A dominating performance by the Massachusetts women’s lacrosse team led to a 18-4 victory over St. Bonaventure at Garber Field on Friday afternoon.
Despite facing St. Bonaventure’s Morgan Conroy, who ranks top five in the Atlantic 10 in save percentage, the Minutewomen (8-3, 3-0 A-10) were able to strike early with a goal by Cassidy Doster three minutes into the first half.
The Minutewomen would go on to score eight unanswered goals within the first fifteen minutes of play, reminiscent of last week’s performance over Davidson.
The Bonnies (0-11, 0-3 A-10) got on the board at 16:50 with a goal by top scorer, Rylee Arnold, but the Bonnies would only tally one more goal in the first half.
“We took our time and we finished our shots, they had success. When they rushed shots, that quick high-to-high shot, she was right there, ready to make that save,” UMass coach Angela McMahon said. “So I think that’s definitely a learning component for us, making sure we’re disciplined in our shooting and knowing what a goalie’s strengths and weaknesses are. I think overall we did pretty well on that.”
A large part of the team’s success was due to their draw control.
“We really dominated the possession,” McMahon said. “Kiley and Caitlyn Petro both did a great job on the draws. So definitely that going in our favor, 18-6 and the caused turnovers on the ride-allowed us to play off of that and we got some good looks on cage.”
Kiley Anderson, who recently recorded the second most draw controls won in a single game in program history with sixteen vs. Saint Joseph’s, gave credit to her teammates for helping her reach such a feat.
“I wouldn’t have been able to do it without the people on the circle,” Anderson said. “Jana Drummond, who is our draw coach, and she does a really good job with us every single day to prepare us. That was great, but the credit really goes to my teammates and my coaches.”
She continued her dominating draw control performances with her play in the game against St. Bonaventure. She won nine draw controls in the game and scored a hat trick.
“In this game, we knew that draw controls could be a really big focus for us in an area where we could really succeed. As a draw team, we really keyed in on that. I was able to really get the ball on my stick and change the point of attack in that way,” said Anderson, “Draw controls, especially nowadays, are everything. If you have the ball, you get the draw, you can score. Because you can’t score if you don’t have the ball. I think getting the draw is a big momentum for our attack and if we get the draw, we need to score and we do score.”
McMahon expressed how so many factors go into having a successful possession.
“It’s the drawtaker and everyone who’s around the circle doing their jobs, whether it’s to come up with the ball or seal their player off, and really battle and fight for every single ball,” McMahon said. “I think the amount of possessions that we had clearly gave us a lot of offensive opportunities so we want to keep that sort of possession game in our favor going forward.”
Captain Hannah Burnett tallied three goals before leaving the game with an injury. Massachusetts led 11-2 going into the second half and the team began to transition. Sam Walters started the second half, giving Lauren Hiller a break after Hiller had a dominating performance allowing only two goals. In the second half, McMahon put in younger players, who also kept up the momentum and the goal scoring of the first half.
The Minutewomen were able to put up another seven goals en route to the 18-4 victory. Freshman Drew Reno recorded the first goal of her career with an assist from Doster.
“Glad to see a lot of people get on the board, get time, have success, make mistakes, it’s all about our growth,” McMahon said. “This is probably one of the biggest teams we’ve ever had my entire career here, so it really bodes well that we were able to get a lot of kids time out there to develop them and build confidence and get that experience.”
The Minutewomen will host La Salle, Sunday at 12 p.m.
Emilia Beuger can be reached at [email protected] and can be followed on Twitter @ebeuger.