Rock rolls over West Virginia Wesleyan with 19-3 blowout

Published by adviser, Author: Jordyn Bennett - Assistant Sports Editor, Date: March 31, 2017
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Rock lacrosse (7-0, 3-0) continues its undefeated season as they dominated a young West Virginia Wesleyan College (1-6, 0-0) in a 19-3 victory on Tuesday afternoon.

Head coach Emily Hopkins said that in the past her team would play down to its level of competition, but the team really changed its focus this year.

“Yesterday was really big for us,” Hopkins said Wednesday afternoon. “It was a real confidence booster for us.”

While the Bobcats looked as if they would give SRU some real competition after scoring the opening goal of the game, it would be the only lead they would have. West Virginia Wesleyan was overwhelmed by The Rock’s offensive attack.

SRU would score seven unanswered goals before the Bobcats would respond. Wesleyan would score its second goal with a little over five minutes remaining in the first half before The Rock’s domination would continue scoring 10 goals straight.

Thirteen SRU athletes had goals, and two more had some contribution to goals with an assist. Hopkins and assistant coach Tommy Kelly agreed that the team’s ability to spread the ball around and not focus on one player is what is making them so good.

“If you look at the conference stats wise, no individual sticks out,” Kelly said. “We have more of a team effort.”

Even with a team effort, Hopkins was able to point out senior attacker Caitlynn Palladino, junior attacker Bre Vodde and redshirt sophomore Tia Torchia as the team’s offensive leaders. The trio has 17, 16 and 14 goals respectively. Palladino also leads the team in assist with seven.

Torchia is gradually catching up to Palladino and Vodde with her second game scoring three goals in a row.  Redshirt junior Ally Culhane also had three goals. Palladino had two goals of her own and an assist. Freshman midfielder Kelsey Thoensen had two also. Goalies junior Emily Bitka and Freshman Tori Greco each had four saves.

The Bobcats sophomore attacker Madison Duvall lead the team with two goals, and sophomore midfielder Samantha Pappas had one.

While the Green and White dominated the Bobcats, Coach Hopkins said that if the team wants to continue its win streak it really needs to improve on ground balls.

“We’re trying to win the 50/50 battle,” Hopkins said. “We haven’t been too successful and we’re still winning, so that’s good, but we are looking to improve on that.”

Hopkins and The Rock will need that improvement as their next opponent will give them more competition than the Bobcats.

The Rock reenters conference play on Saturday, April 1 at 5 p.m. as they travel across the state to take on Bloomsburg University (5-3, 2-2).

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