Women's lacrosse opens CAA play with win over William & Mary
Hofstra women’s lacrosse won its Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) opener against the College of William & Mary Tribe 14-11 Friday at James M. Shuart Stadium. The Pride trailed 10-8 five minutes into the second half after the Tribe went on a 5-0 scoring run, but Hofstra outscored William & Mary 6-1 to secure the victory.
“I thought that was a really hard-fought game,” said head coach Shannon Smith. “[William & Mary] made us really fight until the end and really work hard to be able to win this game. Our conference is extremely tough, so it’s really important to get that first win.”
Pride goalkeeper Jess Smith stepped up in the second half. After a shaky first, where she recorded four saves and allowed eight goals, she saved seven shots and allowed just three to find the back of the cage in the second.
“I just think she calmed down and played with a lot more confidence,” Shannon Smith said. “I think that she was a little antsy in the first half.”
The Pride and Tribe went back and forth throughout the first 30 minutes, but the Pride allowed three goals at the end of the half to make it 8-8.
Hofstra allowed a couple more goals in the beginning of the second before changing up the defense.
“We went a little bit into zone [defense],” Shannon Smith said. “We were making William & Mary play a little bit quicker than what they wanted.”
The Pride pulled within one at 10-9 after Mary Kate Gerety scored her seventh goal of the season. Alexa Mattera’s third goal of the game tied the score at 10. The Tribe went up 11-10 with 13:39 left after Belle Martire’s fourth goal before the Pride scored the next four goals to win the game.
“We were really resilient,” Shannon Smith said. “Our team continued to fight. I thought our team didn’t panic and we handled the adversity.”
Lauren Russell and Martire led the Tribe with four goals. Grace Ahonen added three.
Six players on the Pride scored with Alyssa Parrella leading the team with five goals.
“[Parrella] is the best player in the conference,” Smith said. “She’s playing like that for us.”
Parrella also recorded her 64th career assist Friday, moving herself to a tie for No. 4 in Hofstra history with Kristin Marshall.
Mattera aided the Pride attack with four goals of her own.
“It was really nice to see [Mattera] be able to get it back on the scoreboard. She was shooting the ball well tonight,” Shannon Smith added.
The Pride are 1-0 in CAA play and 8-4 overall. William & Mary starts conference play 0-1 and drops to 5-5 on the year.
The Pride will go to North Carolina to face the Elon Phoenix Sunday, April 7, at 1:00 p.m.
Photo Courtesy of Hofstra Athletics