Corvino leads one of the top defensive units in the NE10 as one of two All-Americans in the group. (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)
Fourth-Seeded Skyhawks and fifth-seeded Setters battle for second time in five days for NE10 Quarterfinal
EASTON, Mass. (May 2, 2017) – For the second time in five days, with the stakes just a little bit higher, fourth-seeded Stonehill College, ranked 17th in this week's Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) Division II poll, hosts fifth-seeded Pace University, ranked 14th in the IWLCA poll and No. 19 in this week's Nike/US Lacrosse Magazine Division II poll, for quarterfinal round action of the 2017 Northeast-10 Conference women's lacrosse tournament on Timothy J. Coughlin '80 Memorial Field at W.B. Mason Stadium on Wednesday night.
Admission for the NE10 Tournament matchup will be $6.00 for adults, $4.00 for children and senior citizens and $1.00 for students from participating teams with valid ID. The first 200 Stonehill students will be admitted free of charge, courtesy of the Stonehill Spirit Committee and Student Affairs, with their Hill Card. The game will also be webcast live via stonehillskyhawks.tv and Facebook Live at facebook.com/stonehillskyhawks, with live stats available at stonehillskyhawks.com.
Stonehill (11-6, 10-3 NE10), the only program to appear in all 19 NE10 Tournaments in Conference history, are winners of a Conference-high nine championships, having reached at least the semifinal round 17 times with 11 title game appearances. The NE10 Tournament returns to W.B. Mason Stadium after a one-year hiatus when the Skyhawks were seeded sixth and were edged at third-seeded Bentley University in last year's quarterfinal round, 9-8.
Pace (11-5, 9-4 NE10), also ranked eighth in last week's NCAA Division II North Regional rankings, is in the NE10 Tournament for the second straight year in just its third varsity season. The Setters were seeded eighth a year ago and fell to top-seeded and No. 1-ranked Adelphi University in last year's quarterfinal round in the first postseason game in program history.
Shannahan has had a breakout junior season for the Skyhawks as a two-way player on defense and attack. (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)
Wednesday night's quarterfinal matchup will mark the second encounter between Stonehill and Pace in five days. The Skyhawks clinched home field advantage for the quarterfinal with an 18-9 triumph in the regular season finale for both at W.B. Mason Stadium on Friday night. Freshman Jennifer Wheaton (Dartmouth, Massachusetts/Dartmouth) led Stonehill with a season-high six goals, while senior Elizabeth Vetter (Great River, New York/East Islip) added four as the Skyhawks closed out the regular season with their seventh-straight NE10 win. Junior Abby Haimson (Montville, New Jersey/Montville) scored four of Pace's nine goals on the night. Stonehill has won each of the first three meetings between the two programs, including a 2-0 record at W.B. Mason Stadium after Friday night's result, as the teams will meet in postseason play for the first time.
Stonehill enters the postseason having posted a 7-2 mark in the month of April following a 4-4 March, with both losses coming to nationally-ranked opponents at Le Moyne College (10-6) and home to NYIT (13-12 OT). The Skyhawks boast one of the top defensive units in the NE10 with a 9.07 team goals against average that ranks third in the Conference (21st nationally), while also ranking second in the NE10 with 155 caused turnovers and totaling a Conference-high 324 ground balls.
The defensive unit is spearheaded by a pair of All-Americans in senior co-captain Cara Corvino (Dorset, Vermont/Burr and Burton Academy) and junior Kelly Healey (Westwood, Massachusetts/Westwood), as well as senior co-captain Erika Isner (Farmington, Connecticut/Farmington) and classmate Michaela Brown (Pleasantville, New York/The Ursuline School). Corvino leads the team and ranks fifth in the NE10 with 31 caused turnovers, while Isner is 13th in the Conference with 20, while ranking 11th with 38 ground balls.
