W’s lax incinerates Smith, Trinity

The Williams women’s lacrosse team remained undefeated after beating Smith and Trinity this week, upping its record to 7-0 overall. Williams retained its national ranking of sixth.

On Saturday, senior All-American captain Cara Shortsleeve tallied four goals and one assist to lead the Ephs to a 12-4 victory. “We’re very happy with the way we played today,” said Williams’ head coach Chris Mason in response to the game, “Trinity is a very dangerous attacking team and they have an outstanding goalkeeper. To hold them to only four goals and to score 12 goals on their goalkeeper makes us feel good about the way we played.”

Williams came out strong, earning a 4-0 lead in under six minutes of play. Trinity got its first goal 10:56 into the first half. Williams added one more and went into the second half with a 5-1 lead.

The Ephs wasted no time in the second half, scoring just 15 seconds into the second on a goal on a goal from Shortsleeve. Williams rallied to score six more goals before the end of the second, getting goals from Sam Daigneault ’00, Stephanie Noering ’02, Kristen Sullivan ’01 (2) as well as two more from Shortsleeve. Trinity scored two at the end of the game to close the margin to eight.

In goal for Williams was Abigail Jackson ’03, who faced 12 shots and made eight saves. Trinity’s Kate Derosier faced 39 shots and made 27 saves.

Earlier in the week, the team routed Smith 17-3. The Ephs were led by Shortsleeve, who had four goals and two assists, and Caitlin Ritchie ’00, who had five goals and one assist.

Jackson played 50 minutes at goal and made 6 saves while giving up two goals. Joanna Pons ’02, in relief of Jackson, played 10 minutes and made two saves, giving up one goal.

Ritchie credits the team’s undefeated mark so far to its deep bench, saying “We have an advantage over many teams in the strength of our entire team, especially players coming off the bench. We are a very deep team and that is one of our strong points.”

Ritchie also credits the team’s “incredible” defense, noting that “if they keep playing the way they have been, and the attack keeps scoring, we have a great chance to keep winning well into the postseason.”

This early in the season, the Ephs have not yet faced their toughest competition, Middlebury and Amherst, both of whom are ranked ahead of Williams in the national rankings. In Shortsleeve’s mind, the key to continuing their unbeaten streak and defeating tough teams like Middlebury and Amherst is through maintaining “a high intensity level every day at practice and focus on the basics of the game.”

The Ephs will try to keep their unbeaten streak intact during today’s 7 p.m. game at Union. They also play Wesleyan at home on Saturday at 1 p.m.