Massachusetts Daily Collegian

UMass women’s lacrosse cruises past New Hampshire in 16-4 win

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(Katherine Mayo/Daily Collegian)

A clear, sunny day along with a mild 59-degree temperature set the perfect mid-February backdrop at Garber Field for Massachusetts women’s lacrosse team’s 16-4 win over New Hampshire Saturday.

The game was largely defined by UMass’ (2-0) ability to create and take advantage of far more opportunities than UNH (1-1) as the Minutewomen out-shot the Wildcats 37-12.

“Taking a lot of shots and pushing the fast break offense was huge for us today,” UMass coach Angela McMahon said after the game. “There’s definitely room to improve though, I think we need to capitalize more on those scoring chances.

UNH managed to open the game with midfielder Carly Wooters scoring the first goal one minute, 56 second into the contest. However, that would be the first of only three goals and eight shots the Wildcats would muster for the remainder of the half.

Attacker Erika Eipp quickly answered with a goal less than a minute later that would start a four-goal run over the next 5:18 to give the Minutewomen a 4-1 lead.

“Both the fast break and the slow break was what we wanted to focus on, and really controlling the pace of the game,” Eipp said.

Eipp would continue her strong attack as she finished the game with seven points (three goals, four assists) leading UMass. Fellow attacker Nicole Troost followed with four goals and one assist of her own.

Following a goal by Troost with 15:55 to go in the first half putting the Minutewomen ahead 7-2, it became clear that UNH could not penetrate their defense led by seniors Anne and Kate Farnham.

“The goal was team defense, and I thought every single person on defense stepped up today,” McMahon said, “ We knew coming in that they had some top scorers on their team after their win at Hofstra, so we wanted to be aggressive especially on the defensive side.

“We just focused on our communication, and it’s really a team defense. We can’t do it without each other and the goalies,” Anne Farnham said.

With the score holding at 7-2, both teams struggled to mount any consistent attack as a series of fouls and turnovers ensued. The half finished with 23 combined turnovers and 31 fouls.

By the end of the first half UMass had out-shot the Wildcats 20-8, and goalkeeper Sam Walters stood strong for the Minutewomen stopping both free-position shot attempts.

Eipp closed the first half with a free position goal with 1:52 left as the Minutewomen took an 8-3 lead into halftime.

The second half kicked off even stronger for UMass as Nicole Troost, Holly Turner and Callie Santos each scored a series of back-to-back goals and the Minutewomen rolled to a 15-4 lead in the first ten minutes.

UMass also cleaned up in terms of possession, as it managed to cut the number of turnovers in half (10 in the first, five in the second).

The final nail in the coffin was sophomore transfer Bella O’Connor scoring her first goal as a Minutewomen with 3:59 left.

Eipp added an additional three assists as UMass outscored UNH 8-1 in the second half.

“We know what kind of defense they were coming in with today,” Eipp said. “We just worked through our plays and I know where everyone on offense is going to be which made our attack very effective.

The Mintuewomen will look to keep momentum going as they host Boston University at Garber Field on Wednesday at 3:00 p.m.

Nick Souza can be reached at [email protected]

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