The UConn women’s lacrosse team was initially scheduled to take on Saint Joe’s in the great outdoors at Joseph J. Morrone Stadium at Rizza Performance Center. Mother Nature had other ideas Saturday, with Storrs, Connecticut getting an inch of snow when the game was supposed to be played.
These were no conditions for lacrosse to be played, so the teams tried to wait it out for a few hours, before deciding to hold the game inside at the Mark R. Shenkman Training Center, right next door. In front of a crowd of 90 people, the Hawks and the Huskies squared off, with the Huskies coming out on top 14-7.
Kate Shaffer was coming off a lackluster effort against a stingy James Madison defense that allowed her just a goal and no assists, a surprisingly pedestrian effort after she lit Fairfield up for 10 points. The senior didn’t quite reproduce her performance against the Stags, but she did post four scores and a pair of assists. That output came on a team-high eight shots, a demonstration of how much pressure she managed to put on opposing keeper Jorden Concordia, who managed just eight saves on the day. There’s a solid chance that the rough game against the Dukes was merely a blip, as it’s not easy to score against a team that talented.
Susan Lafountain had her most complete outing of the young season, absolutely tearing up the Hawks in the early minutes of action. She had a hat trick before the game was even a third done, but she didn’t score any more the rest of the way. Lafountain scored a single goal in each of the previous two games, with this one serving as an encouraging sign. It ties a career high she set in a win over Columbia last year, as she looks to improve on what was a breakout sophomore campaign. The junior increased her goal tally by 17 and at the moment, she’s on pace to break last season’s total by four goals.
Lia LaPrise hasn’t been nearly as dynamic so far this year, but there’s still plenty of time for her to turn the burners on. She collected a goal and three assists Saturday, both season highs on the way to victory. With Sydney Watson gone, this is LaPrise’s time to shine, as it’s her team. So far, the outcomes of the games have generally gone to plan, but it would be encouraging to see the graduate student put up some bigger numbers ahead of the Huskies matchups against a pair of New England state schools.
The Huskies came out with a quick score from Lafountain in the opening minute, but were then a bit stuck on offense. They gave up a score to SJU’s Maggie Davidson to tie things at one, the moment where things started to click for Connecticut. Lafountain and Kaitlyn Tartaglione went back to back, and Sarah Groark narrowed things to just a single score for the Hawks entering the second quarter.
The middle two quarters were all Huskies as they notched a 3-0 frame thanks to goals from Shaffer, Lafountain and LaPrise. If the second seemed good, the third was even more prolific for the Huskies. Grace Coon got a goal and Shaffer, Tartaglione and Sophie Sorenson followed to cap off a prolific 8-0 run over a 36 minute stretch.
The final quarter opened with three straight scores from the Hawks, but it was evident that things were all but wrapped up. Lauren Barry netted a pair to close the game out as the Huskies finished the contest out with a 14-7 victory.
Connecticut will get a chance to push their record up to 3-1 at home against the 1-2 New Hampshire Wildcats on Monday. The game was initially scheduled for Tuesday, but weather complications pushed it up to Monday at 3 p.m. It’s a very winnable game against a team that’s been struggling to find their footing as of late.