Farrugia Notches 4G/3A as Niagara Outguns St. Bonaventure

NIAGARA UNIV., N.Y. Carrie-Jo Farrugia finished with four goals and three assists for a career-high of seven points on Thursday afternoon, as Niagara climbed back to the .500 mark on the season with a 18-13 victory over St. Bonaventure at Niagara Field.

Niagara, now 3-3 overall, put together its best offensive showing to date with season-highs in goals (18) and assists (10). Farrugia led a slew of nine players in the scoring column-including four players with at least three points in the game. Danielle Maio (one goals; three assists) and Brittany Delano (three goals; one assist) each contributed four points on the game, while Maria Battista (three goals) and Erin Patenaude (two goals; one assist) also added to the scoreboard.

All three Purple Eagle goalies saw action today, combining for 13 saves, including five from senior Paige Sasser who played a majority of the contest (23 minutes). Amanda Yavorek made her first start of the season, making three saves in 21 minutes, while Andrea Francisco finished the contest with one save in the final 15 minutes.

"We were very pleased with the overall effort. We were able to spread the ball offensively and we were happy with the number of turnovers we were able to cause," head coach Wendy Stone said. "We look forward to playing Albany on Monday, and we hope to improve our performance next time out."

The opening 12 minutes of the contest was evenly matched as the teams traded goals with Delano drawing first blood. Mikayla Place answered off an unassisted goal, but Patenaude and Battista gave NU a two-goal lead off their first scores of the game. Patenaude would add her second after Scarlet Jaworski got one past Yavorek, but Erica Knaub would slice the Purple Eagles' lead with 18:50 remaining in the half.

Niagara would then seize control of the game, going on its largest run of the season with eight unanswered goals piggy-backed by Farrugia's four tallies to send the contest into the first break with the Purple Eagles holding a commanding 12-3 lead.

St. Bonaventure seemed to have found its legs at the start of the second half, scoring the first three goals courtesy of LeighAnn Stauffer, Jaworski and Madison Appel. Niagara would counter with a pair via a man-up tally from Kristen Winter and a free position goal from Kayla Smith, but once again the same trio of Bonnies who started the scoring in the half found the back of the net to make it just a five-goal deficit with 11:42 left in regulation.

Despite St. Bonaventure hanging tough in the final 10 minutes, the Purple Eagles were able to answer to disallow the comeback. Delano stopped Bonnies second three-goal run with her third goal of the afternoon, while Battista and Smith capped off the scoring column for the Purple Eagles to secure the 18-13 victory.

For the game, Niagara dominated nearly every facet of the score sheet. Niagara outshot St. Bonaventure, 43-25, grabbed a 34-33 advantage in ground balls and forced 16 St. Bonaventure turnovers compared to just 11 from the Bonnies. The Purple Eagles also controlled the circle with a 16-14 edge on the draw.

Niagara returns to Niagara Field on Monday, March 24 when the Purple Eagles host Albany at 2:00 p.m.

* * * *

NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. A second half rally fell short as the St. Bonaventure's women's lacrosse team lost at Niagara on Thursday afternoon, 18-13, at Niagara Field.

The Bonnies trailed 4-3 early in the contest when the Purple Eagles took control, scoring eight unanswered goals to take a 12-3 lead into halftime.

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