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FIELD HOCKEY SEMIFINALS: SJC, Lasell Both Headed Back to GNAC Championship



#2 Lasell at #1 Saint Joseph's
Saturday, November 3, 1PM

NEWTON, Mass. – 
Junior Mindy Esposito (Sunderland, Mass.) and senior Julia Franzik (Wallingford, Conn.) scored a goal and an assist each Wednesday afternoon as second-seeded Lasell College defeated third-seeded Colby-Sawyer College, 5-1, in a Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) field hockey tournament semifinal at Grellier Field.

Lasell improves to 14-6 and advances to the GNAC championship game for the second straight year. The Lasers will play top-seeded Saint Joseph's College of Maine (18-1) Saturday in Standish, Maine, in a rematch of last year's title game, won by Saint Joe's, 3-0. The Monks blanked Simmons College, 6-0, in Wednesday's other semifinal. Colby-Sawyer ends its record-breaking season at 14-5. 

The home team got on the board in the 11th minute off a play from a penalty corner. Esposito inserted the ball and eventually got it back from junior Brooke Landry (New Milford, Conn.). Esposito then scored into the open left side of the cage.

Less than two minutes later, the Lasers benefited from another penalty corner. Senior Cailin Flannery (Medford, N.H.), the conference's leading goal scorer, notched her 21st of the season with an unassisted tally at 12:16. Lasell sophomore Megan Horrigan (Wakefield, Mass.) gave the Lasers a 3-0 advantage at 24:19 when she finished a pass from Franzik.

Senior Jordan Teixeira (Exeter, N.H.) got one back for the Chargers with her team leading 12th goal of the season midway through the second half.

Lasell tacked on a pair of late goal off the sticks of junior Sam Taylor (Hanover, Mass.) and Franzik to secure the 5-1 win.

Lasell keeper Sofia Rodriguez (Peabody, Mass.) made nine saves in the win, while Colby-Sawyer goalie Abby Ladd (Colchester, Vt.) finished with 11 saves. The Lasers finished with a 23-12 advantage in shots and a 13-5 margin in penalty corners.

Courtesy of Lasell Athletics Communications.

#1 SJC 6, #4 SIMMONS 0
STANDISH, Maine – The number four seeded Simmons University field hockey team was defeated by host number one seed Saint Joseph's College, 6-0, this evening in the Great Northeast Athletic Conference Championship Tournament Semifinals at the SJC Athletics Complex in Standish, Maine. The Sharks finish their season at 7-12, while the Monks, who received votes in the most recent National Field Hockey Coaches Association national poll, win their 11th straight game and improve to 18-1.

Saint Joseph's advances to the Championship match for the fourth straight season on November 3, when they host second-seeded Lasell College, which defeated number three seed Colby-Sawyer College, 5-1, earlier in the day.

The Monks dominated possession with a 19-3 shooting advantage, including 12-2 in the second half, and owned a 14-2 penalty corner differential. 

First year forward Emma Rutledge (Alfred, Maine) contributed to all three first half goals for Saint Joseph's with a pair of goals and an assist. She tallied the first two goals of the game on penalty corners as part of her first collegiate hat trick for the Monks. Junior midfielder Maddy Beaulieu (West Gardiner, Maine) found Rutledge 7:41 into the match for her first goal of the night. Rutledge gave Saint Joseph's a 2-0 lead six minutes later on a feed from senior back Arianna Kahler (Lisbon Falls, Maine). Rutledge connected with senior midfielder Kara Kelly (York, Maine) for the Monks' third marker and the seventh of the year for Kelly with 12:28 left in the opening period. The score remained the same for the remainder of the half as the home team took a 3-0 margin into the intermission.

Saint Joseph's followed its first half trend by scoring early in the second stanza when it took advantage of another penalty corner opportunity for a goal. Kahler recorded her second helper of the evening with a cross to sophomore midfielder Alexandra Belaire (Greene, Maine) for her 11th tally of the season coming just over six minutes into the half. The Monks tacked on their fifth marker midway through the period when senior midfielder Kayla Kelly (York, Maine) sent a centering cross from the right side to junior forward Libby Pomerleau (Limerick, Maine) for her league-leading 18th goal of the season with 18:19 left in the contest. Rutledge capped the scoring with her third goal coming on her fourth shot in a span of 31 seconds to increase the Saint Joseph's lead to 6-0 and give her 16 goals for the year.

Simmons received a shot each from sophomore midfielder Maggie Fuzak (Buffalo, N.Y.), first year forward Lilly Devitt (Belmont, Mass.) and a shot on cage from senior back Meghan Fontaine (Westminster, Mass.).

Sophomore goalie Lucy McNamara (Brewster, Mass.) recorded seven saves for the Sharks, while senior keeper Megan Baker (Gorham, Maine) stopped one shot to record her 29th career shutout in the win for the Monks.

Courtesy of Simmons Athletics Communications.

The Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) is an NCAA Division III association made up of 13 member institutions and over 3,000 student-athletes across the New England region. Founded in 1995, the GNAC annually sponsors and administers 20 championships, while balancing academic integrity, athletic opportunity and community involvement in an effort to enhance the student-athlete experience.