October 22, 2014

Scrolling Headlines:

UMass women’s soccer controls its own destiny as conference tournament approaches -

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

UMass soccer deploys new formation with Keys, Jess -

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

UMass calling on young swimmers to continue strong start to the year -

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

WMU, Ohio, NIU pick up wins in busy MAC weekend -

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

A comprehensive guide to the Ebola virus -

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Trio of freshmen leading UMass hockey’s offense early in the season -

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

A guide to comic collecting in the Pioneer Valley -

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Letter: What’s behind the curtains on Birthright trips? -

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

FBI director’s fear-mongering view of data encryption is off the mark -

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

UMass Permaculture Initiative to add three new programs -

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Gov. Deval Patrick visits Amherst, awards $1.5 million grant for downtown development -

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

UHS offers more accessible vaccination clinics as flu season nears -

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Gamard: Is gluten really bad or just a fad? -

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Three new students appointed as SGA special assistants -

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Allymohamed scores game winner after suffering facial injury against Boston University -

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Loaded weekend against Marist, Keene State challenges UMass club hockey -

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

UMass football seeing improvement on both the offensive and defensive lines -

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Remembering Derek Jeter: an appraisal -

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Yellowcard switches things up on “Lift a Sail” -

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Campus Sustainability Day to take place Wednesday -

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Minutewomen players return home this weekend against Stony Brook

Going on the road tends to be a difficult task, no matter the sport or the team.

For the Massachusetts women’s lacrosse team though, it may present little trouble if UMass continues to focus on team advantages and play its style of game.

The Minutewomen (3-4) capped off their four-game home stretch with a 9-5 victory over Yale. In the game, UMass worked out the kinks and did things different than it had in its three straight losses at home. In the upcoming road trip, the Minutewomen will look to keep the momentum going with things that helped them attain their last victory.

“It’s going to be a challenge,” UMass coach Alexis Venechanos said. “We need to take it one game at a time.”

Away-field advantage

The Minutewomen will have a unique advantage heading into Long Island this weekend, an advantage that many other traveling teams might not have.

For Jackie Lyons, Dayna Defliese, Riley Perry, Nina Sarcona and Lauren Terracciano, it will be a homecoming this Saturday against Stony Brook, as all are returning home for the match against the Seawolves (1-4).

“We’ve got a lot of kids from Long Island, so I think they’re going to be excited to play against Stony Brook,” Venechanos said. “We’re expecting another top game.”

The last time that one of the Minutewomen players returned home was in the season opener when Merritt Cosgrove went back to San Diego to face Northwestern. Despite being home, Cosgrove’s efforts were not enough to earn the Maroon and White a victory.

Though Lyons and Connolly are the only players from Long Island to be returning, the roster includes another 14 players from the New York/New Jersey area.

Offensive possession

One of the keys to the game that the Minutewomen will be looking to continue after their match against the Bulldogs (1-3) is the offensive possession. Throughout the match against Yale, UMass was perfect on its clears, keeping the ball away from its opponent.

In the final nine minutes of the contest, the Minutewomen went on a four-goal run, keeping the ball on their side of the pitch.

UMass was also quite dominant on the draw control, beating Yale 11-to-5 in the category. Even after several draws for the Bulldogs, the Minutewomen stole the ball away to keep the possession.

In its first five games of the season, Stony Brook averaged just over seven goals a game, while UMass has averaged eight. The Minutewomen have not scored less than six goals since their first two contests against Northwestern and Holy Cross.

Gameplan

The last match against Yale featured a different UMass squad that followed the game-plan, which the Minutewomen will look to do again when they face Stony Brook.

“This is the first time we’ve followed the game-plan from top to bottom,” Venechanos said after the game. “Usually in the past, it’s one thing or the other. The attack kind of sealed it away with their finishes and we took the shots we wanted to take.”

One of the pieces to the game-plan came from attacker Jesse O’Donnell, who notched four goals (18 season total) in the match. Despite being on the road and being a target for her upcoming opponents, O’Donnell wants to do more of the same.

“I’m going to stick to the same game-plan and just keep working hard,” O’Donnell said.

Over the course of the season, Venechanos has praised the importance of the draw controls in her strategy. Throughout the opening games of their respective seasons, the Minutewomen have the advantage over the Seawolves in the category (85-61).

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

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