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Saint Joseph's (Maine) Field Hockey Earns Third Consecutive GNAC Title


Courtesy of SJC Athletics Communications

NCAA Tournament to be
announced 11:30 PM Sunday night

STANDISH, Maine – Top-seeded Saint Joseph's College (19-1) toppled #2 Lasell College (14-7), 4-0, in the 2018 Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Field Hockey Championship at the SJC Athletics Complex on Sunday afternoon.

With the win the Monks claim their third-consecutive conference crown and have secured the GNAC's automatic qualifier into the NCAA DIII Field Hockey Tournament, which begins on Wednesday. The tournament bracket will be announced Sunday evening at 11:30 PM. 

Saint Joseph's grabbed an early lead when freshman Emma Rutledge (Alfred, Maine) netted her 17th goal of the season off an Arianna Kahler (Lisbon Falls, Maine) assist at the 3:19 mark.

Despite posting numerous scoring chances, the Monks did not add to their lead until the 56th minute when sophomore Alexandria Belaire (Greene, Maine) potted her 12th tally of the year off a penalty corner. Kahler was credited with an assist on the play.

St. Joe's managed to put the game well out of reach when junior Libby Pomerleau (Limerick, Maine) scored a pair of goals in a matter of two minutes and 31 seconds, starting with a strike off a Rutledge feed at the 61:02 mark. Pomerleau scored her 20th goal of the season in the 64th minute to account for the 4-0 final and was named Tournament MVP following the victory. 

With her second tally of the game, Pomerleau broke the Monks' career goals record and now has 58 goals in 62 games over three seasons. Former standout Kayla Nowell '11 held the record previously and netted 57 markers in 75 games over four campaigns.

SJC senior Megan Baker (Gorham, Maine) posted four stops to notch the 57th victory - and 30th shutout – of her career. Lasell freshman Sofia Rodriguez (Peabody, Mass.) turned away six shots in the losing effort.

Saint Joseph's held considerable advantages in shots (23-5), shots on goal (11-4), and penalty corners (19-2) in the championship triumph.

With the victory, Saint Joseph's is now 19-4 all-time versus Lasell College and has now defeated the Lasers in seven of the last eight games against their conference counterpart. The Monks defeated the Lasers, 3-0, in the 2017 GNAC Championship in Newton, Mass. 

2018 GNAC Field Hockey All-Tournament Team
Abby Ladd, Colby-Sawyer
Jordan Teixeira, Colby-Sawyer
Maddy Beaulieu, SJC
Alexandra Belaire, SJC
Meghan Burke SJC
Libby Pomerleau, SJC (MVP)
Emma Rutledge, SJC
Meghan Fontaine, Simmons
Ana Giarrusso, Simmons
Mindy Esposito, Lasell
Julia Franzik, Lasell 
Sam Taylor, Lasell 

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.