Massachusetts Daily Collegian

UMass women’s lacrosse opens A-10 play with 15-5 win over Saint Joseph’s

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(Judith Gibson-Okunieff/DailyCollegian)

The Massachusetts women’s lacrosse team took its first step toward an eighth straight Atlantic 10 title with a 15-5 victory over Saint Joseph’s Friday afternoon.

The Minutewomen (8-1, 1-0 A-10) began conference play on the road in Philadelphia looking for a hot start against the Hawks (1-8, 0-1 A-10). Goal achieved.

“I thought we did a good job getting off to a good start and applying a lot of pressure on their offense while also generating a lot of shots as well,” UMass coach Angela McMahon said.

The scoring opened up the score less than three minutes into the game when midfielder Hannah Murphy scored the opening goal two minutes, 57 seconds into the first half. Murphy would go on to have two in the game along with a game-high seven draw controls.

St. Joe’s quickly responded with a goal just eight seconds later, but the Hawks struggled to keep pace.

UMass would then go on a run scoring six of the next eight goals, with senior attacker Nicole Troost accounting for four of the six; the other two scored by Eipp. Troost would go on to finish with five in the game bringing her season total to 28.

“We have so many weapons on offense that in makes it difficult for other teams to focus on any one particular player,” McMahon said.

Troost capped off a strong first half with her fourth goal with just four seconds remaining. The Minutewomen took a 7-3 lead into halftime following the dominating start.

The second half opened just as the first did with Murphy’s second goal just 1:32 in making it 8-3. The Minutewomen continued to put their foot on the gas with a 6-1 run to open the second half, putting comfortable distance between them and the Hawks at 13-4.

Eipp continued to be a facilitator on offense picking up two of her three assists on the day in the second half. In total, UMass had only five assists with the other too coming from Murphy and defender Kate Farnham.

A goal by sophomore attacker Ashley Faulhaber with just 18 seconds left in regulation put the stamp on a 15-5 victory for UMass in a game in which they never trailed.

The Minutewomen defense was a major part of why St. Joe’s struggled to produce any offense in order to keep pace in the game. The Hawks only managed 17 shots compared to UMass’ 29, but struggled with ball controlling finishing with 24 turnovers.

“We did a great job maintaining a high pressure and high intensity defense, It’s tiring, but it’s also high-risk high-reward,” McMahon said.

While this was a strong showing for the Minutewomen, McMahon still recognizes there is room to grow. They 16 turnovers and 37 fouls for UMass is still a point of concern.

“We’re still a work in progress. On the whole we had a good game, but we’re capable of better,” McMahon said. “But we’re midway through the season, and we want to still be a work in progress at this point”.

UMass will look to take the next step in their progress on Sunday when it takes on Duquesne at Garber field. The opening draw is set for

Nicholas Souza can be reached at [email protected]

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