BRIDGEWATER, Mass. – Led by tournament MVP sophomore goaltender Maria Woodall (Norfolk, Mass.), second-seeded Westfield State University captured the 2017 Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) Women's Lacrosse Tournament championship with a decisive 15-5 victory over number one seed and four-time reigning champion Bridgewater State University on Saturday afternoon at Swenson Field.
The MASCAC Tournament title marks the first for the Owls (13-5) who will now advance to the NCAA Division III Tournament for the first time in program history. Westfield will await word on the NCAA Tournament pairings which are expected to be announced on Sunday night at 9:30 on NCAA.com.
Woodall finished with nine saves on the afternoon. She posted a 4.00 goals against average and a .750 save percentage in two games during the tournament.
The Owls scored the first seven goals of the contest and held an 8-1 lead at the break. Sophomore midfielder Sydney Lambert (Hanover, Mass.) and sophomore attack Elizabeth Navoni (Mansfield, Mass.) notched two goals apiece to lead the way for Westfield in the opening stanza.
The Owls were never seriously threatened the rest of the way as they maintained at least a seven-goal lead in the second half. Back-to-back player-advantage goals by junior attack Samantha Coyle (Weymouth, Mass.) capped off the scoring and gave Westfield the ten-goal cushion with 5 ½ minutes left to play in the final stanza.
Coyle finished with a game-high four goals and an assist for five points, while Lambert checked in with three goals and a helper. Navoni, sophomore attack Marissa Nimeskern (Hanover, Mass.) and junior midfielder Stephanie Godek (West Springfield, Mass.) added two goals apiece for the visitors.
Senior midfielder Melissa Renauld (Framingham, Mass.) and sophomore attack Elizabeth Ettridge (Marshfield, Mass.) paced the host Bears with two goals each, while freshman attack Hayley White (Dracut, Mass.) contributed a goal and an assist. BSU senior goaltender Allie Forman (Marblehead, Mass.) turned aside eight shots in the setback.
The Owls outshot the Bears by a decided margin of 31-18. Westfield also finished with a slight edge in both ground balls (11-9) and draw controls (11-10).
Bridgewater wraps up the 2017 season with an overall record of 12-7. The Bears streak of nine straight conference titles (five NEWLA, four MASCAC) also came to an end.