BRIDGEWATER, Mass. – Massachusetts Maritime Academy hung tough against a physical Bridgewater State University women's lacrosse team, but ultimately ran out of both gas and opportunities in a 16-6 MASCAC loss. Rookie Anna Deely scored four points and Stephanie Hunt dished off four assists on a cold and windy night.
The Bears scored the first two goals of the game within 1:56 of the first whistle, but as so often has occurred this season, Stephanie Hunt found Anna Deely just over two minutes later to get Maritime on the board.
However, the hosts struck back immediately, turning the ensuing draw control into a goal by Elizabeth Ettridge, the leading goal-scorer in the conference.
A series of turnovers set up a BSU possession in Maritime's half and, after, a foul, Gabby Reinold capitalized on a free possession shot to make the score 4-1. Once more, however, the Buccaneers would strike back. Deely won the subsequent draw control and got the ball to Hunt, who this time found Meghan Petruzziello to reduce the deficit to two.
The next two goals were split in the same way, with Bridgewater scoring off a turnover and Maritime taking advantage of a BSU green card. The resulting free possession shot was converted by Cammi Balentine, assisted by Deely.
The next 10 minutes, however, were all Bears as they ran the score to 7-3. After recovering an errant Bridgewater shot, MMA cleared the ball into their offensive end and Casey Sullivan fed fellow rookie Deely a pass that allowed her to beat the keeper under heavy pressure in front of goal.
The Bears took away any chance of a momentum swing by scoring on a free possession shot by Ettridge, assisted by Victoria McDonough, tied for the MASCAC led in assists. By the break, Bridgewater led 9-4. Ettridge netted three goals over the first 30 minutes, while Reinold notched a pair. McDonough assisted on seven of the Bears' first nine goals.
The two teams were held scoreless for the first 15 minutes of the second stanza as one turnover followed another. The Bears finally broke the second-half ice on an Emily Hiller tally with 14:36 remaining. The goal sparked a 4-0 BSU run as the hosts opened up a 13-4 lead with 11:21 left to play.
A groundball pickup by Sullivan at 10:07, who has gained confidence on loose balls the last two games, started downfield movement for Maritime. Almost a minute later, the attack was successful, as wiry midfielder Gina Connor slotted into the D and fired a pass from Hunt into the back of the net.
However, the successive draw was immediately sent downfield and, yet again, it was McDonough to Ettridge. Two more strikes for Bridgewater followed and the score read 15-5 with 7:37 left.
A series of Maritime shots concluded with a laser from Deely, sent her way by Hunt, but the consolation goal was erased by a fourth goal of the day from Reinold.
Sophomore McDonough tied a ten-year old BSU record with ten assists, while Ettridge joined Reinold with four markers. The Bears out-shot MMA 34-15 and took advantage of nine free possession attempts, converting on four.
For the first time since early in the season, Maritime was significantly in the deficit on draw controls, winning only 5-of-20. The Bucs also won only 20 groundballs to the hosts' 24. Though the final count on fouls was similar at 32-27, the young MMA squad did not take advantage of 17 Bridgewater first quarter fouls and ran out of steam in the second.
BSU sophomore Hayley Barner made 11 saves to record her ninth win of the season between the pipes. Senior midfielder Haley Riley led all players with four caused turnovers, while McDonough forced three turnovers to go along with three draws and a team-best five ground balls.
Deely (Marston Mills, Mass.) paced Mass. Maritime with three goals and an assist, while senior attack Stephanie Hunt (Brookfield, Conn.) dished out four assists. Deely added five groundballs and caused three turnovers, while Sullivan (Sagamore Beach, Mass.) picked up four grounders and turned the ball over just once. Senior netminder Mikayla Correia (Dartmouth, Mass.) turned aside 13 shots in the setback for the Buccaneers.
The MASCAC schedule continues for both teams on Friday evening. The Bears (9-5, 3-1 MASCAC) travel to Fitchburg State University for a five o'clock game with the Falcons, while the Buccaneers (5-7, 0-4) entertain the Trailblazers of MCLA at six. The Senior Night contest will honor Hunt and Correia as they depart and fans are welcome to Clean Harbors Stadium for the event.
Gabriel Fidler, Sports Information Associate, with copy from Michael Holbrook, Bridgewater State