The Binghamton women’s lacrosse team hosted UMBC on Saturday afternoon, in its first game of America East (AE) play. In the 2022 season, BU defeated UMBC 20-14 in a high-scoring affair. The Bearcats continued the pattern, forcing another matchup full of goals, defeating the Retrievers 18-13 and extending their winning streak to four games, a program best.
“Really proud of this team,” said Binghamton head coach Stephanie Allen. “UMBC is a very talented group, and we knew that we were gonna have our work cut out for us today. More than anything, I’m proud of our draw crew … our offense had an outstanding day.”
After winning the first draw control, UMBC (6-3, 0-1 AE) got on the board less than a minute into the match to take an early lead. However, BU (6-4, 1-0 AE) quickly responded as sophomore midfielder Abigail Carroll found the back of the net, tying the score at one. Not long after, she scored another two goals to put Binghamton up 3-1 and complete her hat trick. Later in the frame, sophomore attack Olivia Muscolino added two goals of her own, capping off a 7-0 run by BU after the Retrievers’ opening goal. At the end of the first period, the Bearcats found themselves up 9-3.
“I was impressed with the team’s ability to find each other out there,” Allen said. “Just their knack for reading the defense, really keeping their heads up — so overall just proud of our offensive unit today.”
UMBC struck first once again in the second period, but the Bearcats answered quickly as junior midfielder Kristen Scheidel connected with sophomore attack Marisa Tancredi to make it 10-4. Tancredi scored two more goals in the frame, completing her hat trick. Both teams went back and forth for the remainder of the period as BU continued to lead the Retrievers 14-8 entering halftime.
“I think we’ve had a pretty steady and consistent performance defensively,” Allen said. “Today, probably not our best day on that side of the ball, but we came up with stops when we really needed it, especially in the fourth quarter.”
Coming out of the break, UMBC got the scoring started yet again, converting consecutive goals to cut its deficit to four. The third period saw less offense as BU was outscored by the Retrievers 4-1. The Bearcat defense struggled toward the end of the quarter as UMBC scored two straight goals in the final five minutes to cut its deficit to just three going into the final frame.
“We’ve just got to fine-tune some stuff within our unit play,” Allen said.
Binghamton flipped the script in the final period, scoring two goals to open up the final frame, courtesy of junior midfielder Hayley Weltner and Muscolino. The Retrievers added one more goal to their total, but that would be their last score for the rest of the match. Late in the frame, Tancredi netted her fourth goal of the game as BU secured an 18-13 victory over UMBC.
“We’ve really been gelling lately and I thought the confidence they gained from the win on Wednesday really helped today’s performance,” Allen said. “Overall, I think they’re looking for each other, they’re reading the defense better and with that comes the result that you saw today,”
Carroll led all Bearcats with five goals for the second match straight, bringing her scoring total to 28 goals on the season. Muscolino and Tancredi were not far behind, scoring four of their own. In addition, Weltner broke the single-game Binghamton draw control record with 14.
“Dominating performance by [Weltner],” Allen said. “Just really proud of her and the skill set that she’s been able to fine-tune and show up with on game day. It’s good to take care of the home games and get one under our belt … today was a good start to the conference season.”
Binghamton is slated to face UNH in its second AE matchup on Saturday, March 25. First draw control is set for 1 p.m. at the Wildcat Stadium in Durham, New Hampshire.