March 15, 2009

Rawlick Nets School Record in Navy Win

from press release

NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. - Behind a program-best 11-point performance from junior Erin Rawlick (Forest Hill, Md.), the Navy women's lacrosse team (5-1) found the back of the cage early and often in cruising past Niagara (3-3), 17-5, on Sunday afternoon.

Coming off an emotional, late-game triumph on Friday at Canisius, one of the MAAC's top squads, Navy put together a strong, all-around effort in recording its third-straight win (second-straight on the road) and fifth in its first six games to begin the spring.

"I was proud of the way the girls played today," said Navy head coach Cindy Timchal. "We came out strong and unlike what we saw in the second half against Canisius, we really maintained our intensity from start-to-finish. We had a quick turnaround, but I thought we carried in a lot of momentum from Friday's exciting finish - which helped a great deal."

Rawlick keyed yet another quick start for the Navy women, breaking her own school record and recording the third-highest single-game point total in the country this season with five goals and a career-best six assists.

She dealt out assists on each of the team's first five tallies, connecting with classmate Mary Ruttum (Annapolis, Md.) three times during the spurt (four times on the game), as the Mids jumped all over the host Purple Eagles with a game-opening 7-1 run.

"Erin and Mary really had it going today," added Timchal. "When they get started up front, they can be hard to stop. Niagara used a face-guarder on Erin the entire afternoon, so it was especially nice to see her continue to make plays in spite of all the attention opposing defenses are giving to her."

Navy would extend the lead to 9-2 after a dominant first 30 minutes after a pair of solo runs from Rawlick resulted in goals during the period's closing minutes.

Ruttum scored four times in the half and tied a career-best total with her fifth marker just 2:18 into the second, as Navy's standout junior tandem quickly reprised its 1-2 scoring punch.

Only 15 ticks came off the clock before Rawlick completed her second hat trick in as many days (and 20th of her career) with the first of back-to-back scores at the 27:27 mark. She would later add a fifth tally to cap a 6-1 spurt that extended Navy's advantage to 15-3 with 13 minutes left in regulation. The two teams would trade goals inside the closing 10 minutes to settle on the final margin.

Navy held a commanding 41-14 advantage in shots, committed only 11 turnovers to the host's 24 and won 14-of-23 draws, including 9-of-12 in the decisive first half.

Individually, the Mids once again received strong all-around efforts from a number of underclassmen, including sophomores Katrina Nietsch (New Canaan, Conn.) and Caitlin Mandrin Hill (Annapolis, Md.), as well as the freshmen trio of Madison Bell (Baltimore, Md.), Kierstin King (Hereford, Md.) and Dani Vivonetto (Rocky Point, Md.).

Nietsch registered two goals, an assist and had three ground balls, while Mandrin Hill, who racked up nine points (4 g, 5 a) on the weekend, scored twice and finished with three caused turnovers.

Meanwhile, Bell was once again strong in all facets of the game with one goal (her 10th of the year), a game-high four ground balls and finishing tied for the team-lead with draw controls (3) and caused turnovers (3).

King scored in her sixth consecutive game to begin her collegiate career, while Vivonetto wrapped up a successful weekend with her second goal in as many days - after missing the two previous games due to injury.

"We're very excited to come out of the weekend and our longest road trip of the season with two wins," said Timchal. "I think we have learned a lot about our team over the last two weeks and I expect we will bring a lot of energy into our first conference road test next weekend."

Navy, the victor in four of its last five contests outside Annapolis, concludes its season-long road stretch on Saturday in Worcester, Mass against Holy Cross. The Crusaders (2-5) dropped their league opener to preseason favorite Colgate (19-9) on Saturday afternoon.

Notes: Navy improved to 2-0 all-time against Niagara and 4-0 all-time against MAAC opponents ... the Mids won a 21-5 decision against the Purple Eagles last spring in Annapolis (3/1/08) ... Navy has held four of its six opponents to six or fewer goals (allowing 7.67 this season) ... Rawlick has now scored a goal in 23 consecutive games ... she ran her team-leading point total to 40 (16 g, 24 a), with 16 pts. in two games on the weekend ... in six games, she has already matched her 2008 assist total (24) ... Rawlick held the previous Navy single-game scoring record with 10 points (5 g, 5 a), which she set in a season-opening win against Presbyterian ... she previously handed out five assists in wins over Presbyterian and Lafayette ... Ruttum equaled her career-high in goals, posting a five-spot on the Purple Eagles for the second time in as many years ... she is tied for the team lead in goals (16) and is tied for the second-most points with 23.

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