Women’s lacrosse notebook: Strong first quarter lifts UMass over La Salle, 19-5

Kylee Bowen records her first hat trick of the season

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Dylan Nguyen/ Daily Collegian

By Sophie Weller, Collegian Staff

The Massachusetts women’s lacrosse team put on a dominating performance against La Salle on Thursday, winning 19-5. UMass (13-2, 7-0 Atlantic 10) showcased its offensive strength, with the Explorer’s (4-11, 2-5 A-10) unable to stop them and generate offensive opportunities of their own.

An unrelenting first quarter

Two minutes into the game, Maddy Moloney found the back of the net for the Minutewomen, opening the floodgates that would not stop for the remainder of the first quarter. The ball stayed in La Salle’s defensive end for a majority of the 15 minutes, with the trio of Haley Connaughton, Kelly Marra, and Moloney dominating play.

The Minutewomen are no strangers to quick starts, letting it carry them throughout their games. Despite losing the opening draw control, which is uncommon for UMass, it didn’t let that moment deter it, immediately regaining possession shortly after.

At the conclusion of the first quarter, the Minutewomen were up 9-2 over La Salle, the most goals scored in any frame during the game. Throughout the remaining 45 minutes, UMass would put up 10 more goals but at the end of the first quarter, Marra and Moloney were one goal away from a hat trick each. It wasn’t long before Marra successfully completed that feat.

Amy Moreau, Kylee Bowen’s efforts on full display

Amy Moreau is a player whose skills don’t always lead to numbers on the stat sheet, but is one who never stops running while on the field. She travels up and down the pitch, helping cause multiple turnovers and charging down the field, looking for open teammates. With less than a second remaining in the half, Moreau found the back of the net for her first goal of the day. She ended the game picking up one ground ball and causing a turnover along with the goal.

Like Moreau, Kylee Bowen has not been seen much on the stat sheet, but in today’s game she was one of two players to record a hat trick. This was her first three-goal game of the season, and the junior has 10 goals and one assist on the year. Finding the back of the net multiple times in Thursday’s contest, her offensive contributions continue to evolve and grow. With the post season looming, she can continue to contribute to the immense scoring depth present for UMass.

A slow day for the defense

Due to the high offensive production and efforts by the midfield in creating turnovers, the Minutewomen defenders did not face much pressure throughout the game. La Salle has been known to have low scoring contests.

On Thursday, La Salle’s first goal came with over five minutes remaining in the first quarter and was followed up by another with four seconds left. Both were scored by Kiki Venza. The Explorers would go on to get three more over the course of the next three quarters.

In goal, Gina Carroll assumed her usual starting spot, allowing three goals and making two saves. She was replaced by Bridgette Wall who ended with two saves and two goals allowed.

The Minutewomen have two games remaining in the regular season and will return home for a matchup against Saint Joseph’s at 12 p.m. on Saturday, before traveling and closing out the season at Davidson at 1 p.m. on Saturday, April 23.

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