Vestal, NY (WBNG Binghamton)
Senior Katherine Hunsberger netted a game-high five goals to lead the Binghamton women’s lacrosse team past visiting Siena 10-7 for the Bearcats’ first win of the season, Wednesday evening at the Bearcats Sports Complex. Binghamton (1-5), who never trailed in the contest, snapped a 14-game losing streak dating back to last year and gave interim head coach Stephanie Allen her first career victory.
“It’s a great feeling to see a total team effort out there today,” interim head coach Stephanie Allen said. “This game was all on the girls, though it does feel nice to get the monkey off our backs. I thought we were strong on all levels and played sound defense, especially in goal. The girls really stepped up today and stuck to the game plan.”
Binghamton scored four of its five second-half goals on free position attempts to hold off the Saints (1-7), who rallied from a halftime deficit to even the game in the final 30 minutes. Hunsberger and the Bearcats have struggled from the eight-meter all season, converting just 8-of-28 attempts, but found a successful formula against Siena. Binghamton went 5-for-7 on free position attempts, including a perfect 2-for-2 by Hunsberger.
Clinging to a minimal halftime lead, Binghamton surrendered the second half’s first two goals as Siena evened the game at five. Unfazed by the momentum swing, the Bearcats answered with three straight free position goals. Hunsberger, who netted her eighth career hat trick, scored the first eight-meter attempt as she beat the goalie with a nice stick fake to give BU a 6-5 lead with 22:04 to play. Junior-transfer Angela Vespa and Sophie Racciatti netted the next two free position goals just three minutes apart to extend Binghamton’s lead to three. The Bearcats would not look back from there.
Siena attempted to chip away at BU’s lead netting a goal with 12:36 remaining, but senior Casey Bulman connected on Binghamton’s final free position attempt to push the lead back to three with just over ten minutes to go. Binghamton won five second-half draw controls and the offense was able to chew clock in the final minutes.
Freshman goalie Erin McNulty played all 60 minutes for the Bearcats to pick up her first collegiate win. McNulty made 10 saves and denied both of Siena’s free position attempts.
In the first half, Binghamton jumped out to a 2-0 lead thanks to goals by Hunsberger and senior attack Kimberly McGeever. However, Siena quickly responded with a pair of goals to knot the game at two at the 19:52 mark. A 3-0 Binghamton run sparked by a Racciatti goal on a perfect feed from Vespa pushed the margin to three, 5-2, with 5:27 to go in the half. A late Siena goal trimmed the deficit to two as the teams headed into the break.
Siena outshot Binghamton 20-18 and picked up more ground balls (15-14), but the Bearcats dominated the draw circle (12-of-19) to control possession throughout. Each team committed ten turnovers, a season-low for the Bearcats.
Binghamton travels to nearby Hamilton, N.Y. for a matchup with Colgate on Tuesday, March 26 at 4 p.m. The Bearcats knocked off the Raiders 16-11 at home last year. BU is 2-3 all-time against Colgate.
(Courtesy: BU Athletics)