saturday [against UConn] with a lot more assisted goals,” Venechanos said. “On the defensive side of the ball, we’ve seen a lot of styles of play. We’ve seen with fast dodgers, feeders and a team that likes to slow it down.”

The Minutewomen are 12-6 all-time against BU, with the Terriers winning six of the last seven matches between the two teams. The dominance dates back to March of 1999 when BU was victorious over UMass.

“We’re very familiar with them as a team and they bring back a lot of experience,” Venechanos said. “They’ve had a lot of team players that in the past were dangerous, and defensively they have a solid core.”

The two teams met last year on the Terrier’s turf at Nickerson Field, which hosted a 15-5 rout by BU. The match between the two sides was the third of UMass’ season, and was the last of a three-game losing streak that plagued its early schedule. Coincidentally, it was also the Terriers’ first game of the 2009 season.

In the beginning of the contest, both teams kept the game close, leading to a 5-3 halftime score. The second half of the game showed a dominant run by then-No. 10 BU. After play resumed in the second half, the Terriers had a pair of four-goal runs to close out the game and continue the Minutewomen losing streak.

Notably in last year’s game, goalkeeper Katie Florence had 12 saves in the contest. Attacker Jackie Lyons also played well, scoring a pair of goals for the Maroon and White.

BU attacker Xan Weitzel, who had six points in the 2009 game (three goals, three assists), makes her way back to McGurik for today’s battle. Weitzel finished eighth in the nation in assists (39) and third in Terrier’s single season history.

Both the Terriers and the Minutewomen are favorites to repeat as champions of their respective conferences (American East and Atlantic, respectively).

“As a team I think we’ve been getting a lot better and I think going into this game, we know that BU has been the top team in New England the past few years,” Venechanos said. “Our goal is to execute our game plan to the best of our ability.”

Today’s contest will be the first of a four-game home stretch for UMass, which includes games against Harvard, New Hampshire and Yale.

“We’re just taking it one game at a time,” Venechanos said. “We have a lot of games, a quick turn-around, so we’re excited about [today]. We’re hoping to get out there, and we’re just very excited.”

Herb Scribner can be reached at hscribne@student.umass.edu.

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