Skyhawks seal NE10 record 12th regular season championship, top seed for next week’s NE10 Tournament
Hughes led the attack with six goals and an assist, playing a role in the Skyhawks last three goals to break a fourth quarter tie (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)
EASTON, Mass. (April 29, 2022) – Stonehill College, ranked No. 8 in this week’s USA Lacrosse Magazine Division II poll and No. 9 in the Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) Division II poll, sealed at least a share of its Northeast-10 Conference record 12th regular season championship and the top seed for next week’s NE10 Tournament with a 16-13 decision over Saint Anselm College, ranked No. 23 in the IWLCA poll, in NE10 women’s lacrosse action on Senior Day at Timothy J. Coughlin, ’80 Memorial Field at WB Mason Stadium this afternoon.
Stonehill closes out the regular season with eight-straight wins and a 7-1 record against nationally ranked teams. The Skyhawks clinch at least a share of its first NE10 regular season championship since 2009 and its Conference-record 12th title overall. Stonehill will be the top seed for next week’s NE10 Tournament, which will start with quarterfinal round action on Wednesday night against the No. 8-seed to be determined at 7 pm, after tomorrow’s final day of the NE10 schedule.
Prior to this afternoon’s game, Stonehill took a moment to honor its five seniors playing in their final regular season home game: Isabella Bourque, Julia D’Agostino, Lindsay Duggan, Kendall Fressle and Emma Sullivan.
Goals: Molly Mae Hughes 6, Kendall Fressle 3, Emma Sullivan 2, Victoria Butler 2, Lydia Rudden, Lilly Leach. Kayla Conway.
Assists: Kendall Fressle, Molly Mae Hughes, Lydia Rudden.
Goals: Jenna Balboni 4, Alison Ferullo 3, Lexi Palmisano 2, Ellie Richards 2, Isabella Stuzynski, Jess Sullivan.
Assists: Taylor Cobain 2, Liexi Palmisano, Annie Richards, Isabella Stuzynski.
Stonehill: Sarah Faley – 8 saves (60:00).
Saint Anselm: Grace Young – 13 saves (60:00).
Caused Turnovers: Four with 2, including Emma Sullivan.
Draw Controls: Lilly Leach 10.
Ground Balls: Mallory Crispens 5.
Caused Turnovers: McKenzie Robinson 3, Erin Doyle 3.
Draw Controls: Lexi Palmisano 6.
Ground Balls: Erin Doyle 5, Grace Young 5.
Fressle added three goals and an assist for the Skyhawks (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)
How it Happened
- Saint Anselm grabbed the early edge, taking a pair of one goal leads in the opening eight minutes of the game after sophomore Jess Sullivan scored the opener just 32-seconds in.
- Stonehill closed the first quarter with three-straight goals – the first two from sophomore Molly Mae Hugheswhile Fressle recorded a goal and assist as she capped the frame with a free-position goal with four seconds left after Hughes potted her second off a Fressle feed just 38-seconds earlier to give the Skyhawks their first lead of the day.
- Junior Victoria Butler stretched the Stonehill lead to three (5-2) just 36-seconds into the second quarter.
- Junior Lexi Palmisano ended the run for Saint Anselm momentarily with 10:02 to play in the second quarter, but Sullivan and Fressle struck with free-position goals 42-seconds apart to extend the Skyhawks lead to four (7-3) with nine minutes remaining.
- Stonehill’s lead wouldn’t get any higher than four goals the remainder of the game and Saint Anselm scored the final two goals of the first half to close within two (7-5) at the break and they cut the lead to a single goal after junior Ellie Richards scored the first goal of the second half.
- Stonehill responded with the next three goals, two on free-position shots, to reclaim its four-goal cushion (10-6) after Hughes’ third of the day with 7:55 left in the third.
- Saint Anselm scored four of the final five goals of the third quarter, including the final three to pull within a goal (11-10) after a free-position goal by sophomore Isabella Stuzynski with three seconds left.
- Trailing by a pair (13-11) after Butler’s second goal of the day for Stonehill, Saint Anselm got goals from senior Jenna Balboni and sophomore Alison Ferullo to knot the score (13-13) with 7:19 remaining.
- Stonehill would close the game out from there, however, with Hughes playing a role in three-straight Skyhawks goal, first assisting on junior Kayla Conway’s 43rd goal of the season with 4:48 to play that put Stonehill in front for good, and then adding her fifth and sixth goals of the day in the last 3:04 for insurance.
The teams combined for 72 fouls, including 23 in the third quarter alone as Stonehill was whistled for 15, and 12 free-position goals. Seven of the Skyhawks 16 goals came on free-position chances. Fressle scored two of her three goals on free-position shots, giving her 17 free-position goals for the season, matching the program’s single-season record set by Sam Lynott, ’11 in 2010.
- Hughes’ six goals are one shy of her career and season-best, adding an assist for a seven-point day. She has multiple goals and points in four-straight games, having scored multiple goals in 12 games this season overall.
- Butler’s two goals are her second multi-goal game of the season and fourth of her career.
- Sullivan finished with two goals, giving her multiple goals in five-straight games and 15 games this season overall. She also collected four draw controls, giving her 201 for her career – just the third to reach 200 draws in program history.
- Freshman Sarah Faley posted eight saves in the Stonehill goal, while senior Grace Young finished with 13 stops in the Saint Anselm goal.
- Rudden was held in check with a goal and assists, but was able to secure multiple points for the 16th-straight game.
- Rudden leads the NE10 with 63 assists this season – just three shy of Stonehill’s single-season record of 66 by Jenny McGrath ’06 in 2006. Rudden is also just two points shy of recording only the third 100-point season in program history and first since McGrath posted a program-record 110 points in 2006.
- Rudden has totaled 52 goals and 92 assists for 144 points in just 29 career games, ranking seventh in program history for career assists.
- Balboni led Saint Anselm with four goals and Ferullo scored three, while Palmisano recorded two goals and an assist and senior Taylor Cobain dished out two assists.
- Sophomore Lilly Leach collected a game-high ten draw controls, giving her double-digit draws for the second time this season.
- Stonehill has won 12 NE10 matches for the first time in program history, surpassing ten wins on six occasions.
- Stonehill has reached 14 wins for the first time since finishing 15-5 in 2015, having won 14 of 16 for the first time since opening the 2015 season with 13 wins over its first 14.
- Stonehill held at No. 2 in this week’s NCAA Division II East Region rankings released on Wednesday afternoon.
- Stonehill moved up five spots to No. 9 in this week’s IWLCA Division II poll and up three spots to No. 8 in the USA Lacrosse Magazine poll.
Stonehill (14-2, 11-1 NE10) now awaits its NE10 Tournament quarterfinal matchup based off the results from tomorrow’s final day of the NE10 slate. The Skyhawks will host the quarterfinal round game on Wednesday at 7 pm Saint Anselm (7-8, 5-7 NE10) is right back in action tomorrow, when it closes out its regular season schedule at The College of Saint Rose at 5 pm
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