NORTON, Mass. – Third-seeded Babson College held off second-seeded Springfield College, 9-7, in the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Women's Lacrosse Tournament semifinal match on Saturday afternoon at Nordin Field.
With the victory, the Beavers (6-10, 4-3 NEWMC) advance to the NEWMAC Championship game against first-seeded Wheaton (12-6, 7-0 NEWMAC) on Sunday, April 27 at 1:00 p.m. on Nordin Field. The Lyons defeated fourth-seeded MIT earlier today by a 15-5 score.
Babson junior Rachel Secrist (Westford, Mass.) scored a game-high four goals and added two assists on the afternoon, while freshman Francesca Giovanucci (Easton, Mass.) netted two goals of her own. Sophomores Kayla Farina (Newton, Mass.), McKenzie Tucci (Winchester, Mass.) and freshman Kiley Fischer (Marblehead, Mass.) each found the back of the net once. Senior goalkeeperJulie Baharestani (Syosset, N.Y.) picked up two saves in the victory.
Junior Connie Nielson (Sayville, N.Y.) led the way for the Pride scoring three goals and assisting on three others. ClassmateEmily Rodgers (Durham, N.H.) added two goals of her own, while Michelle Dorsey (Wilbraham, Mass.) and Emily Fowler (Branford, Conn.) each found the back of the net once. Senior goalkeeper Anne Versprille (Franklin, Mass.) saved five shots in net for Springfield.
Babson opened up the scoring with back-to-back goals six minutes into play with an unassisted goal from Farina at 24:05, while Tucci followed up with a feed from Fischer at 22:23. With 16 minutes remaining in the first half, the Beavers took a 3-0 lead on a Secrist unassisted goal, her 55th of the season. The Beavers added one more with a goal by Giovanucci from Secrist to lead 4-0 halfway through the first half.
The Pride netted their first goal of the game with a strike from Nielsen with 4:58 remaining in the opening stanza and less than two minutes later, Fowler struck for the hosts of today's neutral site contest to cut the score in half on a feed from Nielsen.
Babson took a 5-2 advantage to open the second half on an unassisted goal from Secrist, her second of the game. Springfield answered on back-to-back goals from Nielsen and Rodgers to pull within a goal to make the score 5-4 with 25 minutes to play in the game.
With 23:23 on the clock, Giovanucci netted her second strike of the contest on a feed from Secrist and Fischer found the back of the net less than a minute later to take a 7-4 advantage on an assist from Katie McKenna (Sandwich, Mass.).
A late rally was sparked by the Pride with under five minutes to play as Nielsen registered a goal at the 21:38 mark, Nielson found Rodgers at 9:52, and Dorsey ripped a shot into the net at 6:48 to make the score 8-7, but it was not enough as Babson held off Springfield 9-7.
Springfield went 11-for-16 on clear attempts and converted once on a free position attempt. Babson was successful on all ten of its clear attempts and was able to pick up 10 of the 18 draw controls this afternoon.
Courtesy of Wheaton College Athletic Communications