The GW women’s lacrosse team used a 14-8 victory over Massachusetts Sunday to qualify for its first Atlantic 10 tournament in program history. The Colonials, who are 5-1 in A-10 play, are one of the top four teams in the regular-season standings.
“I am extremely proud,” head coach Chrissy Lombard said. “We did what we had to do on the road after an eight-hour bus ride.”
“It’s incredible after being 4-12 our first season to be 13-3 and in the tournament – it’s so exciting,” senior Erin Berry added.
GW (13-3) will travel to play Temple (8-6, 4-1 A-10) next Sunday at 1 p.m. The Colonials will look to secure one of the top two seeds in the tournament.
“It’s important because we want to get the match-up we need in the tournament,” Lombard said. “We also want to continue the winning streak we are on.” The A-10 tournament will be hosted by the University of Richmond from May 6-7. The winner will receive one of the 16 bids to the NCAA Tournament.
Friday, the Colonials scorched St. Mary’s (Calif.) 19-6 on Senior Day at the Mount Vernon Athletic Complex. A pre-game ceremony honored the team’s nine seniors.
On, Sunday the Colonials traveled to Massachusetts (5-10, 1-4 A-10) and used a late second-half run to knock off the Minutewomen. GW led 9-8 with just under 10 minutes remaining before sophomore Laura Hostetler netted two quick goals to increase the lead to 11-8.
“They were very important,” Lombard said. “She protected her stick and was very patient. After she scored the goals I think we knew things were going our way.”
With the Minuetwomen trying to force turnovers, the Colonials scored three times in the final minute to further increase their margin of victory to six. Senior Heidi Mayer scored two goals in that final minute.
“We got our second burst of confidence late,” Berry said.
Hostetler finished the game with four goals and three assists. Seniors Jenny Heisler and Jamie Lee both had two goals in the contest. Freshman goalkeeper Caitlin Garman recorded eight saves in the victory, a new career high.
Friday’s victory over St. Mary’s (1-12) was bittersweet for the Colonials. Seniors Jenny Heisler, Jamie Lee, Lia Harris, Meghan McDonough, Deena Vezo, Nicole Cozzolino, Mary Monaghan and Erin Berry were all honored as the first full graduating class in the program’s four-year history.
In 2002, the team’s first season as a Division I sport, the Colonials had 13 freshmen and finished the season 4-12. Former players Lauren Kornreich – who is also a Hatchet staff writer – Karleen Krenicky and Becca Valle attended Friday’s game to celebrate the team’s achievements.
The outcome of Sunday’s game was never in doubt, as the Colonials jumped out to an early 4-2 lead before scoring four consecutive goals to close out the first half up 8-2. The offense did struggle at times during the first half as Hostetler received two yellow cards during the first half leading to her removal from the game.
Without Hostetler, the Colonials turned to McDonough and Lee, who both scored three times in the contest. In the second half GW scored 11 more times to tie their season-high for goals with 19.
Junior Annie Howley and freshman Kristin Karsch both scored three times in the victory.