PROVIDENCE, R.I. (5/7/16) – The Lasell College women's lacrosse team is Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Champions after upsetting the #2 seeded Wildcats of Johnson and Wales University, 12-9, in the conference title game Saturday afternoon at the Scotts Miracle Gro Complex. The Lasers, who were seeded #4 for the tournament, improve to 13-6 on the year and live to see another game in the NCAA Tournament next weekend. The Wildcats, in their third year as a program, close out the season at 13-6.
Sophomore Taylor Yandow (Moretown, Vt.) was named Tournament MVP after a standout postseason performance, and led the Lasers in today's triumph with four goals, four draw controls, three ground balls, and four caused turnovers. Joining Yandow on the All-Tournament squad was senior Ashlee Pechulis (Westfield, Mass.) who tossed in a pair of goals, and classmate Bridget Munnelly (Bellingham, Mass.) who scooped up four ground balls and three draw controls with a goal of her own. Senior Lisi Anczok, (Buffalo, N.Y.) caused two turnovers with one ground ball as the final Tournament Team field players, while junior Bridget Delaney (Weymouth, Mass.) rounded out the All-Tourney squad and backstopped the Lasers to their second GNAC Title with eight saves.
Junior Kayla Smith (Eastham, Mass.) powered the Wildcats in the setback with four goals, while sophomore Raquel Pederzani (Coventry, R.I.) recorded a hat-trick, her eighth of the season. Smith and Pederzani were named to the All-Tournament team, as well as junior Lydia Knapp (Glen Falls, N.Y.), who added a pair of goals and three draw controls for the Wildcats.
Senior Taylor Dooley (Barnstable, Mass.) set the pace early with back-to-back opening goals for the Lasers, sandwich by a Pederzani marker from Gabrielle Vasile (Milford, Mass.) for a 2-1 Lasell lead. With 1:50 left in the half, Pechulis cut to the crease for an unassisted goal and a 6-3 bump, but Pederzani and Knapp skimmed the twine to pull within a single goal, 6-5, heading into the halftime break.
The Lasers kicked it into high gear in the second stanza, and opened up the final 30 with three goals from Yandow, senior Bridget Doherty (Franklin, Mass.) and freshman Jordan McComb (Cumberland, R.I.). Both teams traded a pair of goals in the following plays, with Yandow on both for Lasell, as the Lasers owned an 11-7 advantage with 9:13 left to play. The Wildcats took the draw from Yandow's goal, and were thereafter awarded with a free position shot from Knapp. Using the attempt to score, Knapp took the ball to net and was denied point blank by Delaney, keeping the momentum on the Lasers' side until the final whistle.
With 8:07 on the clock, foul trouble on the Wildcats granted Lasell consecutive free position opportunities, where the Lasers moved the ball around patiently before Doherty diced a JWU defender and extended the lead, 12-7. Pederzani and Smith would connect on two more JWU goals, but the three-goal gap stood for a 12-9 final in favor of Lasell.
The first rounds of the NCAA DIII Women's Lacrosse Tournament will be held on Saturday, May 14. The Lasers will learn their fate during the NCAA selection show at 9:30 p.m. tomorrow, May 8.
Taylor Yandow, Lasell MVP
Bridget Delaney, Lasell
Ashlee Pechulis, Lasell
Bridget Munnelly, Lasell
Lisi Anczok, Lasell
Kayla Smith, Johnson & Wales
Lydia Knapp, Johnson & Wales
Raquel Pederzani, Johnson & Wales
Kristen Tuleja, Emmanuel
Lauren White, Emmanuel
Eliabeth Elcock, Saint Joseph's of Maine
Meghan Williams, Saint Joseph's of Maine