Early Scoring Spree Sends Women's Soccer to 4th Straight GNAC Final
NEWTON, Mass. (11/5/2013) – The Lasell College women's soccer team advanced to their fourth consecutive Great Northeast Athletic Conference Championship game with a 5-2 defeat of Emmanuel College on Tuesday afternoon. The Lasers improved their record to 16-3-1 on the season, tying their program record for victories while Emmanuel dropped to 10-8-3 for the year.
Freshmen Megan Cullen (Amesbury, Mass.) scored a pair of goals for Lasell, while Bridget Lynch (Dover, N.H.) netted her 30th goal of the season and Devon Day (Hartford, Vt.) added her eighth goal of the year in the contest. Lynch needs one more goal to ties the program's single season record of 31 currently held by Merina Anderson.
Ashley Cervin (Milford, Conn.) scored her first goal of the season for Emmanuel, while Lindsey Garvey (Warwick, R.I.) tallied her ninth goal of the year in the loss.
Lasell opened the scoring in the fourth minute of play when Bridget Lynch beat the Saints defenders to the right post and watched her shot glance off the hands of the Emmanuel keeper and roll across the goal line for a 1-0 lead. Devon Day made it a 2-0 lead in the 10th minute for the Lasers with an unassisted goal before a failed clearance by Emmanuel resulted in an own goal to give Lasell a 3-0 lead in the 25th minute.
Megan Cullen scored a pair of goals in the 30th and 39th minutes to give Lasell a 5-0 advantage heading into the half and seemingly putting the game out of reach. Lasell possessed a 16-6 advantage in shots in the first 45 minutes of action, controlling the action and keeping Emmanuel on their heels.
The second half of play began much like the first, the Lasers creating chances and forcing Emmanuel to take on a defensive style, out-shooting the Saint 6-2 in the opening 12 minutes of the half. Emmanuel wouldn't concede however and with 30 minutes to play began to control the run of play and take the game to the hosts. A Lasell defender cleared a shot by Darcey Sullivan (Dalton, Mass.) to prevent Emmanuel from getting on the board in the 64th minute, but the shutout didn't last much longer. Ashley Cervin took a failed clearance by Lasell and stuck a shot just under the cross bar in the 65th minute to trim the deficit to 5-1. The Saints weren't done, adding a goal in the 68th minute thanks to a beautiful strike from Lindsey Garvey to make it 5-2.
Emmanuel continued to press, nearly scoring in the 70th minute when a ball by Sullivan was cleared off the line by Lasell for the second time in the half. The Saints had several more scoring chances, and saw a pair of efforts thwarted by Gina Grimes (Pelham, N.H.) in goal for Lasell, falling 5-2 despite out-shooting the hosts 14-9 in the second half.
Leah Pappalardo (Whitman, Mass.) made four saves to earn the win in goal for Lasell, while Caitlin Greco (Higganum, Conn.) and Gina Grimes each recorded a pair of saves in relief in the net. Brenna Smith (Wantagh, N.Y.) started for the Saints, making five saves before making way for Abaigeal Thivierge (Bennington, Vt.) who stopped four shots on the afternoon.
Lasell will host the winner of tonight's match-up between #6 Suffolk and #7 Simmons on Saturday November 9th at Lasell's Taylor Field for the GNAC Championship.