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UMass women’s lacrosse earns No. 1 seed after beating Duquesne 25-12

Ashley Faulhaber (11) runs past George Washington defense during Friday afternoon’s game at Garber Field. (Katherine Mayo/Daily Collegian)

For the seventh consecutive season, the Massachusetts women’s lacrosse team ran the table against the rest of its Atlantic 10 opponents. After walloping Duquesne 25-12 Saturday in Pittsburgh, UMass (14-3, 9-0 A-10) clinched first place heading into the conference tournament, a distinction it’s held the past seven years.

“It’s great,” Minutewomen coach Angela McMahon said about securing their seventh straight unbeaten regular season. “The players are working really hard and the team really came together. It’s just a great group of kids.”

Junior Holly Turner guided UMass, scoring a team high seven points (four goals, three assists) in the route over the Dukes (2-15, 0-9 A-10). Senior Hannah Murphy led the team in goals netting five on the afternoon, and had another spectacular performance in the draw, corralling 16 draw controls.

Redshirt junior Hannah Burnett and freshman Kaitlyn Cerasi each potted a hat trick and two assists in the victory, and senior Callie Santos, junior Abby Walker, and redshirt sophomore Kiley Anderson each tallied two goals.

The Minutewomen went on a tear to start with a 7-1 run in the opening five and a half minutes. That lead stretched to 11-4 by the midway point of the half, and to 15-8 by the end of the first frame.

“Our ability to execute on draw controls was critical,” McMahon said about the offensive dominance. “Hannah Murphy and [senior] Sarah Crowley did a great job.”

Murphy and Crowley combined for 22 of UMass’ 26 total draw controls in the win.

The second half was a runaway for the Minutewomen who outscored Duquesne 10-4, closing out their perfect conference season once again in the route over the Dukes.

Turner’s seven point effort propelled her to the top of the UMass scoring list, finishing the season with 74 points (35 goals, 39 assists), and has quietly put together a career season for the Minutewomen.

“[Turner] did a great job,” McMahon said. “She’s always making plays and is really our connector. She’s looking to set-up teammates, and is an unselfish player who’s really grown and developed this season.”

Burnett finished the year with 54 goals, good for the most on UMass, Anderson was second in goals with 38, and Murphy and Santos scored 37 and 34 respectively.

Freshman Lauren Hiller started in the cage for the Minutewomen making 10 saves, and was relieved by junior Aileen Kelly who stopped a pair of Duquesne shots.

Murphy’s 16 draw controls moved her into fifth place on the all-time list with 481. She only needs 13 more to move into fourth place.

UMass outshot the Dukes 48 to 31.

The victory over last-place Duquesne was the Minutewomen’s final tune-up before the playoffs and McMahon said they used this game to clean up some things prior to the postseason commencing.

Senior Allison Ryan added her first marker of the season with Crowley, sophomore Cassidy Doster and junior Ashley Faulhaber scoring the other goals for UMass.

The Minutewomen clinch a bye in the A-10 tournament as the first seed and will play the winner of No. 4 George Mason and No. 5 Davidson Friday at 1:00 p.m.

Ryan Ames can be reached at rames@umass.edu.

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