March 22, 2013

St. Joseph's Stops Skid Against St. Mary's

from press release

PHILADELPHIA - Posting its second-best offensive effort of the season, the women's lacrosse team outscored Saint Mary's, 16-13, to snap a two-game losing streak on Friday afternoon on Finnesey Field. With their sixth win of the season, the Hawks (6-3) have already surpassed their total number of wins from last season with seven regular-season games still to come. Just 24 seconds into the first half, graduate student attack Meghan McDevitt scored her first of three goals on the day to give the Hawks the early 1-0 advantage.

Freshman attack Bonnie McShane followed suit with her second collegiate goal at the 26:10 mark, and junior midfielder Val Paolucci added her first goal of the game at the 22:23 mark to put the Hawks ahead, 3-0.

Saint Mary's (2-4) would strike back with a 4-2 run that spanned the course of just over 10 minutes to pull the Gaels to within one goal as they trailed just 5-4 with 8:31 remaining in the first half.

From that point, the Hawks would pull away as five different Hawks exploded for a 6-0 run that spanned the remainder of the first half and early through the second.

The Hawks and Gaels would exchange multiple goals over the next 10 minutes of play as Saint Mary's closed its deficit to five goals, 13-8, with 16:07 remaining in regulation.

However, Saint Joseph's used another run, this time 3-0, to pull away once more as sophomore midfielder Julia Falcone scored her second goal of the game and the attack pair of sophomore Hallie Pickard and junior Abby Ananian each scored a goal within 32 seconds of one another to hold a safe 16-8 lead with just over six minutes remaining in the game.

Saint Mary's struck back, going on a 5-0 run over the final five and a half minutes, but Saint Joseph's would hold on for the 16-13 victoy.

Paolucci led six different Hawks in scoring with four goals and added one assist on the day.

"Val really worked on her game this week and using her speed to her advantage," said head coach Denise Roessler. "She definitely did that today."

McDevitt was dangerous on both sides of the field as she scored three goals, dished out three assists, and grabbed four draw controls. Ananian was good for three goals, an assist and a game-high eight draw controls while in her first collegiate start, McShane posted a brilliant two-goal, three-assist performance.

"Bonnie stepped in [for the injured Bianca Angstadt] and she came out here and played as if she's been playing and starting for the entire season," said Roessler. "It made a huge impact for us. She has a knack of seeing feeds and she can score at will."

On the defensive end, junior Brittany Hanrahan picked up a game-high eight ground balls while freshman Caroline Hagan picked up three ground balls and caused a team-high three turnovers.

Freshman goalkeeper Genevieve Giblin picked up the win between the pipes, making five saves on the day.

Saint Mary's was led by Jillian Chong and Jaclyn Biggers, who scored four goals apiece.

For the game, Saint Joseph's outshot Saint Mary's 30-21, a result of an increased expectation of offensive explosion.

"Since Old Dominion, offensively, we've been working on increasing our shooting percentage and moving the ball quicker on attack and our movement on attack to be quicker and more dynamic," said Roessler. "They did that today, so I'm proud of them."

Saint Joseph's also held a 32-22 advantage in ground balls and 18-13 advantage in draw controls. The Hawks' forced pressure on the defensive end of the field, holding Saint Mary's to just nine clears in 17 attempts in addition to a caused 22 turnovers.

Saint Joseph's will open Atlantic 10 conference action next Friday, March 29, when the Hawks host city-rival Temple at 3:00 p.m. on Finnesey Field.

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