LEWISTON, Maine -- After spotting Wesleyan University a 1-0 lead, the Bates College women's lacrosse team dominated the Cardinals on both ends of the field in a 15-5 NESCAC victory on Saturday at Garcelon Field.
The 20th-ranked Bobcats (2-2, 1-2 NESCAC) received four goals by the conference's scoring leader, senior Joan O'Neill (Westwood, Mass.), in addition to stellar games by first-year Kathy Yannopoulos (Weatogue, Conn.) and senior Jenna Dannis (Milford, N.H.). Yannopoulos scored twice and added three assists, six ground balls and four draw controls, while Dannis contributed two goals, one assist, three ground balls and six draw controls. Senior Maggie Reilly (Wellesley, Mass.) scored a pair of goals with one assist, and sophomore SooHee Yoon (Lexington, Mass.), normally a defensive midfielder, scored her first two career goals to go with three ground balls and three draw controls.
The Bobcats won 16 of 22 draws and 34 out of 51 ground balls, while outshooting the Cardinals 34-13.
Sophomore Kayla Ellman (Montclair, N.J.) and junior Catherine Taibi (Upper Montclair, N.J.) scored two goals apiece for Wesleyan (2-2, 1-2), while senior goalkeeper Maggie Drowica (Glen Head, N.Y.) made 11 saves, caused three turnovers and collected four ground balls. Sophomore defender Abby D'Angelo (Weston, Mass.) led the team with five ground balls.
Ellman led off the scoring for Wesleyan 1:24 into the first half on the first assist of the season by senior Liz Chabot (Rye, N.Y.). O'Neill evened the game two minutes later on the first of her four free-position shots in the first half. Dannis then won the ensuing draw and fed Yoon for her first goal 10 seconds after O'Neill's tally for a 2-1 lead.
Senior Lindsay Thompson (Ipswich, Mass.) found Yoon for another score with a feed from behind Wesleyan's goal for a 3-1 lead with 23:26 left, and O'Neill's second free-position goal made it 4-1 with over 20 minutes still left in the half.
Wesleyan junior Kaylin Berger (Farmington, Conn.) scored on an 8-meter shot of her own at the 13:59 mark, and the Cardinals got some momentum rolling at 12:43, as Berger dumped a vertical entry pass to Taibi for a turnaround finish that closed the deficit to 4-3. But Bates finished the half with three unanswered goals: Yannopoulos fed Thompson to make it 5-3 at 12:20, and over nine minutes later, with the score still 5-3, Yannopoulos was granted a free-position attempt that found the back of the net. Dannis added to the lead with 1:34 left in the half on Bates' eighth free-position attempt of the half.
Ellman closed it to 7-4 in the opening minute of the second half, but Bates answered with five straight, including the first two of the season by Reilly, for a 12-4 lead. The Bobcats padded the lead with three goals scored in a span of 31 seconds, finished of by Reilly's assist to sophomore Bridget Meedzan (Ipswich, Mass.) with 59 seconds left.
Bates junior Eloise O'Connor (Loudonville, N.Y.) made three saves in the win.