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NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. – Freshman goalkeeper Alexa Petzold (Ridgewood, N.J.) of the Merrimack College women’s lacrosse team totaled a career-high 12 saves on Thursday afternoon against the No. 17 Dowling College Lions, but the Warriors could not muster enough offense in a 10-2 loss from Martone-Mejail Field on Thursday evening.

Links: Box Score

The Basics
Score: Merrimack 2
| Dowling 10
Records: Merrimack (3-7, 1-5 NE-10)
| Dowling (8-3, 3-0 ECC)
Martone-Mejail Field | North Andover, Mass.

How It Happened
The Navy and Gold did not get off to a good start as the Lions jumped out to a 2-0 advantage less than eight minutes into the game. Freshman Annette Ruggiero (Peabody, Mass.) snapped the scoring drought at the 16:23 mark with her first goal of the game and 18th of the season. Ruggiero got a free position and pocketed a goal past goalkeeper Lauren Young.

The 17th-ranked team in nation responded with five straight goals to end the half, leading 7-1. Petzold played one of her best halves of the season, totaling six saves against one of the top offenses in the nation.

Over the first 30 minutes, the Warriors failed to clear the ball of four occasions, hampering their ability to develop an offense rhythm. The Lions totaled 16 shots compared to four for Merrimack.

Redshirt freshman attacker Hunter McCarthy (Avon, Conn.) scored to begin the second stanza, spinning away from two defenders and shooting high-to-high, to make it a five-goal game at 7-2. Neither team was able to score over the next six minutes, with the Warriors missing out on a couple of opportunities. With 24:26 to go, Ruggiero dodged nicely to top of the crease, but was stoned by Young. The Navy and Gold had a three-on-two moments later, only to have Ruggiero’s pass broken up by defender Taylor Davide.

The Lions scored three times in a span of 4:17 midway through the second stanza to put the game away. Petzold was the story of the contest for the Warriors, finishing with 12 saves and six in each half. She snapped her previous career high of 10 saves which occurred against No. 9 Stonehill on March 19

Inside The Numbers

  • Ruggiero led the team with two draw controls, while Petzold snatched up a team-leading four ground balls, which was one off her career best
  • Freshman Carly McKenna (Saco, Maine) and senior Kelly Metzger (Trumbull, Conn.) finished as the only two Warriors with caused turnovers
  • Merrimack improved on its clearing game in the second stanza, successfully clearing the ball on 9-of-10 attempts. The Lions were 17-of-18 for the entire game
  • Jackie Andersen entered the game as one of the top players in the nation and she lived up to the billing. She finished with a five-point day, leading all players with four goals

Up Next
The Warriors travel south to Garden City, N.Y. to meet up with the No. 1 Adelphi University Panthers, the reigning national champions and owners of a 31-game winning streak, at 4 p.m. on Saturday afternoon.

Mike McMahon is in his 13th year covering Merrimack College for The Eagle Tribune and is the founder and managing editor of The Mack Report. Mike also serves on staff as a senior writer at College Hockey News. Follow him on Twitter @MikeMcMahonCHN

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