Hat Trick Trifecta Pushes Women’s Lacrosse Past St. Francis (Pa.)

Ajan Caneda, Senior Writer

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 Hat tricks from Sophie Kleinert ’14, Katelyn Miller ’14, and Sam Rickels ’16 boosted the women’s lacrosse team to a 13-8 victory over St. Francis (Pa.) on a rainy night in Loretto, Pa. This win on April 15 gave the Bison its fourth victory in five games.

“I think it was really important for us to get a win, especially because we have such a big game on Saturday. A lot of different people contributed and it was a great test for us going into the weekend,” Kleinert said.

The Orange and Blue used their 28-14 shot advantage to put pressure on the Red Flash. Rickels scored the first two goals of the game with her second goal coming off of an Emily Kookogey ’15 assist. St. Francis registered three goals in the first half, but the Bison ended the half with four unanswered goals, including one from Claire Switala ’15 who scored with a second to spare. Switala recorded two goals in the game.

Kleinert registered the first goal of the second half, but the Red Flash responded with four straight goals to pull within one goal of the Bison. The Orange and Blue’s highest season scorers countered St. Francis’s run, as Miller and Kookogey each posted two goals to give the Bison a 12-7 lead and put the game out of reach. Kleinert added one last goal with 3:42 left in the game to cap the victory.

In addition to her hat trick, Rickels also registered three draw controls. Goalie Elizabeth Duswalt ’17 blocked three shots in the game.

“The win against St. Francis felt great due to the fact that everyone stepped up and contributed. Everyone on our team, defensively as well as offensively, brings something different to the table,” Rickels said. “Because everyone is so unique in their style of play it allows us to be successful in many different aspects.”

The team held a 24-12 edge in ground balls to go along with their shot advantage. Several players contributed to the strong defensive effort as Elizabeth Gauf ’14 recovered three ground balls and forced three turnovers. Kerri Althouse ’14 and Annie Gilbertson ’17 caused two turnovers each. Althouse and Lucia Smircich ’17 added three ground balls apiece.

“It’s always great to see everyone contribute both defensively and offensively, as it really builds team unity,” Miller said. “We have so many talented players on this team, and on a night like last night, it really showed how so many of us can contribute to a win.”

Miller’s 100th career caused turnover made her only the second player in program history to reach that feat. She is now one point behind second place in career points.

“The career accolades are exciting but it is something I try not to think about. I just go out every day with the desire to leave everything on the field but a lot is dependent on my teammates because they have given me the confidence to succeed,” Miller said. “We have come a long way in these four years, and our dream as a team would be to make it to the tournament this year.”

The Orange and Blue conclude their regular season at Boston University tomorrow at 1 p.m. A win and Holy Cross loss are needed to clinch a berth in the Patriot League Tournament.

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