Minutewomen onto the Atlantic 10 semifinals after a perfect A-10 season

UMass comes out on top with a 12th consecutive win

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Nina Walat/Daily Collegian

By Olivia Sault, Collegian Staff

The No. 24 Massachusetts women’s lacrosse team defeated Saint Joseph’s 18-13 on Sunday afternoon in Philadelphia, Pa.

The Hawks (9-6, 6-2 Atlantic 10) were a challenging opponent for the Minutewomen (13-2, 8-0 Atlantic 10), but UMass came out on top for its 12th straight win. The Minutewomen utilized their unstoppable offensive line, leaving Sunday’s game holding a perfect record in the A-10 conference.

“Focusing on details of how we play and controlling the controllable,” UMass coach Angela McMahon said of the perfect record. “Playing together as a team, and the girls love being around one another which creates the atmosphere for us to work together and in sync when on the field.”

The entirety of the game begins with successful draw controls and the Minutewomen are now fifth in the country for draw controls. The team has a season-total of 290 draw controls, securing a substantial 20 in the game against the Hawks alone. Senior draw specialist Caitlyn Petro leads the Minutewomen in draw controls with 200 on the season, securing 20 against the Hawks after a career-high of 24 in Friday’s game.

“She is the best in the country at what she does,” McMahon said of Petro. “Her teammates are also always behind her, doing a really good job at securing the ball and turning them into successful offensive runs.”

Senior Haley Connaughton and graduate student Stephanie Croke both dominated the field in Sunday’s game. Opening the game, Croke put a goal on the board with an assist by Connaughton. Connaughton added another assist paired with five goals, Croke with a total of three goals. Not only does UMass lead in draw controls, but it is also the second-best scoring offense in the nation. The Minutewomen have been able to fine tune and adjust their offense with ease each game.

Both attacks, Maddy Moloney and Kaitlyn Cerasi, were huge leaders for UMass. Cerasi had three goals paired with one assist and Moloney with three goals paired with two ground balls.

The Minutewomen are in crunch time for preparation for this Friday’s game, the Atlantic 10 Semifinals. The opponent is to be determined, but the team will continue to work on fundamentals and work with one another to create the best offensive and defensive line they can.

“We have to continue doing what we are doing and honing in on the little things,” McMahon said postgame. “The season is on the line, and we have to prove ourselves in Friday’s game and practice, practice, practice.”

Olivia Sault can be reached at [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter @Olivia_Sault.