Beavers Reach Fourth Straight NEWMAC Final, Extend Conference Winning Streak to 14
BABSON PARK, Mass.—Sophomore Juliana McGuire (Sparta, N.J.) scored three times and led all players with 10 draw controls as top-seeded Babson College rolled past fifth-seeded Wheaton College, 18-4, in a New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Tournament semifinal on Thursday afternoon at MacDowell Field.
With its 12th consecutive NEWMAC semifinal victory, Babson improves to 13-5 overall and advances to its fourth straight conference final. Wheaton sees its season come to a close at 7-11.
Senior Lexi Lenaghan (Hanover, Mass.) scored a game-high five goals and sophomore Georgia Salvatore (Westwood, Mass.) had three goals, four ground balls and two caused turnovers for the Beavers. Senior Riley Buonagurio (Duxbury, Mass.), sophomore Sara O'Connor (Marshfield, Mass.) and first-year Coco Creedon (McKinney, Texas) all contributed two goals apiece, while juniors Taylor Herrmann (Mahwah, N.J.) and Valerie Quinlan (Norwood, Mass.) dished out four and three assists, respectively.
Junior Molly Covarrubias (Framingham., Mass.) finished with two goals, two assists, two draw controls and a caused turnover to lead the Lyons. Classmates Blake Ferretti (Cranston, R.I.) and Meg Sharick (Amherst, Mass.) both recorded three ground balls and one caused turnover, while sophomore Jena Casman (Woodbridge, Conn.) made 12 saves in defeat.
The Green and White won the first seven draws and got goals from seven different players on the way to building an 8-1 lead with 12:16 to go in the opening half. Wheaton trimmed its deficit to 8-3 on back-to-back tallies by Covarrubias and junior Lilly Callahan (Wilbraham, Mass.) with 5:29 to go in the period, but the Beavers struck for three markers in just 71 seconds as part of an extended 10-goal run that pushed the margin back to 11-3 at the break.
Lenaghan scored her third goal of the half, Quinlan recorded her third assist of the period on O'Connor's second tally, and McGuire capped the run by converting a free-position chance 2:19 from halftime. Creedon and Buonagurio both scored in the first five minutes of the second half to make it 13-3, and Salvatore and Herrmann followed with free-position markers to extend Babson's cushion to 15-3 with 20:20 remaining in the contest.
Lenaghan scored twice and Salvatore completed her hat trick as the Beavers took their biggest lead of the game at 18-3 with just over 13 minutes to play.
Babson will host either second-seeded MIT or third-seeded Springfield in the NEWMAC Tournament final on Saturday at 1 p.m.
• The Beavers are 25-16 all-time against Wheaton and have won the last five games between the programs.
• Babson is 4-4 against Wheaton in NEWMAC Tournament play although Thursday's win was its first over the Lyons in the conference playoffs since 1996.
• With five tallies Lenaghan now ranks eighth in career points (216) and 10th on the Beavers' all-time list with 152 goals.
• McGuire's 10 draws matches her career high and gives her 29 over the last three contests.