February 18, 2011

Catamounts Open Season at UMass

from press release

BURLINGTON, Vt. - The University of Vermont women's lacrosse team opens the 2011 season traveling to Massachusetts for a 1 p.m. game at McGuirk Stadium in Amherst, Mass. Live stats and video are available at UMassAthletics.com.

UMass stands at 1-0 on the year after opening the season with a12-10 overtime win at Holy Cross on Wednesday. Saturday's game marks the season opener for the Catamounts.

UMass, the two-time defending Atlantic-10 Champions, were picked to win the Atlantic-10 Conference for the third time in the league's preseason poll. The Minutewomen return 17 letterwinners and 10 starters from last year's team that went 10-10 overall and 5-2 in league play. Among the returning veterans are six of the top seven scoring leaders from last season, including reigning A-10 Offensive Player of the Year and 2010 All-American Jackie Lyons. She tallied 69 points on 49 goals and 20 assists in 2010.

In the season opener versus Holy Cross, Lyons scored the game-winning goal with 2.7 seconds left in the first overtime. Danielle Pelletier and Haley Smith each recorded a hat trick and Katie Florence made 15 saves in the UMass net.

Head coach Angela McMahon is in her first season at the helm of the Minutewomen. She spent the previous two years as head coach at Connecticut.

UMass owns a 10-2 advantage in the all-time series with Vermont that dates back to 1990. The Minutewomen have won nine straight over the Catamounts. UVM's last win against Massachusetts was May 7, 2004, a 14-4 victory in Amherst. The two teams are meeting for the first time since Feb. 28 2007.

Vermont was picked to finish fifth in the America East Preseason Coaches Poll. The Catamonts went 4-11 overall last season and posted a 1-5 mark in league play. In 2011, UVM returns 64 percent of its scoring and 16 letterwinners, including its top two scorers in midfielders Megan MacDonald (23g, 13a – 36 pts) and Samantha Stern (28g, 6a – 34 pts). MacDonald, the 2008 America East Rookie of the Year, earned second team all-conference honors last season.

The Catamounts also return 2009 America East Rookie of the Year Allison Pfohl on attack. Last season Pfohl tallied 16 points and 14 goals in 15 games.

On defense, junior Caitie Izzo will be the anchor for the Catamounts. An America East All-Conference First Team selection last season, she ranked ninth in the country in caused turnovers (31) and was among the team leaders in ground balls (37).

Freshman Karli Mackendrick has been named to the Canadian U19 National Women's Lacrosse Team. Mackendrick is part of the final 18-player roster that will represent Canada at the 2011 Federation of International Lacrosse (FIL) U19 World Championships in Hannover, Germany from August 3-13.

Mackendrick, a defender, went through an 18-month selection process that began in Peterborough, Ontario and Langley, British Columbia at the national identification camps. Over the last few months the players competed in games against OUA and NCAA schools and participated in a final Christmas training camp.

Mackendrick came to Vermont from Whitby, Ontario. She played at Anderson C.V.I, the same high school Vermont head coach Jen Johnson attended. Johnson also served as head coach of the Canadian U19 National Team for the last World Cup in 2007 and lead Team Canada to a fourth place finish.

Mackendrick is the second Canadian recruit for the Catamounts in the program's history, joining former All-American Kristen Millar '09. Mackendrick won three provincial championships and was the team's rookie of the year as a freshman.

The 2011 FIL U19 World Championship will be the first time the event will be held in Europe. The last championship, in 2007, was played at Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario, where Canada finished fourth overall. Team Canada won the bronze medal in 2003 and 1999 and also finished fourth in the inaugural event in 1995.

UVM freshmen Keagan Gallagher and Jake Remien were named to the Inside Lacrosse Inaugural Women's All-Name Team in January.

Caitie Izzo and Megan MacDonald rank among the active leaders in NCAA Division I women's lacrosse. Izzo ranks 34th in caused turnovers (43), while MacDonald is eight in draw controls (126) and 24th in ground balls (96).

MacDonald enters her senior campaign ranked among the top-10 all-time Vermont leaders in five different categories.

Vermont plays a challenging schedule on an annual basis. In 2011, the Catamounts will face four schools that are ranked or receiving votes in the IWLCA Preseason Poll. Dartmouth and Boston University come in ranked 14th and 18th, respectively and Albany and Denver are receiving votes in the poll.

Head coach Jen Johnson, who is in her seventh season on the Vermont sidelines, adds 12 newcomers to the mix this season.

WHO'S NEXT | 2011 Schedule | Cat Pride Fan Rewards Program
Vermont travels to Colgate for a 1 p.m. game on Sunday, February 27 and will host Dartmouth on March 2 at Moulton Winder Field in the home opener. The game is scheduled for 3 p.m. and live video will be available on a pay-per-view basis ($4.99) via CatamounTV at UVMathletics.com.

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