#18 Amherst Upends #9 Tufts in NESCAC Quarterfinals

AMHERST, MA The Amherst College women's lacrosse team earned an 11-9 win over Tufts University Sunday afternoon at Gooding Field in the NESCAC Championship quarterfinal round. The fourth-seeded Lord Jeffs (11-4/6-3 NESCAC) will travel to Trinity College to take on third-seeded Colby next weekend in the semifinals. Tufts-the fifth seed in the conference tournament-drops to 11-4 (6-3 NESCAC) and will now have to hope for an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament.

Allie Horwitz '12 (Woodbridge, CT) scored four goals for Amherst, while Kelley Trapp '11 (Monterey, CA) scored once and had three assists. Casey Egan '12 (Massapequa, NY) and Jenna Abelli '10 (Framingham, MA) each had three goals for Tufts, with Egan adding two assists.

Goalies Lamia Harik '12 (Rye Brook, NY) and Sara Bloom '11 (Summit, NJ) each moved to 11-4 on the season, with Harik making eight saves for Amherst and Bloom stopping two shots for the Jumbos.

Defense ruled the first seven minutes of the game, with both teams causing turnovers to spoil good scoring chances. Amherst had a free position opportunity five minutes in, but Bloom '11 made a nice save to keep the game scoreless.

The Jeffs took control by scoring three times in a span of 2:34 and never relinquished the lead. Only 30 seconds after Trapp assisted Hannah Walker '10 (Greenwich, CT) for the game's first goal, Horwitz came from behind the net, turned and fired a shot past Bloom to make it 2-0. Hillary Denson '13 (Summit, NJ) scored two minutes later to force Tufts into a timeout with 20:11 to play, as the hosts dominated the first 10 minutes of action.

The Jumbos would control the next 10 minutes, however, tying things up at 4-4 with 11:19 remaining in the opening half. Jenna Abelli '10 (Framingham, MA) scored three times during the stretch, putting her team on the board 10:31 into the half. Kathleen Scheld '10 (Yorktown Heights, NY) quickly made it 4-1 on a beautiful goal, with Trapp recording her second assist of the afternoon and the 100th point of her career.

Tufts scored the next three goals with 15:25, 14:20 and 11:19 remaining in the half, with an Egan unassisted tally coming in between goals by Abelli. Abelli's tying goal came on a perfectly executed spin move and led to an Amherst timeout.

The rest of the half belonged to the Jeffs, who scored three times to take a 7-4 lead into the break. After Horwitz scored on a free position shot, Walker brought Amherst's lead to 6-4 when she crossed over to her left and beat Bloom for an impressive goal. The Jeffs gained possession with 2:30 remaining and held for the last shot, with Horwitz adding another free position goal with only 2.7 seconds on the clock.

The teams alternated goals four times in the second half, with Amherst's lead hovering between three and four until the Jumbos made things interesting at 11-9 with 1:10 to play. The game's most significant stretch of time came when Amherst was whistled for a yellow card with 14:52 remaining in the game. Tufts scored a quick goal to make it a 9-6 game, but Amherst controlled possession for the next two and a half minutes despite being down a player. As soon as the Jeffs were at even strength, Horwitz stormed to the cage and gave her team a 10-6 lead.

Egan scored with 1:57 remaining and then assisted Emily Johnson '10 (Yarmouth, ME) 47 seconds later to cut the deficit to two goals, but the score would stand at 11-9. Tufts held a 22-18 advantage in shots and a 17-14 edge in ground balls, while Amherst was a perfect 14 for 14 on clear attempts.

Scheld caused four turnovers and picked up three ground balls, both of which were team highs for Amherst. Wyatt Davis '13 (Concord, MA) scooped up a pair of ground balls and won five draw controls for the Jeffs. Lily Colahan '11 (Rye, NY) had four ground balls and three caused turnovers for Tufts, Steph Perez '12 (East Providence, RI) had five draw controls, and Kelly Cakert '12 (Sudbury, MA) caused four turnovers.


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