BRIDGEWATER, Mass. - The Bridgewater State College women's lacrosse team advanced to the championship game of the 2008 New England Women's Lacrosse Alliance (NEWLA) Tournament as the top-seeded Bears downed fourth-seeded Westfield State, 22-8, this afternoon in Bridgewater.
BSC (13-4) will be making their first appearance in the NEWLA title game since the 2004 season. Bridgewater left the NEWLA after the 2004 campaign and competed as an independent team for three years before rejoining the Alliance this season. The Bears will host the championship game on Saturday afternoon at 2 PM against Castleton State College. Castleton defeated Worcester State, 12-6, in the other semifinal match.
Senior midfielder Lauryn Serratore (Norwood, MA), sophomore midfielder Shannon Manning (Framingham, MA) and freshman attack Jenny Jones (Framingham, MA) all eclipsed single-season school records in the win.
Serratore registered 11 draw controls to increase her season total to 74 as she broke Corinne Baker's 2003 record of 69 draw controls. Manning dished out four assists to break Paula Habel's single-season assist mark of 47 set back in 2002. Manning, who also scored four goals on the day, now has 48 assists on the year. The freshman Jones scored three goals to break Stacie Dufour and Laura Swart's rookie goal scoring mark of 53 set in 2000. Jones now has a team-leading 55 goals on the season.
Manning helped BSC take a 15-4 halftime lead as she tallied BSC's first three goals of the game. Westfield actually trailed only 5-3 with 18 minutes remaining in the opening stanza, but BSC outscored the Owls 10-1 over the final 18 minutes of the half to put the game out of reach.
Westfield was able to pull to within ten goals twice in the second half but that would be as close as they would get. BSC would score the final four goals of the game with Jones' recording her record-breaking goal with 5:38 left on the clock, and Manning notching her record-breaking assist on a goal by freshman attack Caitlin Young (Holden, MA) with 2:35 left to play.
The Bears also received outstanding contributions in the attacking zone from sophomore attack Katie DeMaio (Port Jefferson Station, NY) and freshmen attackers Courtney Lennon (Medfield, MA) and Patricia Maloney (Walpole, MA). DeMaio scored five goals to go along with a pair of assists, Lennon tallied three goals and three assists, while Maloney registered four goals and one assist.
Bridgewater State sophomore goaltender Meghan Griffin (Billerica, MA) played well for the Bears as she turned aside 16 shots. Westfield was 0-for-7 in free position attempts thanks in part to the outstanding play of the BSC netminder.
Freshman midfielder Laura Chiricosta (Lexington, MA) paced the Owls with four goals, while freshman midfielder Rachel Dionne (Feeding Hills, MA) added a goal and as assist. Senior goalie Kasey Rogers (West Springfield, MA) registered six saves between the pipes for Westfield.
Bridgewater held a slight 32-29 advantage in shots for the game, as well as a 22-10 edge in draw controls. The Bears, however committed 20 turnovers compared to just 11 for the Owls.
Along with her 48 assists this season, Manning also has 47 goals to her credit. With her 95 points, she moved past Ann Silvia and Habel into second place on the Bears single-season scoring list. Silvia tallied 91 points in 1999, while Habel registered 94 points in 2001. Manning needs just five points to break Habel's single-season scoring mark of 99 points which was set in 2002.
Westfield State ends the 2008 campaign with a record of 8-7. The women's lacrosse team at Westfield became a varsity program in the sport prior to the 2007 season.