NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. – The No. 16 Merrimack College women’s lacrosse team had a five-goal lead early in the second half against one of the top teams in the country, but No. 12 Mercy scored nine of the game’s next 12 goals to ultimately come out on top, as the Warriors dropped their 2019 season opener by a 13-12 margin on Tuesday at Duane Stadium.
Senior Amber Feminella went toe-to-toe with one of the top players in the region in Mercy’s Hunter Isnardi, as the two combined for 11 of the game’s 24 goals themselves. Both would end the day with six points, as the former buried five goals and added an assist to lead the way offensively while, on the other end, senior Lauren Trepaney recorded 12 saves in what was a solid season debut between the pipes.
Score: Mercy 13, Merrimack 12
Records: #16 Merrimack (0-0, 0-0 NE10) | #12 Mercy (0-0, 0-0 ECC)
Location: Duane Stadium | North Andover, Mass.
How It Happened
- Merrimack dominated the opening half, outscoring the Mavericks by an 8-4 margin. It was sophomore Vicki Palmer who recorded her first collegiate goal in the game’s fourth minute before Feminella netted her first to make it 2-0.
- Isnardi answered for Mercy with just over 20 minutes to go in the half before junior Ally DaCosta went back-to-back in a 30-second span. Feminella then reached her hat trick with 16 minutes remaining in the opening frame, giving the Warriors what was their largest lead thus far at 6-1.
- The two teams traded goals over the final 15 minutes of the half, with Feminella and last year’s NE10 Rookie of the Year, Haley Bartlett, doing the honors for the home side.
- It was Bartlett scoring again early in the second half to match the largest lead of the day for the home side, but Mercy would start to chip away with a run of three straight goals over an eight-minute span, turning that deficit to two (9-7) with 18 minutes left.
- Junior Olivia Colletti buried her first of the season to edge the lead back to three goals, but Mercy found the twine twice in a 30-second stretch to put the pressure back on.
- Bartlett had the hosts back ahead by two goals with her third of the game with 12:30 on the clock, but the Mavericks would score four uninterrupted in four minutes to turn a two-goal deficit into a two-score lead with just under five minutes to play.
- Feminella took a feed from Bartlett and went upper-90 with just over 90 seconds to go; needing a goal to tie, the Warriors would win the ensuing draw control but came up empty on their attempt at the equalizer.
Notes & Numbers
- Mercy ended the game on a 9-3 run over the final 25 minutes.
- After finishing last year with a school-record 91 points, Feminella got off to a stellar start offensively with her six-point afternoon, two shy of her single-game personal best. She scored on five of her eight shots and led the Warriors with nine draw controls, as well.
- Six different Warriors caused a turnover, while senior Erin Blomberg had three ground balls.
- Trepaney finished with 12 saves in net, stopping nearly 50 percent of the 25 Mercy shots that wound up on target.
- Shots: 21-29 (18-25 SOG)
- FPG: (MC-MERCY): 5-9 // 6-12
- Draw Controls: 13-13 // Ground Balls: 16-21
- Turnovers: 19-17 (6-11 CT) // Clears: 14-18 // 14-17
Merrimack will take no another nationally ranked foe from the East Coast Conference (ECC) in its next outing, as the Warriors travel to Long Island to take on the No. 7 LIU Post Pioneers, an NCAA Tournament qualifier from a year ago, on Saturday (Feb. 23) at 11 a.m.