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LIU Post's Sileo sets NCAA Division II lacrosse assist record

LIU Post junior Jackie Sileo makes a pass

LIU Post junior Jackie Sileo makes a pass to assist on a goal to give her team a 4-3 lead over Dowling College during the first half of an NCAA Division II women's lacrosse game at LIU Post on March 20, 2013. Credit: James Escher

LIU Post women's lacrosse star Jackie Sileo was going after the NCAA Division II record for career assists in Wednesday's game against Dowling. It wasn't clear what the mark was, so Sileo had to have a big day to make sure she entered the record books.

Top-ranked Post (6-0), the defending national champion, beat Dowling, 16-13. Sileo had four goals and six assists and even with some bookkeeping remaining, there was no doubt Sileo set the assists record. The junior attack has 210, surpassing the mark of Claire Petersen, her former teammate at Wantagh High School, who played two seasons at Adelphi and was listed as the all-time NCAA leader with 204. Adelphi has Petersen with 206 and is checking with the NCAA for a final decision.

Whatever the outcome, Sileo has the record. "I didn't know," the junior attack said of the discrepancy. Sileo's pass from behind the goal to Katie Rotan with 13:32 left in the first half broke the listed NCAA mark. With 26:16 remaining in the game, Sileo's feed to Abbie Ross, who had five goals, became her 207th assist.

"She's one of my friends, I'm very happy for her," Petersen said earlier in the week. Petersen is a senior at Division I Stony Brook University.

Said Sileo of Petersen, "She definitely taught me a lot, being able to watch her behind the net, she always had great vision I knew I wanted to be a player like that. She definitely was a powerhouse."

Sileo has 12 goals and 35 assists. "It's extremely unselfish,'' Ross said of Sileo's role. "Some people look at goals as the main important thing. It's just as equal to a goal. If she wasn't passing the ball, we wouldn't score a goal.''

Post coach Meghan McNamara said Sileo has the right ingredients for her role in the sport. "It's definitely vision, game sense and it's really understanding literally how deception and space works hand in hand with each other," she said. "Being a feeder is really an innate skill."

Dowling (4-1) had Sileo's equal in Jackie Andersen, who had five goals and five assists for the eighth-ranked Golden Lions.

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