Wagner Drops Hard-Fought Battle to Sacred Heart

Staten Island, NY Wagner College built a 7-5 halftime lead and held an 8-6 advantage well into the second half before Sacred Heart went on a 6-2 run over the final 18:10 to pull out a 12-10 Northeast Conference (NEC) win.

With the loss, Wagner falls to 5-5 on the season, 0-2 in the NEC while the Pioneers improve to 2-5, 2-0 in the NEC.

The Seahawks took that 8-6 lead on an unassisted goal by senior midfielder Melanie Garces (San Diego, CA/ Westview) with 19:13 remaining in the game. The Pioneers then responded with three consecutive goals in taking a 9-8 lead. Kaitlin Rochler's unassisted tally at the 18:10 mark started the Sacred Heart spree, drawing the Pioneers to within 8-7. With 16:16 to go, Kelsey Russo buried a free position shot to know the game at 8-8. The teams then played 7:17 of scoreless lacrosse until Alyssa Davis sank an unassisted marker with 10:53 left to put Sacred Heart on top 9-8.

Wagner then tied the game at 9-9 on a man-up goal by senior attacker Carolyn Clark (Syracuse NY/ Westhill). The Pioneers then responded with another three-goal run as Russo, Rochler and Taylor Babin found the back of the net, the latter coming with 2:31 to which put Sacred Heart in front 12-9. Clark then got one back with unassisted goal at the 1:31 mark but that was the final goal Wagner was able to muster as the Pioneers held on for the 12-10 win.

Clark had a hat trick for the Seahawks while sophomore midfielder Michela Galante (Maplewood, NJ/ Maplewood) and senior midfielder Denieda McCullough (Freeport, NY/ Freeport) added two goals apiece. Chipping in with one goal each were senior midfielders Garces and Lauren Petrik (Baldwinsville, NY/ C.W. Baker) along with freshman midfielder Jessica Mills (Vernon Township, NJ/ Vernon Township)

Junior attacker Erika Bulken (Baldwinsville, NY/ C.W. Baker), the nation's leader in draw controls, had a team-high four while sophomore defender Caitlan Daly (Ridgewood, NJ/ Ridgewood) played a solid all-around game, pacing the Seahawks with three caused turnovers and three ground balls.

For Sacred Heart, Russo had four goals to lead all scorers while Rochler and Aurelie Plujmakers had two goals piece.

Sacred Heart held a 29-21 edge in ground balls while draw controls were 11-11. The Pioneers were particularly effective on free-position shots, converting 4 of 7 FPOs while Wagner was 0 of 2 on FPOs. Wagner was hampered by committing 33 fouls to Sacred Heart's 11.

Kelly Keenan had six saves in goal for the Pioneers while freshman Shannon Sweeney (Madison, NJ/ Madison) made 10 saves for the Seahawks.

The Seahawks are next in action on Friday, March 30 when the Seahawks travel to Bryant for a 7:00 pm start in the first of three consecutive road games.


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