Saint Joseph's Halts Monmouth's Winning Streak

WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J.- Saint Joseph's University (3-3) handed Monmouth University (4-2) its first loss in four games with a 11-6 victory at Kessler Field on Sunday afternoon.

Saint Joe's scored six straight goals from the final 11 minutes of the first half to the opening 11 minutes of the second half to turn a two goal deficit to a four goal lead. Monmouth junior Sam Lillo (Short Hills, N.J./Milburn) tied a career high with three goals but it wasn't enough as 18 MU turnovers led to the team's second loss of the year.

Ahead by one to start the second half, SJU's Grace Dinn scored her second of three goals 3:07 into the second half which was followed by back to back Jen Peters' goals. Lillo stopped the 22-plus minute scoring drought after a feed from Monmouth senior Molly O'Brien (Kennett Square, Pa./Unionville) but Saint Joe's answered three minutes later to take a 9-5 lead. Lillo scored once more on a free position attempt and a pair of SJU goals ended the scoring at 11-6.

O'Brien got the scoring going at the 25:08 mark when she sent a ball into the middle on an intended pass but it was deflected past SJU goaltender Kaitlin LaBarbera. Saint Joe's answered less than a minute later on a Meghan McDevitt unassisted goal.

The next two MU goals came on free position shots by Tori Jordan (Sewell, N.J./Washington Twp.) and Lillo as Monmouth took a 3-2 lead with 12:23 to play. Thirty seconds later the Blue & White expanded its lead when junior Erica Abendschoen (West Caldwell, N.J./James Caldwell) corralled saved shot out of the air and deposited right back. Saint Joe's battled back though, scoring the final three goals of the first half to take a 5-4 lead into the break.

Kirby Mundorf had six saves while LaBarbera had nine in the win. St. Joe's outshot MU 26-21 while MU held an 11-8 advantage in draw controls. Lillo led MU with three goals while adding two ground balls, three draw controls and a caused turnover. Defender Gianna D'Urso (Fairfield, N.J./West Essex) had three caused turnovers and a groundball in the loss. Renae Hill (Ellicott City, Md./Centennial) had a career-high five ground balls in the loss.

Four Saint Joseph's players had three points, with Dinn and Peters each scoring three goals.

The Hawks are back in action on March 16th when they travel to Philadelphia to face La Salle.


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