By Miguel Gonzalez
The New Jersey Athletic Conference has no answer to the mighty women’s lacrosse team.
The Lions, ranked third in the nation according Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association Division III Coaches poll, unleashed their sheer offensive dominance and blanked Rutgers University-Camden, 17-0, on April 10 at Lions Stadium. The team followed up with another blowout performance in Mahwah, New Jersey when it defeated Ramapo College, 20-3, on Thursday, April 12.
As the wind chilled Lions Stadium on Tuesday night, the lacrosse team blew past Rutgers-Camden without letting up a single goal.
Less than 30 seconds into the match, junior midfielder Erin Harvey netted the Lions’ first goal. The team never looked back as it blasted goal after goal against a feeble defense from Rutgers-Camden. The Lions were fueled by constant possession wins from senior defender Elizabeth Morrison, who secured a whooping 11 draw controls.
Sophomore midfielder Allie Gorman and senior midfielder Amanda Muller led the explosive Lions offense as they both netted a trio of goals. Harvey and sophomore midfielder Amanda Fitzpatrick also collected a pair of goals each.
Head coach Sharon Pfluger is consistently impressed by Muller’s ambition to succeed.
“Amanda is always motivated to play at her best,” Pfluger said. “Amanda has been an integral part of our team for the past four years. She certainly leads with the most experience, yet she is extremely unselfish and encourages everyone to perform at high levels as her goal is for the team to attain its goals.”
In the final 10 minutes of the game, sophomore midfielder Chloe Pottillo scored her first goal of the season with the help of efficient passing by Fitzpatrick and Morrison. Meanwhile, junior goalkeeper Miranda Chrone stayed on top of Rutgers-Camden and saved two shots. Chrone never had so much as a close call as the Lions’ defense held its opponent to only three shots throughout the entire match.
The Lions’ next match was no different when they thrashed Ramapo College, 20-3. The College’s offense was a well-oiled machine led by junior midfielder Kathleen Jaeger, who netted a whopping seven goals. Fitzpatrick and Gorman played a significant part as well, scoring two and three goals, respectively.
Pfluger insists that the team plays as a collective squad offensively.
“I feel that every member of the offensive unit has the capability to lead the attack each game,” Pfluger said. “It is an extremely balanced unit and each individual is growing each day.”
Sophomore attacker Olivia Cleale recorded five assists and netted a pair of goals. Cleale currently leads the team in assists with a staggering 33. While Ramapo was able to get past the Lions three times, Morrison often thwarted the opponents by forcing six turnovers.
Despite dominant performances against Rutgers-Camden and Ramapo, Pfluger emphasizes on the significance of conference matches.
“The conference games are incredibly important to us,” Pfluger said. “We take one game at a time and do our best to succeed. The goal is to finish as high as possible in the conference rankings in order to compete in the conference championship tournament.”
With the victories behind them, the Lions turn over to tough business when they take on Salisbury University on Friday, April 20, at Lions Stadium at 6 p.m. Salisbury is currently the No. 1 team in the nation, according to the NWLCA Division III Coaches Poll.
The team competes in its last regular season home game against Colorado College on Sunday, April 22 at 1 p.m.