PREVIEW: Lasell Women's Soccer Meets Monks Again in GNAC Semifinal
Newton, MA (10/31/2017) — NEWTON, Mass. (10/30/17) -- The Lasell College women's soccer team will host the Monks of Saint Joseph's College of Maine on Tuesday, October 31 at 2:30 p.m. in a Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Semifinal showdown.
The Lasers advance to their eighth straight GNAC semifinal after defeating Suffolk 3-1 Saturday afternoon, avenging their 2-0 regular season loss to the Rams.
Carly Zdanek (Newton, N.J.) continued her successful junior campaign in the Quarterfinals, knocking in two goals in the victory. Caitlin Rotonnelli (Meredith, N.H.) contributed her team second-best seventh goal of the season in 53rd minute, giving the Lasers insurance early in the second half.
On September 23, Lasell defeated the Monks at Taylor Field 1-0, improving to above .500 for the first time in 2017 after two season opening losses to #6 Brandeis and Keene State. In the victory, Zdanek scored the lone goal, one of her five game-winners this season, in the 21st minute from outside the box to secure the victory.
The Lasers were held to only one goal in the regular season match-up behind Brooke Troup's (East Bridgewater, Mass.) two saves. Saint Joseph's merely outshot the Lasers 13-12 in the loss, as Lasers senior goalkeeper Sarah LaClair (Belchertown, Mass.) made seven saves enroute to the shutout.
In 2016, the top-seeded Lasers also hosted fourth-seed Saint Joseph's Maine in the GNAC Semifinal, defeating the upset minded Monks 5-1, including four unanswered second half goals by the Lasers.
Saint Joseph's will look for a big performance from junior Haley DeGraca (Saco, Maine), who leads the Monks with 37 points, including 17 goals. Emily DeLuca (Gorham, Maine) and Brenna Smith (Maynard, Mass.) round out the top three scorers for Saint Joseph's with five goals apiece.
LaClair and Troup come into the conference semifinal with an identical .791 save percentage, tied for fifth best in the GNAC. LaClair has allowed the second-least goals among conference opponents, and has recorded 53 saves this season, 30 coming in conference games.
Both GNAC semifinals will take place on Tuesday October 31, with the winner's of both contests advancing to the conference championship on Saturday November 4th.
The semifinal is set to kick-off at 2:30p.m. from Taylor Field at Lasell College, and can be viewed live at https://portal.stretchinternet.com/lasell/.