Western New England Tops New England College in ECAC

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. Sophomore Jeanmarie Barbato (Huntington Station, NY) scored six goals to lead fourth-seeded Western New England College to a 15-10 victory over fifth-seeded New England College in a first round game of the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division III New England Championship Wednesday afternoon (May 6).

Senior Lindsey Fenton (Pelham, MA) also had a six-point afternoon with four goals and two assists for the Golden Bears who raised their record to 11-7. The Pilgrims end their season with a winning record at 10-9.

WNEC jumped to an early 5-0 lead before senior Brandi Vittum (Woodstock, VT) put the Pilgrims on the board at the 12:56 mark of the opening half. The Golden Bears ran off six unanswered goals and took an 11-3 lead at halftime.

New England College staged a mild comeback in the second half getting with five at 13-8 when freshman Amanda Naime (York, ME) scored on a free position shot with 8:32 remaining in the contest. Barbato netted her final goal just 37 seconds later and the Golden Bears held off the Pilgrims down the stretch.

Senior Michelle Thompson (Wilbraham, MA) contributed two goals and an assist for Western New England College while sophomore Taryn Lagasse (South Glastonbury, CT) chipped-in with a goal and assist. Fenton added five caused turnovers, three ground balls, and three draw controls in a fine all-around effort.

Sophomore goalie Marissa Bonitatibus (Yorktown Heights, NY) had a solid performance with 15 saves. Naime, who had four draw controls, finished with three goals and an assist for the visitors while Dresser had a pair of goals and an assist. Sophomore Emily Kuchta (Norwalk, CT) also tallied a pair of goals. Junior goalie Alexandra DiRico (Limerick, PA) kept New England College in the game by making 22 saves with 11 stops coming in each half.

WNEC and New England College are both members of The Commonwealth Coast Conference (TCCC). The Golden Bears won the regular season meeting 15-14 on April 8 in Springfield. Western New England College will visit top-seeded Roger Williams in a semifinal round contest of the ECAC Tournament on Saturday (May 9) with the time to be determined.


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