Men’s team steams ahead with pair of victories

WOMEN’S LACROSSE SPLIT their games over the weekend. (file photo)

RPI women’s lacrosse played two thrilling games on their northern New York road trip this weekend against St. Lawrence and Clarkson Universities. In the first game, against St. Lawrence, junior attacker Morgan Doyle led the Engineers with two goals while seven other players each scored one. For most of the first half, RPI outplayed the Saints, and when freshman attacker Liz Brady scored unassisted with 8:44 remaining in the first half, the Engineers held a 5–3 lead.

St. Lawrence turned the tide, though, scoring the next four goals, with two each by midfielders Kiera Taussig and Kayla Schmalz, to take a 7–5 lead early in the second half. The Engineers regained the momentum as Doyle, junior attacker Allie Claroni, senior midfielder Carly Kirchner, and sophomore midfielder Maddy Aslansan scored goals in succession to regain a two-goal lead for RPI with less than four minutes remaining.

With defeat just minutes away, the Saints answered the bell, scoring two goals in the final minutes to tie the game at nine and force overtime. In the extra frame, RPI sophomore goalie Aleena Milinski made three clutch saves to keep the Engineers afloat. However, RPI struggled to clear the ball out of their zone, and with 1:57 remaining in overtime, St. Lawrence attacker Kara Hurley scored to give the Saints a 10–9 victory.

The next day against Clarkson, senior attacker Sophie Hager scored three goals to increase her season total to 22, while Claroni and Doyle each scored twice, and the Engineers once again took an early lead. With less than 10 minutes remaining in the first, a goal by Claroni, her first, gave the Engineers a 5–1 lead.

Clarkson chipped away, though, scoring six of the next 10 goals to cut the lead to two with little time remaining. Then, much like the last game, midfielders Jaid Baytos and Christina Pollard scored goals in the final minute to force a 9–9 tie and overtime. However, this time around, the game wasn’t decided until the third overtime, and then it was RPI sophomore midfielder Abbey Salvon who found the back of the Clarkson net to give Rensselaer a 10–9 win.

The win and loss bring women’s lacrosse’s record to 4–6 this spring. Next up for them are road games at William Smith College and Union College this Friday and Saturday, respectively.

On the men’s side, the games were not nearly as dramatic. In a road game at the State University of New York at Oneonta on April 4, 10 different Engineers scored goals and RPI took control of the game quickly. Junior attacker Zach Lukas, junior midfielder Matthew Gilman, and sophomore attacker JT Kelly each scored three goals. The final score was RPI 19, Oneonta 7.

Then, on April 8, against Union College, Lukas scored four goals while freshman attacker Owen Putnam netted two. After Rensselaer scored four of the first five goals to take a 4–1 lead, the Dutchmen rallied, scoring twice in the final minute of the second quarter to cut the lead to one. But, senior attacker Breanainn McNeally answered with his 34th goal of the season with one second remaining in the first half to give the Engineers a two-goal cushion at the break.

The Dutchmen pulled within one point of the Engineers again midway through the third quarter. But then, with a 6–5 lead, and the outcome of the game still uncertain, Rensselaer seized the moment and scored four unanswered goals over the next 20 minutes to put the game out of reach. The final score was RPI 12, Union 6.

The wins improve men’s lacrosse’s record to 7–3 in 2017. Next up for them are home games against Babson and Skidmore on Wednesday and Saturday, respectively, and a road game at Williams College next Tuesday.