May 2, 2014

Albany Headed to Fourth Straight America East Championship

from press release

STONY BROOK, N.Y. -  The University at Albany women’s lacrosse team (14-2) punched its ticket to the America East final on Friday night with a 12-8 victory over Vermont (12-6). The Great Danes face Stony Brook in the final on Sunday at noon.

“Ultimately, we played well,” said head coach John Battaglino. “Overall the game was a little bit choppy and it was hard to get going but we came through. We know Stony Brook well and we’re looking forward to the game on Sunday.”

UAlbany got off to a quick start thanks to the defense. After losing the opening draw control, Nichole Eamer picked up a ground ball on a forced turnover by Erin Monna. Eamer went the distance to score and take the 1-0 lead. The junior picked up her own rebound after hitting the post to notch the opening goal of the game.

The Great Danes won two straight draws after Vermont evened the score at one. The Purple & Gold made the most of those possessions with unassisted goals from Maureen Keggins and Ariana Parker to take a 3-1 lead with 20 minutes left.

Vermont rode out UAlbany’s first man-up opportunity with 19 minutes left and headed down the field, but Monna forced a turnover to maintain the two-goal lead.

After Allie Phelan scored unassisted with 15 minutes left on a cut down the middle, Vermont called timeout to regroup.

With Vermont looking to swing the momentum out of the timeout, Monna forced another turnover off the Vermont draw win to regain possession.

The Catamounts continued to use long possessions in an attempt to tire out the UAlbany defense, but the Great Danes responded. Michelle Primomo knocked the ball away from Vermont to set up America East Co-Offensive Player of the Year Rachel Bowles for her first goal of the game.

Katherine Sweeney found the back of the cage from Bowles for a man-up goal with 7:22 left. The sophomore attack became the sixth unique player to score on the goal to make the score 6-1.

Vermont charged down the other end on the won draw, but a free position shot save from Berman continued to keep the Catamounts scoreless since the 21:23 mark. The Great Dane defense kept Vermont scoreless for 18 minutes in the first half before the Catamounts scored to make it 6-2.

The Purple & Gold made Vermont pay on its man-up opportunities, with Keggins scoring man-up to close the half and give UAlbany a 7-2 advantage at the break.

Sweeney scored twice to open the second half, and after Parker notched another unassisted goal, the senior opened up UAlbany’s biggest lead, 10-3 with 17 minutes left.

The Catamounts did not go quietly, tallying five of the game’s last seven goals. Dakotah Savitcheff scored twice to keep Vermont at bay down the stretch.

“All year we’ve had a lot of people score, and it’s been one of our strengths,” said Parker. “Even if we make mistakes we trust each other to hustle and get the ball back. We want to focus on us going into the game on Sunday and play to our potential.”

UAlbany meets Stony Brook in the America East Championship for the second-straight year on Sunday at noon.


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