DANBURY, CT – Senior midfielder Destinee Carey (New Milford, CT) notched a game-high seven points (four goals and three assists), while rookie attacker Brooke Baldelli (New Fairfield, CT) chipped in with five goals and one assist to lead the fourth-seeded Western Connecticut State University women's lacrosse to a 17-9 victory over visiting fifth-seeded UMass-Dartmouth on Tuesday night at The Westside Athletic Complex. With the win, the Colonials advanced to the Little East Conference Tournament Semifinals where they will meet top-seeded host Eastern Connecticut on Thursday at 4:30 p.m.
"We wanted it. We didn't give up. We knew exactly what was necessary to do in order to be successful. We weren't as powerful in the first half as we hoped, but we pulled it together in the second. We're focused and thrilled to move forward," said WestConn head coach Jennifer Thomas following the exhilarating win.
For the game, the Colonials outshot the Corsairs, 36-26, while holding a commanding 18-10 edge in draw controls. Junior midfielder and reigning Conference Player of the Week Olivia Kosilla (Ellington, CT) added four goals and one helper, while sophomore midfielder Lauren Bradshaw (Bethel, CT) netted a hat trick for the hosts.
Junior midfielder Leah Douty (Framingham, MA) paced the Corsairs with three goals, while senior attacker Catrina Longo (Billerica, MA) finished with a goal and two assists.
The visitors jumped out to an early 2-0 lead before WestConn answered with a pair, knotting the score at 2-2 early in the contest. Carey netted her second goal of the game, giving the hosts a 5-3 lead midway through the opening half. Baldelli tallied her 50th goal of the season just before the break, giving WestConn a 6-5 advantage heading into the second period.
UMD began the second stanza as they did the first with two quick strikes, regaining a 7-6 lead. However, the Colonials stormed back with an eight-goal spurt. Baldelli ignited the barrage with an unassisted twine-striker before she capped the furious outburst with her 52nd goal of the year, extending the WestConn lead to 14-7 as they cruised the rest of the way.
Senior netminder Missy O'Donnell (Bridgeport, CT) was stellar in goal, finishing with 10 saves and improving to 8-9 overall for the Colonials, while sophomore goalie Kaitlyn Burchill (Bridgewater, MA) turned aside 15 shots for the Corsairs and rounded out the season at 8-9.
WestConn will be seeking to avenge the 13-8 regular season loss they suffered at the hands of the Warriors on Thursday.