Smith Downs Lasell in ECAC Semifinal Action

Norton, Mass. The third seeded Smith College Pioneers earned a spot in the ECAC New England Region championship game by defeating the second seeded Lasell College Lasers, 22-18 at Wheaton College.

Becky Bracken (Barrington, R.I. ) scored nine goals and handed out a pair of assists to lead Smith, who also got five goals from Meaghan Fileti (P alos Verdes Estates, Calif. ) and four goals from Mckenzie Hessel (Portland, Ore.). Bracken also led the Pioneers snaring 14 draw controls and collecting six groundballs.

Ashley Slattery (Weymouth, Mass.) scored a team-high nine goals for Lasell who got four goals and four assists from Britney Wuorio (Bolton, Mass.) and three goals from Caitlyn Brecher (Cheshire, Conn.). Slattery also posted team-highs in draw controls with 10 and groundballs with six for the Lasers. Smith improved to 10-8 on the season, while Lasell wraps up their year at 15-4.

Smith opened the contest with a pair of early goals, leading 2-0 3:28 into the game. Lasell answered with a pair of goals to draw even at 2-2 with just under five minutes gone. The Pioneers scored five of the next six goals, including four by Bracken to take a 7-3 edge with 17:32 left in the opening half.

Smith outscored the Lasers 6-3 over the remainder of the half, taking a 13-6 edge into the break. Bracken scored six goals in the opening period to lead Smith, while Slattery led Lasell with three markers.

Smith pushed their lead to 14-6 just 21 seconds into the second half when Bracken netted her seventh goal of the game, but Lasell would battle back. The Lasers scored six of the next seven goals, trimming the Pioneers lead to 15-12 with 17:30 remaining in the contest. Bracken tallied her final two goals of the day to key a 3-1 run, giving Smith an 18-13 lead with 13:32 on the clock.

Lasell would make a final push, trimming the deficit to 19-16 with 4:22 remaining, but were unable to draw any closer, and Smith earned to 22-18 win. Alina Pechacek (Andover, Mass.) finished with four saves while earning the victory for Smith, while Alexa Katsigianis (Amherst, N.H.)took the loss for Lasell, despite stopping 14 shots on the day.

Smith will face off against the top-seeded Lyons of Wheaton College Sunday May 13th at 1:00 pm in the ECAC New England Championship.


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