BURLINGTON, VT. – Saturday afternoon University of New Hampshire (1-3, 0-2) women’s lacrosse suffered their third straight disappointing loss, this time when they traveled to the University of Vermont (2-1, 2-0). The uninspiring game ended with a final score of 13-4 as the Catamounts took home their second win of the season.
Despite the results, UNH head coach Sara Albrecht was able to take away one good aspect from her team’s performance.
“I actually thought that our defense played well. They had made an adjustment in the second half, and I thought they did a good job with it,” Albrecht said.
UNH led Vermont 17-14 in shots for the first half; however, it was not a large enough advantage as the Wildcats were down by four scores going into halftime.
The scoring was kicked off less than a minute into the game with an unassisted goal from sophomore Vermont midfielder Ava Vasile.
This was followed up by a strike from fifth year UNH midfielder Rylee Leonard about four minutes into the game to tie the score at one. However, with 20:59 remaining in the half Vasile gave junior attacker Riley Halloran an assist on her first goal of the game to give the Catamounts the lead once again.
UVM extended their lead to 3-1 with an unassisted goal from sophomore attacker Mckenzie Ballard midway through the half. This coming before senior UNH midfielder Julia Neyland scored one of her own off of a rebound just about two minutes later. This brought the score back to a one-point deficit.
The Catamounts won the ensuing draw control which started their three-goal run. It started off with junior attacker Dani Paterno with 12:12 to play in the half. This continued with junior attacker Maris Large assisted by Vasile. The burst was finished with another goal from Ballard assisted by Halloran in the 22nd minute.
Vermont was up by a score of 6-2 until junior midfielder Delaney Pratt scored a goal off of an assist from sophomore attacker Liv Dunn in the final minutes of the half.
The final goal of the half was unassisted by Ballard with 2:19 to go giving UVM a 7-3 lead heading into the locker room.
Both goalies had strong games as UNH junior Issy Torres ended with a season-high of 11 saves and UVM junior Sophie Mclaughlin finished with 16 of her own.
Coach Albrecht expressed her concerns with the Wildcat’s first-half struggles.
“We definitely have had a slow start the first half in our games, coming off the bus and getting into that mentality right away is definitely something we have to work on as a team.”
Mclaughlin started off her second half with two saves against Neyland and Leonard keeping the Catamounts lead safe.
Paterno and Vasile scored the first goals of the second half in the 36th and 38th minutes making the score 9-3.
Neyland responded with an unassisted goal to bring the deficit to five goals. Unfortunately for the Wildcats, this was their final goal of the day.
Four more Vermont shots found the back of the net the rest of the second half. The first took place midway through the half when Ballard assisted Large for her second goal of the game. Junior attacker Taylor Mullen scored her first goal of the game with 10:17 to play. Redshirt junior midfielder Grace Giancola finished off the game with back-to-back goals. One being in the 51st minute and the final one in the 60th.
UNH hopes to break this three-game losing streak on Wednesday at 4 p.m. against their toughest opponent yet, Boston College (4-1,1-1).
Coach Albrecht spoke about her team’s anticipation for the challenge ahead.
“We’re extremely excited about the challenge that BC brings. Obviously, they’re a good team. Our players are excited about the challenge, to play our game, and to try and get better every step,” Albrecht exclaimed. ”We’re just trying to focus on ourselves and really capitalizing on our opportunity.”
The Wildcats will head to Chestnut Hill, Mass. for that matchup.
Photo courtesy of Brian Jenkins.