– Sarah Von Bargen (East Setauket, N.Y.) netted three second-half goals to spark a University of New Hampshire rally, but the comeback effort fell short in UNH’s 11-8 America East conference loss to Stony Brook University in women’s lacrosse action Wednesday afternoon at Memorial Field.

UNH continued its pattern of alternating wins and losses for the sixth consecutive game to fall to 6-6 overall and 3-1 in America East. Stony Brook, the last remaining unbeaten team in conference play, won its seventh consecutive game to improve to 10-1, 3-0.

Trailing 8-1 at halftime, the Wildcats scored goals 52 seconds apart early in the second half to pull within 8-3 and force the visiting Seawolves to call a timeout. Michaela Hardy (Reading, Mass.; 2g, 1a) trimmed the deficit to six goals at 27:59 when her high shot from the top of the fan sailed into the net, then lifted the ‘Cats within 8-3 when her pass from the right wing found Beth Sabiston (Bay Shore, N.Y.) cutting down the middle and she scored.

UNH looked to continue momentum after winning the ensuing draw control but after two fruitless free-position shots and a succession of turnovers by both teams, SBU extended its lead to 9-3 at 23:55 on Jenna Celano’s third strike of the game, which was set up by Amy Taylor (2g, 3a).

SBU goalkeeper Jen Sandtorv (11 saves) denied Moira Talbot (Marblehead, Mass.) one minute later, but consecutive goals by Von Bargen lifted New Hampshire within 9-5. Her first tally, at 21:57, was on a free-position shot in which she took two quick steps from the left wing and fired a shot from the hip. Von Bargen then pulled the ‘Cats within four goals when she drove through the left side at 19:37. Bailley Mazur (Longmeadow, Mass.), who carried the ball through midfield and into the offensive zone before passing off to Von Bargen, was credited with her first career assist.

The combination of Taylor and Kaitlin Leggio (1g, 1a) gave the Seawolves a 10-5 advantage at 18:35. Leggio, angling in from the right wing, found Taylor cutting down the slot and she executed a shoot-and-catch for her 27th tally of the season.

UNH scored the next three goals to close within 10-8. Shaunna Kaplan (Framingham, Mass.) ignited the surge when she converted a pass from Alexa Webster (Aurora, Colo.; 2a) into a goal at 11:49. Von Bargen backed her way into the fan from the left post, then cut back to the post and scored near-side at 9:44 to make the score 10-7. Cutting down the middle, Hardy collected Webster’s pass from the right wing and scored to trim the margin to two goals and prompt SBU to call its second timeout of the half.

The Seawolves won the ensuing draw control but UNH goalie Ashley Milley (Sudbury, Mass.), who entered the game at the outset of the second half, made a save against Emily Jaissle to give possession back to the ‘Cats. New Hampshire was awarded a free position with 6:35 to play, but squandered the opportunity to pull within one goal by committing a turnover.

UNH had another free position at 5:05, but Ashley Durepo (Concord, N.H.), on a rush from the left wing, was stopped by Sandtorv.

Stony Brook went ahead 11-8 at 3:00 when Milley stopped the initial shot by Sam Strebel but Amy Hallion scooped the loose ball into the net from a scrum in front of the net.

The Wildcats called time out, then the visitors won the ensuing draw control. Strebel was denied by Milley with 2:04 remaining and Kelli LaPerch (Brewster, N.Y.; 5GB, 2CTO, 2DC) picked up the ground ball to give UNH possession. Kaplan’s shot sailed wide at 1:57 and Von Bargen’s shot was blocked seconds later, but the ‘Cats retained possession. A swarming Seawolves’ defense forced an errant pass out-of-bounds with 48 seconds to play. New Hampshire regained possession with 26 seconds on the clock but could not get a shot before time expired.

Milley finished with seven saves while starting goalie Natalie Jones (Penn Yan, N.Y.) was credited with five saves and charged with eight goals allowed, as well as the loss.

SBU took a 2-0 lead on goals by Leggio at 27:33 and Celano at 25:08. The Wildcats pulled within 2-1 at 23:12 when Talbot’s low shot bounced over Sandtorv and then behind the goalie before going into the net.

The Seawolves closed the half with six consecutive goals to build an 8-1 halftime advantage. Celano, on a cut from the middle to the right wing, fired a low shot into the net at 20:08, then Diana Caroleo scored a free-position goal at 12:43 when she drove from the right wing to her right and beat Jones short-side.

Katie Savino, with the assistance of Emily Jaissle, gave the visitors a 5-1 lead at 8:49. UNH called time out, but SBU won the draw control and Taylor scored 35 seconds later by slicing from the left wing to the middle and shooting inside the left post. Nearly five minutes later, Taylor found Caroleo streaking along the goal line on the left wing and she scored at 3:16. Strebel’s unassisted tally at 1:23 closed the first-half scoring.

UNH had an opportunity to score in the closing minute, but Webster’s free-position shot was snared by Sandtorv.

The Wildcats held Stony Brook, which entered the game ranked sixth in the nation in offense (15.10 goals per game), to three second-half goals.

New Hampshire returns to action April 17 (4 p.m.) at 19th-ranked University of Connecticut. The Wildcats’ next home game is Senior Day on April 21 vs. Boston University. Game time at Memorial Field is 1 p.m.
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