Immediate Release: April 23, 2011
VESTAL, N.Y. -- The Binghamton women's lacrosse team got off to a hot start, but was unable to contain the highly touted Albany squad. The Bearcats (3-12, 1-4 AE) dropped its third straight America East game, 14-7, to the Great Danes, Saturday afternoon from the Bearcats Sports Complex.
"I thought we played well today, but we made a few too many mistakes in the second half to overcome," head coach Tony Zostant said. "You have to tip your hat to Albany though, they are a great team and well coached. But I thought our girls played with intensity for 60 minutes and never stopped fighting against the No. 7 team in the country."
Binghamton came out of the gates fired up, after they welcomed inaugural Bearcats Buddies member, Rachel Polhamus to the Bearcats Sports Complex. BU scored the games first two goals, taking a 2-0 lead at the 25:30 mark. Sophomore Katherine Hunsberger netted BU's first goal off a nice feed from junior Lis Zuern. A few minutes later junior Allie Sabitus found senior Ali Castiglie off a free position attempt adding to BU's early advantage.
From there, Albany began to roll scoring seven straight goals. The unstoppable combination of National Player of the Year candidate, Taylor Frink and Jodi Battaglia connected on three of the goals. Frink set school-record with eight assists in the game, seven of them to Battaliga.
With the game beginning to slip away from the Bearcats, Castiglie found the back of the net for the second time, making the score 7-3, with 4:32 remaining in the half. BU continued to claw back, as Zuern weaved her way through the nation's top defense to cut the deficit to three heading into intermission.
Out of the break, Binghamton had a golden opportunity to slice the Albany lead to two, winning the opening draw control, but a stingy Great Dane defense denied the Bearcats. Instead, Albany added to their lead, as Frink and Battaglia connected for a fourth time. Another Albany goal pushed the lead back to five, but the Bearcats would not go away. Senior Beth Moore netted back-to-back free position shots, trimming the Albany lead to three, 9-6, with 21:59 to play. That would be as close as BU would get however, as the Great Danes scored five of the last six goals.
The nation's top defense forced the Bearcats into 18 turnovers and converted them into 16 ground balls. Albany outshot Binghamton 23-12, as senior goalie Lauren Scott had seven saves. Defending America East Player of the Year, Nikki Branchini dominated the draw circle corralling eight draw controls, as Albany won 14 of the 23 draws.
The Bearcat defense play tough throughout the game, creating 12 turnovers of their own and picking up 13 ground balls. Binghamton converted 10-of-14 clears, while Albany was almost perfect going 10-for-11.
Moore finished the game with two goals, two ground balls and three caused turnovers. Senior defender Siobhan Menz scooped up four ground balls of her own. Redshirt senior Lizzie Wright had a solid game scoring a goal and causing two turnovers.
Frink finished the game with 10 points (two goals, eight assists), while Battaglia netted seven goals for Albany.
Moore and Frink were named America East Players of the Game.
NOTE: The Bearcats Buddies program is a joint intitative between the Binghamton University athletic department and Colleges versus Cancer and local non-profit A Time to Heal. The mission of the program is to improve the quality of life for pediatric cancer patients.
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