April 29, 2012

No. 2 Orange Win 14th Straight Game

from press release

SYRACUSE, N.Y. – The No. 2 Syracuse women’s lacrosse team completed an undefeated BIG EAST regular season for the second time in school history with an 18-3 victory against Villanova on Sunday, April 29 in the Carrier Dome. The Orange extended its winning streak to 14 games and finished the regular season with a 15-2 record.

Syracuse claimed the outright BIG EAST regular-season title with an 8-0 mark in league play. The Orange has now won or shared the conference crown in five of the last six seasons.

Prior to the game, Syracuse recognized its senior class. Jill Cammett (Norwell, Mass.), Sarah Holden (Marcellus, N.Y.), Monika Klus (Adelaide, Australia), Janelle Stegeland (Cortland, N.Y.), Lauren Welch (Camillus, N.Y.) and Heather Wentz (West Chester, Pa.) were honored for its hard work and dedication to the program.

Junior Michelle Tumolo (Mullica Hill, N.J.) led a balanced scoring attack for the Orange. She tied her career highs with eight points and five assists. Sophomore Alyssa Murray (West Babylon, N.Y.) scored a team-high four goals and finished with five points, while Holden recorded two goals and an assist. Freshmen Kailah Kempney (Carthage, N.Y.) and Devon Collins (Rochester, N.Y.) added two goals apiece as 10 different players found the back of the net for SU.

The Orange took control of the game early, scoring the first seven goals of the contest. Tumolo had two goals and two assists while Murray added a pair of goals and an assist during the scoring run. Hannah Goforth netted Villanova’s (4-12, 2-6) first goal of the day at the 6:57 mark on a free position, but Murray scored an unassisted goal with 4:05 on the clock to give SU an 8-1 halftime lead.

Syracuse controlled the second half and Welch’s goal at the 14:59 mark put Syracuse ahead 17-2.  Shannon Lane found the back of the net for Villanova with 10:48 remaining, but junior Taylor Nims (Watertown, N.Y.) recorded her first goal of the season on an assist from Welch as  SU matched it largest lead of the day and posted the 18-3 victory.

“Overall, I thought it was a great way to honor our seniors today” said Syracuse head coach Gary Gait. “I challenged my team to go out today and play for our seniors and honor them. I thought everybody stepped up and really did a good job making sure we didn’t have a letdown in the last regular-season game. We played well and closed out the regular season undefeated in the BIG EAST for the second time in (school) history. I am proud of the efforts this team has put in all season. We are excited to move to the next stage.”

The Orange dominated in the circle, winning 20-of-23 draw controls. Kempney and sophomore Natalie Glanell (Davidsonville, Md.) led the way with four apiece, while junior Becca Block (Stratham, N.H.) had three. Syracuse outshot Villanova, 40-15, and picked up 15 ground balls to 11 for the Wildcats. Sophomore Alyssa Costantino (West Islip, N.Y.) made five saves, and Kelsey Richardson (Memphis, N.Y.) added three for the Orange. Dani Wiedmeier and Amanda Hirschfeld combined for 12 saves for Villanova.

The Orange is the No. 1 seed in the BIG EAST Tournament, which starts on Thursday, May 3 in the Carrier Dome. Syracuse will take on fourth-seed Georgetown in the second semifinal at approximately 8:15 p.m. No. 2 seed Loyola and third-seed Notre Dame will play in the first semifinal at 5:30 p.m. The championship game is scheduled for Saturday, May 5 at 1 p.m.

Game Notes – Junior Michelle Tumolo and sophomore Alyssa Murray both moved up on Syracuse’s single-season leader lists with their performances against Villanova. Murray now has 87 points this season, which ranks sixth all-time at SU. Tumolo moved into the top 10 with her eight points against Villanova. She holds down the ninth spot with 79 points. Murray is now in a three-way tie for fifth place on the single-season goals scored list with 59, while Tumolo climbed to No. 4 on the assists list with 39 this season.

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