Despite a warm and sunny February afternoon in Poughkeepsie, Marist women’s lacrosse suffered a grueling 7-17 loss to the Rutgers Scarlet Knights on Saturday.
History has not been on the Red Foxes side as the Scarlet Knights have won all four times the two colleges matched up.
Looking for revenge after suffering a loss last February to Rutgers 9-13, the Red Foxes opened things up with a goal as junior attack, Kelly George tallied her fourth of the season. A couple of minutes later the Scarlet Knights took the lead, scoring three goals in less than a minute.
A one-sided affair, Rutgers dominated from start to finish. The junior attack, Taralyn Naslonski led the Scarlet Knights tallying four goals in the first half, six overall. At the end of the first half, Rutgers led Marist 10-3.
Searching for a comeback in the second half, the Red Foxes looked to accomplish no easy task. Rutger’s aggressive approach, however, only helped them build their lead. The Scarlet Knights shot a remarkable 79 percent overall, 84 percent in the first half and 75 in the second. The Marist defense certainly had their work cut out for them playing a large Big Ten school.
Rutgers had nine different players record a goal in the contest. Led by Taralyn Naslonski, Hannah Hollingsworth, Julia Lytle, Samantha Budd, Cassidy Spilis, Camryn Rogers, Jordan Drab, Ashly Campo, Dakota Pastore all joined along as well. Even though she did not record a goal, sophomore Marin Hartshorn had four assists, playing a crucial role in these goals occurring.
Turnovers have played a vital role in losses this season for the Red Foxes. Totaling 14 or more turnovers in every game so far is something head Coach Jessica Wilkinson wants to improve upon moving forward. “I think when you compete against a really aggressive and big team you’re going to get some pressure and unfortunately we came up a bit short today. We were hoping that by the fourth game we would be able to get used to that a little bit. We will just have to depend on a lot more practices of those heavy types of pressure situations for us to continue to learn from,” said Wilkinson.
However, there were a couple of bright spots for Marist. Samantha Mehalick recorded two goals. The senior who has accomplished almost every accolade has her eyes set on one more. Looking to break the All-Time Points record at Marist, she inched her way closer after this contest. Her two goals moved her up to third all-time with 203 points. 2016 graduate, Allison Gionata currently holds the record with 250. Attack Kelly George finished with two goals and recorded one assist. George moved up to 7th all-time in assists with 58. Junior midfielder, Alexandra Di Chiara recorded two goals as well.
Despite falling to 0-4 on the season, Marist has faced high-quality opponents. This was not coincidental. “We purposely put a lot of good teams on our schedule early in the year, so that we can build off that and learn from them early on,” said Coach Wilkinson. While they know they could be playing better it is still early in the season with a lot to still look forward to. Coach Wilkinson believes the message going forward should be, “Keep your head up. I think we have to take away the successes during those losses. As long as the girls are keeping their heads up and seeing that progress, we are going to be putting ourselves in a good spot.”
The Red Foxes have yet to play a MAAC Conference game this season. The hope is these tough matches will sharpen them for those games later in the season. Their next game will be February 29th at home against the Binghamton Bearcats in search of their first win.
Edited by Dylan Kusmuk