LOUDONVILLE — Three different Saints scored four goals, as the Siena women’s lacrosse team clinched at least a share of the MAAC regular-season championship Thursday with a 14-9 win against Niagara.
On its home turf at Hickey Field, Siena led 4-3 before Nicole McNeely scored with 4:19 to go in the first half. The goal from McNeely started a 7-1 run for the Saints that saw them secure control of the contest. Siena maintained at least a five-goal lead in the fourth quarter and led by as many as eight in the final period.
While Siena has played in the last two MAAC championship games, Thursday’s victory secured the program’s first share of a regular-season title since 2005. Siena has never won a MAAC postseason championship.
Siena is 10-7 overall and 6-2 in MAAC games. The Saints have completed their regular-season, while the three teams — Canisius, Monmouth and Niagara — that are each a half-game behind Siena in the league standings finish their regular-season action this weekend. None of the teams that are 5-2 in MAAC games play each other this weekend, so a four-way tie atop the league standings is possible.
[ngg src=”galleries” ids=”37″ display=”basic_imagebrowser”]Against Niagara, each of Siena’s Jordan Bentley, McNeely and Mary Soures scored four goals. McNeely also had two assists. Grace Dobrzynski produced two assists, Kelsey Lane added a goal and an assist, and Amanda Nieman scored one goal.
A freshman, Dobrzynski pushed her program-record for assists in a single season to 39, a total that’s one ahead of McNeely’s 38 this year. McNeely’s 83 points are a program record for a season, while Soures’ 60 goals are also a single-season Saints record.
In defeat, Rachel Crane scored four goals.
Siena will next play in the MAAC tournament, which starts April 30. Head coach Abby Rehfuss’ Saints have won their last four games.
Niagara 2 1 1 5 — 9
Siena 3 3 5 3 — 14
Niagara scoring: Crane 4-0, Garlow 2-1, McCormick 1-0, Brill 1-0, Rugaber 1-0. Siena scoring: McNeely 4-2, Bentley 4-0, Soures 4-0, Dobrzynski 0-2, Lane 1-1, Nieman 1-0. Goalies: Niagara, Messenger, 7 saves. Siena, Mervine, 5 saves; Krasner, 10 saves.