Merrimack Women Clinch NE-10 Playoff Berth
from press release
RINDGE, N.H. – The No. 12 Merrimack women's lacrosse team clinched a playoff berth on Tuesday night as they defeated the Franklin Pierce Ravens by the score of 14-9. With the win, Merrimack finishes the regular season with a 7-8 overall record and a 7-5 conference mark, earning the sixth seed for the Northeast-10 Conference playoffs.
"The girls really responded in the second half after a weak first half," said head coach Corinne Baker. "We played a game of possession and adjusted well to the physical draw game of the Ravens."
Mary Pasquantonio (Plainville, Mass.) led the Warriors once again with four goals on five shots. Olivia Huie (Norwell, Mass.) finished off her impressive game with three goals while leading scorer Colleen Strachan (Bedford, Mass.) recorded two goals and a assist, giving her 62 total points on the season.
Pasquantonio opened up the scoring for the warriors with a tally at the 10 second mark of the first half. Franklin Pierce responded with two straight goals to make the score 2-1 with 21:07 remaining in the opening half.
Giulia Palombo (Sandwich, Mass.) tied the game at two under two minutes later after a nice pass from Alicia Tinsley (Shrewsbury, Mass.). Over the final 19 minutes of the half the two teams would alternate goals as Huie connected on the final goal of the half with 39 seconds showing on the clock to entewr halftime deadlocked at seven.
The Warriors held a 21-14 advantage in shots for the opening half and were successful on 9-10 clearing attempts. Merrimack held the 11-4 lead in draw controls and caused seven Franklin Pierce turnovers.
The Ravens opened up the second half with a tally less than 30 seconds in to take the 8-7 lead. The warriors responded with a 4-0 scoring run as Jenn Pino (North Andover, Mass.)opened up the run with her 23rd goal. Strachan, Sarah Salatto (Guilford, CT) and Huie added the other three goals for the Warriors.
With 13:22 remaining in the half, Franklin Pierce's Courtney Weber found the Back of the net for her 37th tally, making the score 11-9 in favor of the Warriors.
However the Warriors responded with a 3-0 scoring run to end the game as Pasquantonio, Pino and Strachan found the back of the net to give Merrimack the 14-9 victory.
For the game, Merrimack held the 34-22 advantage in shots and were nearly perfect on clearing attempts going 16-18. The Warriors went 2-11 on free position attempts and forced 17 Raven turnovers for the contest.
Salatto continued her strong defensive play forcing a game-high four turnovers, four groundballs and three draw controls. Pino racked up two goals and one assist while Tinsley closed out her game with one goal and one assist off the bench. Sam Kiesel (Andover, Mass.) picked up her fifth win of the season, making seven saves.
Merrimack will open up the Northeast-10 Conference playoffs traveling to play #3 seeded Stonehill on Wednesday May 2.