Leland paces Wildcats with seven points
Durham, N.H. - Senior captains Katie Leland (Timonium, Md.) and Kristin Blanchette (Sudbury, Mass.) recorded seven and six points, respectively, to lead the University of New Hampshire women's lacrosse team to Saturday afternoon's 15-10 America East conference victory against the University at Albany at Memorial Field.
UNH extended its winning streak to four games to improve to 5-4 overall and 1-0 in America East. Albany lost its third consecutive game and is now 5-5 overall, 0-2 in the league.
Leland, who recorded a season-high eight points in Wednesday's win vs. Brown University, finished with four goals and three assists. Blanchette matched her career highs in both assists (three) and points (six) and scored three goals for the third consecutive game. Ashley Durepo (Concord, N.H.), Moira Talbot (Marblehead, Mass.), Sarah Von Bargen (East Setauket, N.Y.) and Alexa Webster (Aurora, Colo.) all scored two goals. Ashley Milley (Sudbury, Mass.) made 13 saves, matching her personal best from twice earlier this season.
Albany was led offensively by Sarah Spillett (four goals, one assist), Julie Bush (three goals) and Krissy Rajczak (three goals). Starting goalie Jen Daly played the first half and made seven saves in the loss. Katie Neer went the distance in the second half and was credited with one save.
Lelenad scored two goals - both set up by her fellow senior captain - and Blanchette tallied her first goal of the game at 17:49 to propel the Wildcats to a 6-0 first-half lead. Albany began the game with a patient attack before Leland opened the scoring at 9:44. Durepo netted back-to-back goals nine seconds apart to extend the advantage to 3-0 at 11:56.
Albany called time out at that point, but Leland netted the second of her four goals at 14:08 and Webster netted a free-position goal at 16:05 to give the 'Cats a five-goal lead.
Following Blanchette's tally, Rajczak put Albany in the scoring column at 22:31. UNH immediately regained momentum, however, when Von Bargen scored off a Blanchette pass just 38 seconds later. Leland then scored at 25:18 and set up a goal by Talbot at 26:04 to build a 9-1 lead.
Rajczak struck again at 29:07, but Leland was awarded a free position with eight seconds remaining in the half and scored two seconds later to give the Wildcats a 10-2 halftime advantage.
The Great Danes rallied within 10-4 early in the second half on goals by Spillett and Bush at 30:50 and 33:29, respectively. New Hampshire reestablished an eight-goal advantage when Blanchette and Talbot scored 73 seconds apart at 40:43 and 41:56.
Albany once again trimmed the deficit to six goals, 12-6, on goals 39 seconds apart by Rajczk and Bush. UNH called timeout at that juncture (43:04) and increased the lead to 13-6 when Leland set up Webster at 44:33.
The Great Danes surged closer when Spillett and Bush scored ina 50-second span - at 52:02 and 52:52, respectively. Blanchette recorded her sixth point of the game with a free position goal at 53:39 to give the Wildcats a 14-8 edge.
Spillett netted her third goal of the game to lift Albany within 14-9 at 57:00. The Great Danes apparently scored again with 2:04 to play, but the goal was disallowed because of an illegal stick pocket. UNH went on the counterattack and Von Bargen's second goal of the game gave the 'Cats a 15-9 lead at 58:38. Spillett's goal with 19 seconds remaining closed the scoring.
New Hampshire returns to action April 5 (3:30 p.m.) at the University of Vermont. The Wildcats begin a four-game homestand April 8 (12 p.m.) vs. UMBC.