BOSTON – Laura Puccia (Fairport, N.Y.) recorded three goals and two assists, but the University of New Hampshire women's lacrosse team was defeated 13-8 Wednesday afternoon by Boston University at Nickerson Field.
UNH lost its second consecutive game to fall to 3-7 overall and 1-2 in America East. BU, which has won eight straight home games in the series, extended its winning streak to six games to improve to 7-4, 3-0.
Puccia's five points led three Wildcats in multiple points; she had one ground ball, one draw control and one caused turnover en route to garnering UNH's America East Player of the Game.
Ilana Cohen (Andover, Mass.), who entered the game with 98 career points, attained the 100-point milestone with the second of her three points (two goals, one assist); she was also credited with three ground balls and three caused turnovers. In 61 career games, she has 57 goals and 44 assists for 101 points. Kate Keagins (Bay Shore, N.Y.) tallied a goal and an assist.
Kathleen O'Keefe (Chatham, N.J.) finished with six saves, five ground balls and one caused turnover. Christina Sheridan, her BU counterpart, stopped eight shots. Mallory Collins (4g, 1a), Molly Swain (4g) and Danielle Etrasco (1g, 2a) led the attack.
The first half opened with two fruitless possessions by both teams until Swain gave the Terriers a 1-0 lead at 24:20 when her low shot from the top of the 8-meter arc bounced over O'Keefe and under the crossbar. Swain netted a free-position goal at 20:01 to extend the advantage to 2-0.
With the Terriers facing a player-down situation due to a yellow card, Puccia scored on a free-position shot at 17:31 to lift the 'Cats within 2-1. From the top of the fan, she patiently advanced towards goal, dropped her crosse low and fired a low shot into the cage.
Daneille Etrasco's unassisted tally reestablished a two-goal lead, 3-1, at 11:47.
New Hampshire once again pulled within one goal, 3-2, on its next possession. Keagins circled from the top of the fan through the left side to behind the net, where she slipped a centering pass down low that Puccia one-timed into the upper-right corner at 10:35.
Collins scored goals 78 seconds apart – at 5:39 and 4:41 – to give BU a 5-2 lead heading into halftime. The Terriers held the first-half edge in shots (10-8) and draw controls (7-1),while UNH had a 10-9 advantage in ground balls.
The Wildcats opened the second half with three consecutive goals to forge the first tie of the game, 5-5. Kayleigh Hinkle (Glenelg, Md.) scored a man-up goal at 28:41. Keagins gained possession deep in the defensive zone and went coast-to-coast before being denied by Sheridan. Hinkle corralled the ground ball in front, however, to score her eighth goal of the season.
O'Keefe denied Etrasco on a one-timer from point-blank range and at the other end of the field, Puccia advanced the ball from the top-right of the fan to Amber Casiano (South Windsor, Conn.), who slung a sidearm shot into the goal at 24:26 to lift the 'Cats within 5-4.
Puccia, at the left post, centered the ball low to Cohen, who fired a one-timer into the upper-left corner to level the score, 5-5, at 20:55.
BU called time out and regained the lead at 19:16 when Etrasco charged down the middle of the fan and shot inside the right post.
UNH pulled even, 6-6, when Cohen found Puccia in front of the cage and she shot high into the goal for her team-leading 18th goals of the season. It also marked Cohen's 100th point and team-high 12th assist.
The Terriers responded with three goals in 2:34 to build a 9-6 advantage. Catie Tilton, alone at the right post, finished Etrasco's feed across the goalmouth into an open net to give the home team a 7-6 lead at 13:48. Kristen Mogavero's shot deflected off O'Keefe and trickled across the goal line at 12:43, then Swain struck at 11:14 for a three-goal advantage.
Two minutes later, Hinkle's shot at the front doorstep was stopped by Sheridan. On the next UNH possession, Keagins charged down the left side of the fan and ripped a shot that caromed off the right post.
Swain potted her fourth goal of the game on a drive through the middle of the fan at 7:06 to create a 10-6 lead. Cohen scored on a free-position shot from the left wing to trim the deficit to 10-7 at 5:11, but the Terriers won the ensuing draw control and Collins netted a free-position goal at 3:54 to reestablish a four-goal margin.
Keagins, with an open net on a free position, scored at 2:14 to lift the 'Cats within 11-8. The Terriers, who recorded an 18-5 edge in draw controls, once again earned control of the ensuing draw and, with O'Keefe out of the goalmouth to generate defensive pressure, Hannah Frey scored into an open net for a 12-8 lead at 1:34. Collins scored into an open net with 28 seconds remaining to close the scoring.
BU finished with a 24-20 shot advantage but committed more turnovers (19-13) and UNH had a 20-16 edge in ground balls.
New Hampshire concludes its stretch of three consecutive road games April 7 (1 p.m.) at Lehigh University. The Wildcats' next home game is April 14 (1 p.m.) against the University at Albany.