#22 Merrimack faces #1 Le Moyne in NE10 Championship

photo: James Stankiewicz/Merrimack

The No. 22 Merrimack College women’s lacrosse program will look to cap off its Cinderella postseason run with a conference title on Sunday when the Warriors battle defending league and national champion Le Moyne in the Northeast-10 Conference Championship at Ted Grant Field. Game time is set for 1 p.m.

Merrimack in the NE10 Championship:

  • Merrimack is making its 14th appearance in the league tournament, third most in the league, and second straight after going five seasons (2013-17) without doing so.
  • Following its upset as the No. 7 seed over second-seeded Adelphi on Wednesday, Merrimack has now reached the semifinal round of the tournament 10 times and did so for the second straight year after not advancing past the quarterfinal from 2011-17.
  • The Warriors have also reached their fourth NE10 Championship game and first since 2006 after their upset over New Haven on Saturday in the semifinals. They fell to Stonehill on all three of their previous occasions (2001, 2005, 2006).

Five Things To Know:

  • Despite an impressive 8-5 record in the conference standings, Merrimack finished as the No. 7 seed for the 2019 NE10 Championship due to a logjam in the standings that saw five teams separated by one win and a four-way tie for third place. But that hasn’t dissuaded the Warriors in either of their first two postseason games. They made history by upsetting seven-time champion Adelphi in the quarterfinal round by a 16-14 margin before running by sixth-seeded New Haven in the semifinals on Saturday by a 15-11 tally. Adelphi had reached the NE10 Finals in each of the last nine years and had won a league-high seven titles in that span but were denied the opportunity to do so after Merrimack’s victory, the first for the program over the Panthers since 2001.
  • Merrimack went 5-4 down the stretch in the regular season, outscoring its opponents 125-84 in that span while averaging nearly 14 goals per game. They have 31 goals in two NE10 Championship games (15.5/game). All of Merrimack’s losses this year have been against nationally ranked teams, as well as one Division I opponent.
  • Merrimack is now averaging 13.27 goals per game while yielding 10.17 per game on the other end, ranking fifth and fourth, respectively, in the NE10 in both category. They’ve scored 10-plus goals in 16 out of their 18 games thus far while limiting opponents to single digits in nine games, as well.
  • With 12 hat tricks in 18 games, senior Amber Feminella continues to lead the team in scoring with 78 points on the season (57g, 21a). She is one point away from tying the all-time school record and seven goals away from doing the same. Sophomore Haley Bartlett is right behind her with 71 points (58, 13a) and recently passed 100 for her career, while junior Ally DaCosta is the team’s top playmaker with 46 assists and has 68 points overall (including 32 in her last four outings). She set the school’s single-game scoring record against Franklin Pierce last week and also hit the career assist century mark. Feminella also leads the team with 85 draw controls, ahead of rookie Olivia Valdes‘ 43, while sophomore Kelsey Dalyhas caused 16 turnovers, the most by any Warrior. Senior Lauren Trepaney has started every game in net and ranks in the top-26 nationally in both goaltending categories and in the top-four in the NE10 (10.28 GAA, .515 SV%).
  • Merrimack will be looking for its first-ever win against Le Moyne in 10 tries; Sunday will be the first postseason meeting between the two schools. The Dolphins are 19-0 and reached the finals after dispatching fifth-seeded Assumption, 14-6. Bryanna Fazio’s 87 points are most for Le Moyne (62g, 25a) as are her 140 draw controls. She is one of three players over 60 points. Hannah George’s numbers in net are sparkling; in 19 starts she owns a 5.38 GAA and .548 SV%.

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