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Alexa Mattera, Alyssa Parrella spark Hofstra lacrosse victory

Hofstra's Alexa Mattera scores against host Wagner on

Hofstra's Alexa Mattera scores against host Wagner on Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018. Credit: Patrick E. McCarthy

After a dominant start, Hofstra was put to the test in the second half Tuesday afternoon, but a strong finish secured its second victory in as many games.

Alexa Mattera had five goals and an assist, Alyssa Parrella added four goals and two assists and Carlee Ancona scored four goals to lead the visiting Pride past Wagner, 15-10, in a non-conference women’s lacrosse game. Hofstra scored seven of the game’s first eight goals but Wagner cut the lead to 10-8 midway through the second half, before the Pride closed the game on a 5-2 run.

“It was a good battle test for us,” coach Shannon Smith said. “There’s definitely a lot to improve upon but it was really hard fought and our kids faced the adversity and (stayed) mentally tough through it all.”

After Wagner (0-2) got within two goals with 15:16 left, Ancona and Drew Shapiro answered for the Pride to bring its lead to 12-8, sparking the game-closing run that also featured a pair of goals from Mattera and one from Parrella.

“We were really picking each other up when things were going south and I think that’s one thing that this team has that is really going to help us throughout,” Parrella said.

As it did in its 13-1 season-opening win over Bucknell, Hofstra translated an early possession advantage into goals on Tuesday and took an 8-4 lead into halftime.

That edge was blunted in the second half, as Hofstra won just five of the period’s 14 draw controls, after holding a 10-3 edge in the circle in the first. Pride goalie Maddie Fields prevented Wagner from taking full advantage and stopped seven shots in the second.

“Wagner put up a really good fight and was really aggressive,” Ancona said. “We’re going to see that even more in (conference play), so getting a good look at that now is really going to help us moving forward.”

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