BANNER ELK, N.C. --- The Belmont Abbey College women's lacrosse team outscored Lees-McRae College by a 15-5 margin in the first half en route to a 20-4 victory on Friday night in Conference Carolinas play on Tate Field.
Belmont Abbey (7-6, 3-2 CC) outshot Lees-McRae (1-11, 0-6 CC) by a 36-11 margin, including a 22-6 advantage in the first half, while winning the ground ball battle, 40-22. The Bobcats controlled 17-of-25 draws on the evening, as Belmont Abbey converted 18-of-20 clear attempts.
Anna DeLuke (Woodstock, Ga.) celebrated her senior night with her 11th career goal, as Katelin Rooney (Naples, Fla.), Nicole Dupont (Fort Myers, Fla.), and Olivia Gudewich (Frederick, Md.) each found the back of the net for the Bobcats. Rooney and Nicole Nixon (Charlotte, N.C.) each tallied an assist, as Rooney controlled a game-high eight draws and Jessica Travers (Asheville, N.C.) posted nine saves and five ground balls.
Elyse Mohn and Laura Dowd each posted a game-high four goals for Belmont Abbey, as Lindsay Connolly tallied a hat trick and five assists on the night. Katy Connery and Rebecca Diggs both chipped in two goals and one assist, as Dowd recorded a game-high seven ground balls. Tory Morgan made five saves between the pipes for the Abbey.
Belmont Abbey jumped out to an early 7-0 lead in the first 10 minutes of the game, stretching the margin to 11-0 before Gudewich got the Bobcats on the board off a pass by Nixon. After the Crusaders countered with a pair of goals and Rooney answered with a strike of her own, Belmont Abbey closed out the first half with two goals to take a 15-2 advantage into the intermission.
Dupont answered for the Bobcats four and a half minutes into the second half, taking a pass from Rooney and finding the back of the net to open the period. Belmont Abbey would counter with a trio of strikes, as DeLuke capped the scoring for the Bobcats at the 8:30 mark with her seventh goal of the season.
Lees-McRae is expected to return 16 letter-winners from this year's squad, including rising seniors Travers, Nixon, Emily Guenthner (Nampa, Idaho), Cynthia Wegner (Stem, N.C.), Jessica MacConnell (Cary, N.C.), and Alexandra Smith (West Seneca, N.Y.).
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