Freshman Bailey Grant (Chelmsford, Massachusetts/Chelmsford) has emerged as Stonehill's starting goalkeeper in her first collegiate season, having posted an 8.96 goals against average (3rd NE10/15th nationally) and .426 save percentage with 6.0 saves per game in 649:43 over 12 games played. She has started the last ten contests with the Skyhawks posting a 7-3 record since becoming the starter.
Junior Taylor Shannahan (Mendham, New Jersey/Morris Catholic) and Vetter lead a strong midfield unit for Stonehill. Shannahan is second on the team with 22 caused turnovers (8th NE10) and leading the team with 60 ground balls (2nd), while ranking fourth on the team in scoring with 31 points, netting 20 goals to go with a team-high 11 assists. Vetter is the team's top scorer with 37 points and 34 goals to go with three assists, while collecting a team-high 38 draw controls, 32 ground balls and ten caused turnovers.
Vetter leads offensive attack from midfield with 34 goals, while also collecting a team-high 38 draws. (PHOTO BY Andrew Katsampes)
Senior Shannon Booth (Pearl River, New York/Nanuet) leads the attack unit with 34 points on 28 goals and six assists, while Wheaton and freshman classmates MacKenzie Pleshaw (Franklin, Massachusetts/Franklin) and Kaitlin Healey (Westwood, Massachusetts/Westwood) have made an immediate impact for Stonehill. Wheaton has also totaled 34 points with 30 goals and four assists, while adding a team-high 38 draw controls, while Pleshaw has added 28 goals and two assists for 30 points. Healey has chipped in 18 goals and three assists for 21 points, to go with 34 draws, 22 ground balls and 15 caused turnovers.
Pace enters the postseason aiming to bounce back from back to back losses for the first time all season, having dropped three of its last four in the regular season overall. The Setters rank second in the NE10 with 13.9 goals per game and fourth with a 9.50 team goals against average and 130 caused turnovers.
Haimson is second in the NE10 with 73 points and 58 goals, dishing out 15 assists, while junior Casey Gelderman (Farmingville, New York/Sachem East) is third among NE10 goal scorers with 57, while adding two assists for 59 points (14th), a Conference leading 62 ground balls and team-high 61 draw controls (6th NE10) and 22 caused turnovers (8th). Sophomore Courtney Pabst (East Patchogue, New York/Bellport) leads the Setters with 24 assists (5th) to go with 24 goals for 53 points, while collecting 42 draws and 24 ground balls.
Junior goalkeeper Alissa Silvestri (Congers, New York/Clarkstown North) backbones the Pace defense, having started all 16 games and posting a 9.50 goals against average (4th NE10) and .451 save percentage (7th) with 7.2 saves per game (10th) in 884:11 (7th).
The winner of Wednesday night's quarterfinal matchup will advance to this weekend's NE10 Championship round on Saturday and Sunday, which will be hosted by the top remaining seed after the quarters, to face the winner of tomorrow's matchup between top-seeded and top-ranked Le Moyne College (16-0, 13-0 NE-10) and eighth-seeded Franklin Pierce University (7-8, 5-8 NE-10). The semifinals will be played on Saturday, May 6, with the NE10 Championship game on Sunday.
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2017 Northeast-10 Conference
Women's Lacrosse Tournament
Wednesday, May 3 (at higher seeds)
#8 Franklin Pierce (7-8, 5-8 NE10) at #1 Le Moyne (16-0, 13-0 NE10), 2 p.m.
#5 Pace (11-5, 9-4 NE10) at #4 Stonehill (11-6, 10-3 NE10), 7 p.m.
#7 Bentley (8-8, 7-6 NE10) at #2 Adelphi (15-1, 12-1 NE10), 7 p.m.
#6 Assumption (9-7, 7-6 NE10) at #3 New Haven (13-3, 11-2 NE10), 7 p.m.
SemifinalsSaturday, May 6 (at highest remaining seed)
FPU/LEM winner vs. PAC/STO winner, TBA
BEN/ADE winner vs. ASM/UNH winner, TBA
Sunday, May 7
Semifinal winners, 1 p.m.