Fairfield Opens Season with Victory at Monmouth

WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J.- Monmouth University's (0-1) women's lacrosse team opened up the season a 14-7 setback to Fairfield University (1-0) on Saturday afternoon on Kessler Field.

After leading 7-2 at halftime, the Stags opened up a 12-2 lead in the second half before Monmouth rallied to outscore Fairfield 5-2 in the final 10 minutes of the game.

Junior attacker Addie Reilly led all scorers with a five-goal, four point outburst. Monmouth goalie Katie Donohoe (Peterborough, Ontario/Holy Cross Secondary) made nine saves as the Hawks were outshot 30-17 in the contest.

The Stags opened up their five-goal halftime lead by scoring five consecutive goals to start the second frame, which was eventually stopped by Kaleigh Gibbons' (Candia, N.H./Central/Robert Morris) goal with 13:19 left in regulation. During that span, Reilly scored three times, with Fairfield's Melanie Raso and Amanda Best scoring the other two markers. Senior Sam Savona (Jackson, N.J./Jackson Liberty/FDU) and junior Cassie Campasano (West Islip, N.Y./West Islip/Jacksonville) added consecutive goals to cut the Fairfield lead to 12-5. Each team scored twice in the final 6:18 to end the scoring at 14-7.

Fairfield took 3-0 lead over the first eight minutes of the game before sophomore Emily Barbieri (Parsippany, N.J./DePaul Catholic) netted her first collegiate goal at the 19:24 mark. Fairfield's lead pushed to 6-1 after a string of goals from 13:41 to 4:42 before Barbieri struck for the second time in the match to cut the lead to 6-2 with 26 seconds left. Reilly added a goal with seven seconds left to give her squad a 7-2 cushion going into the break.

Stathius had a pair of assists and led the Hawks in ground balls (4), draw controls (3) and caused turnovers with two. Sophomore Meaghan Hess (Lake Stevens, Wash./Lake Stevens High School) finished with a goal and an assist while Savona had two points on a goal and an assist.

Reilly led all scorers with nine points, while Raso added five points on three goals and two assists. Keenan and backup goalie Chelsey Sidaras combined for six saves.

Monmouth controlled the draw to the tune of 13-10 but committed 19 turnovers compared with Fairfield's 12. Fairfield leads the all-time series 6-5, including winning the last three match-ups.

The Hawks are back in action next Friday, when they host Delaware at 3:00 p.m.

* * * *

For the fifth time in as many seasons, Fairfield University opened the season with a win over Monmouth University. The Stags defeated the Hawks 14-7 in a non-conference game in West Long Branch, N.J.

Addie Reilly, in her first action in nearly a year after an ACL injury, led the Stags with nine points on five goals and four assists. Melanie Raso had a hat trick and two assists as six Stags tallied goals in the victory.

Katie Keenan backstopped a strong Fairfield defensive effort, making five saves in her 53:42 of action. Chelsey Sidaras made her collegiate debut, minding the net for the final 6:18 and made a save against two goals allowed.

Melanie Raso scored the Stags first goal of the year 3:48 into the game as she netted a pass from Chloe Mangan. Jamie Leone (22:50) and Reilly (22:04) scored unassisted goals to push the advantage to 3-0, before Emily Barbieri found the back of the net for Monmouth with 19:24 to play before intermission.

Raso answered with her second 5:33 later to start another Stags 3-0 run, all assisted by Reilly. Reilly fed Caitlin Townsend with 6:25 to play before the half and then setup Leone at the 4:42 mark for a 6-1 Fairfield advantage. Barbieri scored her second of the game with 26 ticks before the intermission to end the run, but Reilly netted a pass from Raso with seven seconds left to give Fairfield a 7-2 halftime edge.

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