EASTON, Mass. – Junior Kelly Pickett (Chelmsford, Mass.) and sophomore Caitlin Villareal (Portsmouth, R.I.) each scored five goals and joined the 100-point club as the 14th-ranked Saint Anselm College women's lacrosse team recorded a 16-13 victory against 12th-ranked Stonehill College on Tuesday evening at W.B. Mason Stadium.
The Hawks improve to 11-3, including 8-3 in Northeast-10 play to force a three-way tied for third place in the standings. The Skyhawks fall to 10-6, 8-3 NE-10. The 11 wins for Saint Anselm set a new program record for single-season victories, surpassing the 10 triumphs from a year ago.
Pickett began the scoring 1:25 into the contest with a free-position goal. After Kelsey Shannahan tied it just under four minutes later, a strike by junior Kaitlyn Stazinski (Pembroke, Mass.) off a feed from sophomore Erin Marshall (Woburn, Mass.), followed by a pair of free-position tallies from Villareal, gave the Hawks a 4-1 lead with 18:55 remaining in the opening half.
Stonehill would score a pair of goals within 13 seconds of each other to trim the deficit to 4-3 with 10:56 to play, but a free-position strike from Pickett gave Saint Anselm a cushion back 2:20 later.
Shannahan answered back to keep it a one-goal game with just under seven minutes left, but the Hawks scored three goals in the final 1:08 to bring an 8-4 lead into the break. Pickett scored the first one before Villareal followed it up with 25 ticks left. Pickett then reached the 100-point plateau as she found the back of the net with one second showing on the clock to add an exclamation point to the first half.
Caitlin Sweeney scored for Stonehill 52 seconds into the second stanza, but goals from Marshall and classmate Michelle Kudlate (Waltham, Mass.) opened the Saint Anselm lead to 10-5 with just under 28 minutes remaining. Shannahan potted another just under two minutes later, but a pair from Pickett and Villareal further stretched the gap to 12-6 with 22:19 on the clock.
Brooke Rudden scored her second of the night before Villareal answered with her final goal of the contest that gave her 100 career points with 14:58 remaining. Rudden then scored another just 1:05 later before Shannahan and Sweeney found the back of the cage to pull Stonehill within 13-10 with 10:02 to play.
Junior Marissa Daly (Marshfield, Mass.) and Stazinski gave the Hawks more breathing room with tallies that pushed the lead to 15-10 with under seven minutes on the clock, but Rebecca Matheson began a three-goal run with 2:39 left to make it a two-goal game. Shannahan buried a free-position chance 35 seconds later and Sweeney scored with 37 seconds left to cut it to 15-13. Daly potted her second of the game with 11 seconds left, however, to seal it.
Sophomore goalkeeper Jane Bunn (St. John's, Fla.) turned away two of the six shots she faced in the first half, while junior Allee Ramzi (Cumberland, R.I.) made four saves on 13 shots in the second half. Ashley Armstrong stopped six shots for the Skyhawks.
Saint Anselm held a 26-22 advantage in shots, including 14-7 in the opening stanza, while Stonehill owned a 17-13 edge in draw controls. The Hawks were an efficient 7-for-12 on free-position opportunities, while the Skyhawks were 2-for-3.
The Hawks return to action Saturday, April 26 at 1 p.m. as they close out their regular season by playing host to Southern Connecticut State University on Senior Day. Stay up-to-date with the latest news, including game previews and recaps, directly from the Saint Anselm College athletic department by liking us on Facebook and following us on Twitter @STAHawks.