Jeffs Win School-Record 15th With 20-10 Victory over Wellesley in NCAA Regionals

May 12, 2001

AMHERST, Massachusetts - The Amherst College women's lacrosse team, the number-two seed in the 2001 NCAA Division III women's lacrosse tournament, received five goals each from senior co-captain Kristin Osborn (Morristown, NJ) and sophomore Abby Ouimet (Hatfield, MA) en route to a season-high 20 goals in a 20-10 victory over Wellesley in NCAA Regional Semifinal action on Hitchcock Field on Saturday. The Jeffs, who set a new school record with their 15th win of the season, opened up leads of 18-3 and 19-4 in the second half, before a late Wellesley surge accounted for the final 10-goal margin. 

"We were focused on coming out and opening each half strong to make sure that we set the tone for the game, and I think we did that," said Amherst Head Coach Chris Paradis. The Jeffs certainly set the tone in the first half, taking an early 3-1 lead on goals from senior Sarah Scheessele (Pittsburgh, PA), Ouimet and Osborn, before a goal from Wellesley sophomore Margot Conrad (Ardmore, PA) closed the visitors to 3-2 at the 16:42-mark of the first. After the Conrad goal, however, the Jeffs exploded, rattling off eight unanswered goals over the next nine minutes. 

Osborn started the run with a conversion of a centering pass from first-year Allison Aldrich (Cornwall, VT), breaking her own single-season school scoring record with her 52nd goal of the season. Five different Amherst players scored the next five goals of the game for a 9-2 Jeff lead, before Ouimet added her third goal of the half at 8:44 for a 10-2 Amherst edge. Sophomore Mary Kate Allen (Springfield, MA), who scored earlier in the run, capped the 8-0 surge with a free-position conversion at 6:08, before Wellesley sophomore Grace Tsan (Delmar, NY) stopped the bleeding with her second goal of the game with 4:15 left before halftime. 

The Jeffs had one more goal in them, and Ouimet's fourth goal with 22 seconds left gave the hosts a 12-3 lead heading into the break, in similar fashion to the Jeffs' 8-2 halftime edge when the teams met in Amherst on April 12. In that game, the Jeffs scored the first five goals of the second half before Wellesley went on a run. History repeated itself on Saturday, with the Jeffs opening the second period with six straight scores. 

Aldrich, who has been more of a presence down the stretch for the Jeffs, fired a one-hopper past first-year Wellesley goalie Alissa Gordon (Sudbury, MA) for a 13-3 Amherst lead just 24 seconds after halftime, and Osborn added her fourth goal of the game 1:01 later for an 11-goal Jeff cushion. Ouimet tallied her fifth of the contest 54 seconds after Osborn's goal, and Scheessele added her third goal of the game at 24:03 as the Jeffs widened their lead to 16-3. Junior Meg Martin (Longmeadow, MA) and Osborn scored twice in a stretch of 1:33 to give the hosts an 18-3 advantage at the 21:35-mark, and after a goal from Wellesley sophomore Lisa Andruszkiewicz (Beverly, MA), Jeff junior Meg Hely (Westfield, NJ) opened up a 19-4 Amherst lead with 13:21 left in the game. 

With most of Amherst's starters on the bench, Wellesley took over after the goal from Hely, erupting for the game's next five goals, including four goals in a span of 1:32. Andruszkiewicz started the run with a goal in transition at the 12:58-mark, and Tsan, who scored three goals and had two assists in Wellesley's 17-8 loss to Amherst on April 12, scored 17 seconds later for Wellesley's sixth goal of the afternoon. Junior Claudia Veritas (Goffstown, NH), who entered the game as Wellesley's leading scorer but was frustrated all afternoon by the Jeffs, finally got into the scoring column at 11:39, and Tsan scored off the ensuing draw, just 13 seconds later, to cut the Amherst lead to 19-8. Tsan scored again at 5:32 to cap the run, before Martin stopped the bleeding one minute later with her second goal of the half, capping the scoring at 20-10. 

"We've seen Wellesley before and we knew they'd make a run," said Paradis. "We were fine, although it's always a little nerve-wracking when a team's coming back at you. I give Wellesley a lot of credit. They're an excellent team and they certainly made a great run in the second half." 

For the game, the Jeffs outshot Wellesley 34-24, with sophomore Brooke Diamond (Longmeadow, MA) going the distance in goal, making 11 saves on the afternoon. Osborn finished with five goals and two assists, bringing her to 55 goals and 21 assists on the season, four points shy of her own single-season point record set last year. Ouimet added five goals and one assist, Scheessele finished with three goals, sophomore Laura Schifter (Washington, DC) tallied three assists, and Allen and Martin finished with two goals each in the Jeffs' record-setting 15th win of the season. The previous record for wins was 14, set during Amherst's run to the NCAA championship game in 1999. 

For Wellesley, who finished their season at 14-4, Tsan led the way with five goals, while Andruszkiewicz was the only other multiple goal-scorer, finishing with a pair. Veritas added a goal and an assist, and Godron and first-year starter Ashleigh Korves (Riva, MD) combined in goal to post nine saves. The Jeffs, who improve to 15-2, will face Ithaca College, the seventh-seeded team in the 2001 NCAA Tournament, in Sunday's 1:00 p.m. regional championship on Hitchcock Field. The winner of Sunday's game advances to next weekend's Final Four in Baltimore, Maryland.

Saturday, May 12, 2001     1     2   --   F
Wellesley College (14-4)   3     7   --   10
#2 Amherst College (15-2)   12     8   --   20

AC - Kristin Osborn 5, Abby Ouimet 5, Sarah Scheessele 3, Mary Kate Allen 2, Meg Martin 2, Allison Aldrich, Erin Beaumont, Meg Hely; 
WC - Grace Tsan 5, Lisa Andruszkiewicz 2, Christin Bracken, Margot Conrad, Claudia Veritas; 

AC - Laura Schifter 3, Osborn 2, Aldrich, Beaumont, Ouimet, Scheessele; 
WC - Laura Bender, Veritas; 

AC - Brooke Diamond, 11 saves (10 ga, 60:00); 
WC - Ashleigh Korves, 6 saves (11 ga, 41:42), Alissa Gordon, 3 saves (9 ga, 18:18); 

Shots: AC 34, WC 24;
Ground Balls: AC 23, WC 18;
Turnovers: AC 20, WC 20;
Draw Controls: AC 17, WC 13;
Fouls: AC 13, WC 18;
Cards: AC 1, Jenny Rossman (Yellow, 2-9:14);