BOSTON, Mass. – The Emmanuel College Women's Lacrosse Team rolled to its second consecutive Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) win, defeating Johnson & Wales University, 16-8. The conference match up was Emmanuel's home opener and was played on a cold Tuesday night under the lights at Roberto Clemente Field. The Saints scored their first goal just two minutes into the action and never trailed, improving to 2-0 on the season. The loss dropped the first-year Wildcats to 4-3 overall and 1-2 in GNAC play.
Sophomores Kristen Tuleja (Mansfield, Mass.) and Sarah Higgins (Groveland, Mass.) led the Saints with four goals apiece. Tuleja would finish with eight points on the night, after also dishing out four assists for EC. Junior captain Sarah Wootten (Berlin, Mass.) and rookie attack Emily Baker (Stratham, N.H.) netted two goals each and Baker tallied a team-high 3 groundballs in the win.
JWU sophomore Cassie Collins (Oswego, N.Y.) led the Wildcats with two goals, while freshman defender Julia Cramarossa (Churchville, Pa.) recorded a team-high three groundballs and Lydia Knapp (Glens Falls, N.Y.) won a game-high six draw controls.
Freshman attack Amanda Cook (Saco, Me.) netted the Saints' opening goal at 28:01 off a pass from Tuleja and JWU quickly tied the contest less than a minute later on an unassisted Collins' score. Junior captain Alexia Basile (West Hartford, Conn.) would then hit the go-ahead marker at 20:26 and the Saints never looked back, leading throughout.
Emmanuel took a four-goal lead following a JWU penalty with less than three minutes to play in the first half. Baker's man-up tally put the Saints up, 8-4. The hosts would then score twice more before the break, with Tuleja connecting on a free position attempt at 2:20 and then receiving an assist from Monica Burdick (Stonington, Conn.) with just 16 seconds left on the clock. Emmanuel held a 10-4 lead at halftime and outshot JWU, 17-13 in the opening frame.
The second half saw the Saints score twice in the first five minutes with goals coming via Wootten and Tuleja. JWU then went on a 4-1 run, which included goals from Toni-Anne Mule (Melville, N.Y.), Brittany Manfro (Yorktown Heights, N.Y.), Collins and Natalie DiCocco (Media, Pa.) to cut the deficit to 13-8 with 6:28 to go in the game.
Tough Emmanuel defense would hold the Wildcats scoreless over the final six minutes, as the hosts tacked on three more tallies, including two by Higgins and a final score by Rooney with 2:27 left.
Sophomore goalie Lauren White (Lynnfield, Mass.) earned the win in net for the Saints, improving to 2-0 on the season. White went the distance, making 13 saves off of her 21 shots faced. Junior goalie Genevieve Giampietro (Meriden, Conn.) took the loss for JWU, but made 8 stops in the effort.
Emmanuel will play twice this weekend, as the Saints travel to Anna Maria College for GNAC action on Friday at 4:00 PM and to Regis College for a non-conference game on Saturday at 3:30 PM. JWU will host Rhode Island College this Thursday in a 4:00 PM start.