BURLINGTON, Vt. - The Quinnipiac women's lacrosse team defeated Vermont, 12-11, to earn its first victory of the season on Sunday afternoon at Winder Field. Senior Lauren Matuszczak (East Longmeadow, Mass.) collected four points (three goals, one assist) on the afternoon, while junior Marissa Caroleo (North Babylon, N.Y.) contributed two goals and one assist in the outing. The win improves Quinnipiac's overall record to 1-3 on the season, while Vermont falls to 2-4 overall on the year.
"We came out really fired up and opened up a big lead," said head coach Danie Caro. "But to Vermont's credit, they fought back and eventually took a lead in the second half. I'm very proud of the team for the way they were able to rally and make the adjustments they needed to make late in the game. Having a victory like this is a lot more satisfying than having just won in a blowout because now we know we can compete in a close game and we can finish games when we need to."
Aside from Matuszczak and Caroleo, the Bobcats received offensive support from junior Devon Gibney (Hopkinton, Mass.), who tallied two goals and one assist, and Lianne Toomey (Hicksville, N.Y.) who scored two key second half goals. Sophomore Sarah Allen (Glastonbury, Conn.), senior Christine Sinnigen (Sudbury, Mass.), and senior Laura Iannotti (Rocky Point, N.Y.) each contributed one goal in the game.
Quinnipiac grabbed the early 1-0 lead on Caroleo's first tally of the contest with 28:46 remaining. After Vermont re-tied the score, the Bobcats then pushed its lead to 7-1, experiencing its highest scoring streak of the season with six straight goals. In that time span, Gibney netted two goals, while Iannotti, Sinnigen, Matuszczak and Caroleo each added one.
Vermont then went on its own three goal scoring streak to halt Quinnipiac's momentum. Matuszczak's goal with 6:08 remaining ended Vermont's scoring run and increased the Bobcats' lead to 8-4. The Catamounts netted the final two goals of the half to give the game a halftime score of 8-6.
Much of Quinnipiac's early success was due to its ability to gain possession on the draw controls, as the team collected the first eight draw controls of the contest. In the half, Quinnipiac held a 10 to 5 draw control advantage and owned a 14 to 11 advantage in the contest overall.
Vermont continued to control the possession at the start of the second half, and took its first lead of the contest, 9-8, with 22:41 remaining in the game. A goal from Toomey with 18:15 remaining in the game stopped Vermont's scoring streak and brought the Bobcats back to within one goal.
Quinnipiac took advantage of two Vermont yellow cards and netted two goals during a span of three minutes to regain the lead, 11-10. Matuszczak tied the score with 14:08 left in the half and Toomey netted her second goal of the contest with 12:19 remaining in the period.
Allen extended the Bobcats' lead to two goals with 6:07 remaining, but the Catamounts pulled within one goal with just over four minutes remaining in the game. Quinnipiac clamped down defensively and kept Vermont off the scoreboard for the remainder of the game.
Junior goalkeeper Noelle Martello (Westbury, N.Y.) made nine saves in the game, while her counterpart Laura Barber turned away eight shots.
In the game overall, Vermont held a slight lead in ground balls, holding a 20 to 15 advantage.
Quinnipiac returns to action next Sunday, Mar. 20 when the team travels to New Britain, Conn. to face Central Connecticut at 12 p.m.