Rensselaer Defense Shuts Down St. Lawrence

TROY, N.Y. Behind a game-high three goals from Whitney Kukol and a solid six-save effort between the pipes by Allie Arnal, Rensselaer rolled to a 11-1 win over St. Lawrence in Liberty League action on Friday. With the victory, the Engineers move to 7-4 overall and 3-2 in conference play, while the Saints slip to 5-9 with a 3-4 league mark.

Kukol (Johnson City, NY/Johnson City) proved to be the difference maker in the opening half, notching a hat trick to give the homestanding Engineers a 6-0 advantage. Kukol got things going just 1:03 into the contest after she capitalized on a free position attempt following a Saints' yellow card.

RPI added to its lead with 16:48 left on the clock as rookie Meg Colitz (East Greenwich, RI/LaSalle Academy) caught a feed from sophomore Alissa Peterson (Gaithersburg, MD/Quince Orchard) and fired a shot into the right hand corner past Saints' keeper Anna Marchand (Concord, MA/Middlesex School).

Senior Stephanie Caouette (Wyantskill, NY/Columbia) continued the charge just over a minute later and Kukol added back-to-back shots for a 5-0 lead with 2:53 to go. The Engineers closed out the half as sophomore Shannon Maguire (Randolph, NJ/Randolph) fired RPI's third free position tally past Marchand with 10 seconds left.

Arnal (Lakewood, NY/Phillips Exeter Academy) proved outstanding through the first 30 minutes, stopping four Saints shots. Several of her saves came at point blank range, including a shot at the 9:13 mark by junior Paige Powell (Tucson, AZ/Wilton), who came in and fired a low shot that Arnal deflected out of play near the post.

Rensselaer continued to dominate in the second stanza as it scored two goals within the first four minutes of the frame, including the first of the game for senior Afton Marshall (Windham, NH/Salem) off a feed from Caouette. Marshall came up big once again, assisting on another goal and scoring her second of the contest with 19:51 on the clock to make a 10-0 game and enforce the 10-goal running clock.

St. Lawrence, which had five shots in the second stanza, made one count at 11:24 as sophomore Brigid Hurley (Penfield, NY/Penfield) finally got the visitors on the board with a point-blank score over the head of Arnal at the right post, but RPI's Michelle Denny (Lusby, MD/Patuxent) scored with 2:03 on the clock to wrap up the victory.

In addition to Kukol, Marshall added two goals and an assist for the Engineers. Maguire added two tallies, while Caouette and Peterson each had a goal and an assist. For St. Lawrence, Marchand made six saves.

RPI is back in action on Saturday with Senior Day against Clarkson at Renwyck Field (2:00 pm). The Saints head to Poughkeepsie to face Vassar (2:00 pm).


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