Women lacrosse delivered two impressive wins this past week. A balanced team effort resulted in a 14-11 victory over Fairfield on Wednesday and this was followed up with a 14-12 win over perennially dominant Canisius on Sunday. With the two wins Monmouth now stands at 5-8 overall and 3-1 in Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) play.
It took a team effort to end Canisius’s 27 straight regular season game winning streak on a cold Sunday morning up in Buffalo. Three goal games from sophomore midfielder Chloe Novak, senior midfielder Caroline Corbliss, and senior midfielder Alexa Smith combined with a nine save game from junior goalkeeper Riley Brager helped the Hawks come away with the 14-12 victory.
“Riley had another hugely consistent day today,” Head Coach Jordan Trautman said. “She made a really important save at the end of the game which really clinched the outcome.”
Even though the Hawks never gave up the lead the win did not come easily. Monmouth scored four times over the first ten minutes to take an early 4-1 lead. Canisius battled back with three straight goals to tie it up at four with ten left to the half. Each team exchanged goals with each other over the remaining ten minutes and went to the half tied at six a piece.
Monmouth struck first in the second thanks to Smith’s second of the day which was followed up with a goal from Novak. The Griffins answered right back with two goals of their own with 22 minutes left to play and it was tied up at eight.
Novak put the Hawks up again off an assist from junior attack Jenny Staines, who followed up with a goal of her own shortly after. With 20 minutes left on the clock the Hawks had the two-goal lead which they would not surrender over the remainder of the half. Monmouth managed to put four more up on the board and a clutch save from Brager sealed the 14-12 win.
“I’m so excited for our team and specifically the seniors for our win today,” Trautman said. “It was a complete team effort from bench to cage and was led by the leadership and toughness of our seniors.”
Wednesday’s bounce back win featured six different Hawks scoring and familiar names contributing in big time fashion. Smith was a force on the field, scoring a team high five times. Corbliss brought the energy with four points and caused two turnovers on the defensive end of the field.
“The energy was really high today. In the locker room we were having a lot of fun and I think that energy carried over onto the field,” Corbliss said. “We were composed on defense, didn’t force anything, and worked as a unit.”
The first half went back and forth as both teams battled to a 6-6 tie by the end of the period. Fairfield jumped out to the lead by burying two quick goals within the first three minuets of play. The Hawks responded with two goals of their own and brought the game to a 2-2 tie.
From there, the Stags recaptured the advantage but the Hawks buried two straight to pull ahead by one at the midpoint of the first half. Both teams would exchange goals over the remainder period and end with a 6-6 tie at the midway point.
Entering the second half Smith buried two straight but the Stags rattled off three unanswered goals to put themselves right back on top with 14 minutes left to play. Corbliss scored the first of four straight goals over a four-minute span and the Hawks recaptured a 13-9 lead. From there, Monmouth never gave up that lead over the remainder of the game and cruised to a 14-11 win.
“In the last few games we’ve had one or two areas of the game go well and today we were able to string together, three, four and five parts of the game really well,” Trautman said. “It was more of a complete game for us and even though it wasn’t perfect we were consistent in a number areas of the game.”
The Hawks next square off against in-conference rival Niagara at 12:00 p.m. on Saturday at Kessler Stadium.
PHOTO COURTESY of Chris Podosek