May 6, 2006
WORCESTER, Mass. - Patricia Sutton, Carolyn Smirti and Amy Archambault combined to score 11 goals to lead the Holy Cross women's lacrosse team to the program's first-ever NCAA Tournament with a 14-8 drubbing of Le Moyne in an NCAA Play-In game on Saturday afternoon at the John Coughlin Memorial Stadium on the campus of Worcester State College. The Crusaders, who have now won four straight games and nine of their last 12, have officially earned a berth into the 16-team field of the 2006 NCAA Tournament.
MAAC Champion Le Moyne, which enjoyed one of its most successful seasons in program history this season, concludes the year with a 15-4 mark.
Both Sutton (Saratoga Springs, N.Y.) and Smirti (Huntington, N.Y.) finished the game with four goals, while Archambault (West Hartford, Conn.) tallied three scores. Sophomore Kristine Corkum (Ipswich, Mass.) added two goals and classmate Cara O'Sullivan (Duxbury, Mass.) scored one. Sutton also had two assists on the day, while sophomore Nikki Bolduc (Exeter, N.H.) recorded one.
Sutton wasted no time setting the tone of the game, as she scored the first of her four goals just 18 seconds into play, and added another less than five minutes later to give Holy Cross (14-6) a quick 2-0 lead. Corkum and Smirti then scored back-to-back goals in a span of two minutes and 14 seconds for a 4-0 Crusader lead with 19:56 on the clock.
Le Moyne's Whitney Vecchio stopped the bleeding for the Dolphins when she took an Amanda Keegan pass and scored at the 17:55 mark, but Corkum responded with her second goal of the game and put the Crusaders back up by four (5-1) when she beat Le Moyne keeper Samantha Falcone with 15:33 remaining in the half. Keegan made things interesting with a goal just 11 seconds later that cut the lead to three (5-2), but Holy Cross strung together two more goals to take a 7-2 lead at the 9:42 mark. Le Moyne's Elizabeth Hewitt scored with 4:57 left to account for the 7-3 halftime score.
The Crusaders started off the second half strong as well, scoring six straight goals, giving them a comfortable 13-3 lead with 16:18 remaining in the game. Keegan ended the Le Moyne dry spell at the 13:10 mark, which started a 5-1 Dolphin run that cut the deficit to six (14-8) but it was too little, too late.
Holy Cross goalkeeper Megan Orr (Wilton, Conn.) had a solid game in net, turning away 14 shots. Falcone made six saves for the Dolphins.
Vecchio finished the game with a team-high three goals for Le Moyne, while Keegan added two. Hewitt, Kylie Rosette and Lisa McCarthy also scored for the Dolphins.
The NCAA bracket will be announced on Monday, May 8, live on CSTV. First round action begins on Sunday, May 14, at campus sites. The quarterfinals are scheduled for May 20, while the semifinals and finals are slated for May 26 and 28 at Boston University.