Tough Week for Men’s and Women’s Lacrosse

The men’s and women’s lacrosse teams had a difficult week, coming up short against Stony Brook and University of Delaware, respectively.

The men’s team kicked things off at home as they hosted the Seawolves in the first ever meeting between the teams on Saturday, March 25. Although it was all Hawks throughout the majority of the first quarter with a 5-0 run, Stony Brook’s Dylan Palloneti scored twice to close out the first period trailing 5-2. The Seawolves continued a 6-1 run spanning through the second period to tie the game 6-6 with just over seven minutes left in the first half. The Hawks and the Seawolves traded goals two more times before heading into the locker room, once again finding themselves tied, this time 8-8.

Coming out of halftime, Stony Brook put away three goals to pull ahead 11-8. Monmouth tied things up yet again as the Hawks notched three of their own to make the score 11 all around with 14 minutes left in the final period. After trading goals to make the score an even 12-12 with just over eight minutes to play, the Seawolves stole the show with the final three goals of the matchup to pull ahead one final time and secure the 15-12 win.

Although Stony Brook dominated in shots, shots on goal, and ground balls, Monmouth controlled faceoffs by a large margin, 21-10, thanks to an impressive performance by senior midfielder Matt Soutar, who won 19 of 28 faceoffs in the matchup. This is the third most in team history, and he is now the first Hawk to win 400 career faceoffs as he is now 412-for-713 in his career. Freshman midfielder Jared Chantz made his collegiate debut for Monmouth and went 2 for 3 in faceoffs to add to the Hawks’ 22 won faceoffs.

Soutar also led Monmouth with a program record 14 ground balls, accounting for nearly half of Monmouth’s 30 total in the matchup. Despite ultimately coming up short on offense, several Hawks notched goals for Monmouth to put up a strong fight against Stony Brook. Freshman attacker Ty Caffarelli scored a hat trick to tie with graduate attacker Cade Stratton and senior attacker Connor Macrae for the team lead with 15 goals each. Notably, the first-year has notched at least one point in every game so far this season.

Junior midfielder Sean Ketchen scored twice in the matchup, his third-career two-goal game and second of the year as he now has six goals in 2023. Soutar also scored two goals while senior midfielder Matt Karsian and sophomore midfielder Luke Cole each notched one goal of their own. Despite the strong effort, it wasn’t enough to earn the elusive win over the Seawolves and the Hawks are now 1-2 in home games this season.

The women’s team saw a similar outcome in their matchup. Coming off of a narrow 12-11 win against Elon last week, the Lady Hawks found themselves on the other side of the equation after falling to the University of Delaware in a heartbreaking overtime loss on Saturday, March 25.

Monmouth came out strong and put up the first three goals of the match, which came from graduate midfielder Cassidy Orban, junior attacker Mya Brock, and senior midfielder Maddie Murphy, respectively. The Blue Hens responded with two goals before Brock found the back of the net yet again to end the first period with a 4-2 Hawks lead.

Monmouth started the second quarter in a similar fashion to the first, pulling further ahead of Delaware with goals from senior midfielder Marissa Lagera and Orban. Despite another two goals from the home team, the Hawks put up another three to total five for the period and nine across the first half compared to the Blue Hens’ four.

Following their strong performance in the first two periods, Monmouth struggled in the second half as Delaware found their stride and started their comeback journey. Lagera notched the Hawks’ only goal of the third quarter, but four different Blue Hens combined for five goals on the period to go into the final quarter trailing just one goal, 10-9.

Penalties proved to be a weak point for Monmouth during this period as three different Hawks were issued yellow cards. Delaware capitalized on two of these man-up situations to get themselves back in the game.

Freshman attacker Shea Berigan scored early in the fourth for the Hawks to extend their lead, followed by an additional goal from sophomore attacker Caroline Brennan to make the score 12-9 with just over eight minutes left in regulation. Monmouth blew a fuse on the offensive end and did not score again for the rest of the matchup. Unfortunately for the Hawks, Delaware seemed to find the energy that they had lost as the Blue Hens notched three more goals, the last with just 14 seconds left in regulation after MU’s senior defender Gabriella Vangeli was given a yellow card, to tie the game 12-12 and send it into overtime.

Delaware won the opening draw in OT and took just 30 seconds to find the back of the net and secure the come-from-behind win. Lizzie Yurchak scored the final goal of the matchup to earn a game-high six goal performance for the Blue Hens.

The Hawks’ dominance in the first half followed by the Blue Hens’ comeback in the second resulted in nearly-identical team stats to show just how close of a matchup it truly was. Both Monmouth and Delaware recorded 32 shots and 21 shots on goal. The home team pulled slightly ahead in almost all other categories: they led Monmouth 9-8 in saves, 18-17 in ground balls, and 16-12 in draw controls.

Despite trailing in the game total, Orban earned five of the Hawks’ draw controls to bring her to 68 for the season and seventh overall for single-season draw controls at Monmouth.

Brock and Brennan combined for five goals for the Hawks, three of which came from the junior attacker to earn her third hattrick of the season and sixth of her career. Brennan, Monmouth’s young offensive powerhouse, notched two goals to extend her scoring streak to 28 games and her points streak to 30 games. Her four assists were also good for the most assists by a Hawk in a single game this season as well as a tie for 17th in single-game history at Monmouth.

Junior attacker Ella Spears also had a goal and an assist in the game, bringing her to 12 assists on the season and 40 for her career. She is now the 15th player in school history to reach 40 or more career assists.

Up next, the Hawks will try to find their way back into the win column as both the men’s and women’s teams host Hofstra in a doubleheader on Saturday, April 1. The men will kick things off at 11 a.m. and the women will follow shortly after at 2 p.m.