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Host Amherst holds off women's lacrosse 11-9

Camille Belletete led Bates in goals, ground balls, draw controls and caused turnovers in an 11-9 loss at Amherst on March 10, 2017. (File photo by Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College)

AMHERST, Mass. -- Amherst scored three straight goals in the second half to assume a five-goal lead, then held on to defeat the Bates women's lacrosse team 11-9 on Friday evening. 

Julia Crerend led Amherst (2-1, 1-1 NESCAC) with four goals and one assist, while Claire Cagnassola added three goals and one assist and Kelly Karczewski scored twice.

Bates (2-2, 0-2 NESCAC) received a team-high three goals and four ground balls and a game-high six draw controls and three caused turnovers from junior midfielder Camille Belletete (Jaffrey, N.H.) in the defeat. Senior Teal Otley (Cumberland, Maine) and Sydney Cowles (Wayne, Pa.) contributed two goals apiece and sophomore Sydney Howard (Ashland, Mass.) added one goal and one assist.

The game was rescheduled from Saturday to avoid frigid weather forecasts.

Three runs marked the first half. Bates got on the scoreboard first with Howard's free-position shot 88 seconds into the game, but Cagnassola evened the game 28 seconds later on an assist by Katherine Malone. The hosts scored two more goals inside the game's first five minutes, Karczewski followed by Cagnassola, and Crerend made it a 4-0 run and a 4-1 Amherst lead with 18:44 to go, on Cagnassola's assist.

Bates responded with four unanswered goals over the next seven minute to retake the lead at 5-4. Howard fed Belletete to halve the deficit at the 17:30 mark. Cowles scored an 8-meter shot at 16:02 and Belletete scored again unassisted to tie the game with 14:06 to go. Junior Allison Dewey (Vergennes, Vt.) put the Bobcats ahead on a free-position shot with 12:15 left in the half. 

Amherst tied the game for the third time as Annie Cohen fed Karczewski with 7:16 to go. Amherst then switched goalies from starter Kyra Gardner (two saves) to Talia Land, who went on to earn the win in goal behind seven saves.

Amherst closed out the half with two more goals, by Mary Grace Cronin and Crerend, and Crerend then made it a 4-0 run and an 8-5 Amherst lead in the second minute of the second half.

At the end of a 12-minute scoreless stretch, Bates senior Kaileigh Maguire (Sudbury, Mass.) assisted Cowles on her second goal with 16:37 to go. Amherst responded immediately, with Crerend feeding Malone to regain a three-goal lead just 14 seconds later. Crerend and Cagnassola tallied one more time apiece at the 15:10 and 9:51 marks, opening up an 11-6 Amherst lead.

Bates began to claw back into the game when first-year Avery MacMullen (New Haven, Conn.) assisted on Belletete's third goal. Otley scored consecutive goals at the 7:18 and 5:05 marks to close the Bobcats within two goals, at 11-9. Bates won the ensuing draw and outshot Amherst 3-0 in the final five minutes but couldn't put the ball in the back of the net, with Land making saves on shots by Belletete and Maguire.

Sophomore Eliza Statile (Ipswich, Mass.) was credited with five saves in the game. Bates controlled 14 of 21 draws, outshot Amherst 23-22 and committed just five fouls to Amherst's 26.

Bates will next play Wheaton (Mass.) College on Tuesday at 4pm to begin a five-game homestand for the Bobcats.