Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Women’s lacrosse notebook: UMass picks up fifth straight win against Duquesne

Seven players recorded two goals in the Minutewomen’s 21-9 win
Maya Geer / Daily Collegian

The Massachusetts women’s lacrosse team picked up its fifth consecutive win on Sunday, 21-9 on the road against Duquesne. The Minutewomen (8-2, 2-0 Atlantic 10) did not let the snowy weather deter them from dominating play.

A display of teamwork

The communication rang through the field, with UMass consistently talking in the offensive zone. Once the Minutewomen had the ball in the offensive zone, the ball movement began, with them looking for the perfect shot rather than risking a loss of possession.

Many of the shots were set up by Alex Finn who sat stationed behind the net or along the goal line. In the first period, Muscella saw an opening and cut to the crease where Finn threw the ball over the goal and into her stick. Muscella tucked the ball away with a simple flick of her wrist. Finn followed that play up with a goal of her own at the end of the period after Maddy Moloney earned a free position shot. Instead of taking it herself, Moloney found Finn on the crease who faked a shot low before releasing high for the finish.

Like many of the other high-scoring matchups this season, 14 Minutewomen found the back of the net, with seven players having a multi-score game. Charlotte Wilmoth is coming off a six-goal game on Friday and ended Sunday’s game with two more, including one where she jumped high in the air and took a shot over the heads of the Dukes (3-5, 0-1 A-10) defenders and goaltender.

Duquesne refusing to go down easily

Going into halftime, the Dukes were down by 10, but emerged for the remaining 30 minutes, determined to erase part of the deficit. Alana Piano won the first draw control and 21 seconds later Delaney Rodriguez-Shaw found the back of the net. Tina St. Clair provided a much needed spark for Duquesne, scoring three goals in the third period, finishing the game with five. Her fourth goal of the day came after Connaughton was issued a green card and she immediately capitalized.

Prior to the matchup, Duquesne’s Mackenzie Leszczynski was the player to look out for after winning A-10 defensive player of the week. However, the freshman remained quiet, ending with only two draw controls and one caused turnover. Before being taken out in the fourth quarter, Mady Piersielak had eight saves and was a primary reason why UMass’ score didn’t grow higher.

The Dukes never gave up, continuing to play and create opportunities until the final minutes, but the strong offensive prowess from UMass was too much to overcome.

An Unusual Start

The Minutewomen are known for starting games hot, getting shots off and balls in the back of the net in a hurry. Per usual, UMass netted the first goal of the game courtesy of Haley Connaughton. However, Duquesne quickly answered after Tina St. Clair caught Gina Carroll far outside of position and fired a shot from beyond the 12-meter fan. The Minutewomen and Dukes traded goals one more time in the first frame, keeping Duquesne within reach on the scoreboard in the opening minutes.

The Minutewomen are used to controlling play from the first draw and getting out to a sizeable lead, but here they were slow to get the offensive momentum in the first seven minutes. However, for the remaining seven minutes, it was all UMass, with seven different goal scorers finding the back of the net in the first quarter.

The Minutewomen will return to Amherst for a four-game home stand starting on Friday at 1 p.m. against Virginia Commonwealth.

Sophie Weller can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @SophieeWellerr.

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