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Cacciola, Dzialo’s Impressive Outings Lead Women’s Lacrosse in Setback to Wagner

Links: Box Score | Highlights

NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. – Gabby Cacciola’s single game career-high 16 saves led the Merrimack College women’s lacrosse team Saturday afternoon against Wagner at Duane Stadium, but the Seahawks claimed a 22-11 victory.    


Cacciola’s impressive day in the cage and Meghan Dzialo’s team-high four goals helped the Warriors claw back from an early deficit, but late Wagner tallies were too much in the end.

Catherine Mahanna and Sophie Scearbo also enjoyed solid offensive outings, as both players scored a pair.

The Basics
Score: Wagner 22, Merrimack 11
Records: Merrimack (1-4, 1-2 NEC) | Wagner (4-1, 4-0 NEC)

How It Happened

  • The visitors from Staten Island staked themselves to an early 3-0 lead in the opening 10:10, but Merrimack got right back in it.
  • Merrimack scored on a pair of free positions exactly 60 seconds apart when Dzialo had her first of the day, then Bridget Boyle capped the two-goal run with her first as a Warrior with 11:17 to play. 
  • Wagner’s offense clicked and enjoyed a 6-0 run in the following eight minutes.
  • Scearbo got one back for the Warriors with 1:07 left when she finished a pass from Tristen Novak, but the Seahawks added one late to take a 10-3 lead into the break.
  • Wagner looked to put the hammer down early in the second half with a goal 30 seconds in, but Merrimack fought to stay in the game. Mahanna tallied a goal on a free position two minutes later to stop the Seahawk run. 
  • The visitors responded with two goals just eight seconds apart, but Merrimack had a two-goal run of its own, which included an exceptional finish from Dzialo to begin the outburst, then a fantastic individual effort from Scearbo to cut through the Seahawk defense. 
  • Both sides traded goals in the latter stages of the opening ten minutes, which included Haley Bartlett’s first of the day.
  • Merrimack put together another 2-0 run near the midway point of the half when Mahanna tallied her second of the day on a free position, then Dzialo completed her hat trick when she gathered a loose ball and fired one home. 
  • Wagner stopped the run with a tally at the 13:59 mark, then Olivia Valdes got it right back with her first of the season on another free position.
  • The Seahawks were able to pull away in the closing 10 minutes, but Dzialo was still able to add her fourth of the day in the process.

Notes & Numbers

  • Bartlett’s goal was her 139th as a Warrior, which puts her alone at sixth all-time in program history.
  • Cacciola’s exceptional day included 10 saves in the second half to keep the Warriors in the game.
  • Taylor Darrell’s two caused turnovers led the Warriors.
  • Dzialo was a force in the midfield, as she collected a team-high seven draw controls.
  • Dzialo now leads the NEC in goals with 18.
  • Shots (MER-WAG): 24-49 (19-38 SOG)
  • Draw Controls (MER-WAG): 15-20 Ground Balls (MER-WAG): 13-21
  • Turnovers (MER-WAG): 19-10 // Clears (MER- WAG): 13-16 // 18-20

Up Next
Merrimack continues NEC play Wednesday when it goes to Fairfield, Conn. to take on Sacred Heart. Draw control is slated for 3:00 pm.

For continuing coverage of Merrimack College Athletics, visit and follow the Warriors on Twitter and on Facebook.

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