The LIU Post women's lacrosse team raced through an undefeated regular season, but the defending Division II champion Pioneers do not expect a free pass in the NCAA Tournament. Beating Stonehill, 15-9, in a quarterfinal game Saturday provided Post with a rare new experience: It was tested.
"They're a good team, so they're expected to have some runs and never give up," said Post junior attack Jackie Sileo, who totaled 12 points on six goals and six assists. "We did a good job of backing their intensity and coming out on top."
Post (18-0), which meets Adelphi in a national semifinal Saturday in Owings Mills, Md., won its first 17 games by an average of 11 goals, several by many more. "We knew this game was going to be a game," coach Meghan McNamara said. "It's NCAA, you got nothing to lose, you're going to come and play. That's our outlook."
When Kayla Green scored her 64th goal of the season with 22:44 left in the first half, Stonehill actually took a 3-2 lead. Post then scored seven straight goals, going up 9-3, but Stonehill scored twice and it was 9-5.
"This was a close game, it was hard fought," McNamara said, "Stonehill was not going to give up. It was a tough game."
Stonehill (13-7) received four goals from Kelsey Reilly.
Stonehill could get no closer than four goals in the second half as Sileo scored three times, giving her 55 for the season. She leads the nation with 115 assists.
Ashley Olen had six goals and now has 85. Sileo and Olsen are the leaders, but it doesn't stop there. Abbie Ross, with three against Stonehill, has 55 goals, Katie Rotan 38 and Samantha Losco 33. "We don't think we have to have five goals and five assists every game for our team to win," Sileo said. "We just loved to play, so it just happens."
Olen added: "It's not just me and Jackie. It's a great team, not just two people."
Ultimately, McNamara expects Post to prevail and win another national title, saying: "We have the experience, we have the wisdom, and we have the competitive nature behind us to know you have to show up and play."
Post men lose. Andrew Chadderdon scored 1:02 into sudden death, giving Le Moyne (16-2) a 9-8 victory over Post (11-3) in an NCAA quarterfinal game. Connor Drost's third goal of the game had tied the score for Post with 31 seconds left in regulation. The second half was delayed two hours by lightning in the Brookville area.