The Adelphi women’s lacrosse team boasted a high-octane offense in midseason form in the season opener on Saturday afternoon.
The Panthers, the top-ranked team in Division II, routed No. 15 Grand Valley State, 16-6, in a neutral site contest in Lakeland, Florida.
Senior Rachel O’Brien, a former Bayport-Blue Point standout, notched a career-high eight points to lead all scorers. Her role was primarily that of facilitator, as she posted a game-high six assists (including the 100th of her career) along with two goals scored.
“They were playing a man defense,” she said. “We were doing really well back-dooring them. By working the ball around and just keeping our heads up, we figured out how to crack their defense.”
Jacqueline Jahelka (Garden City) found the back of the net a game-best five times. Rachel Aitkens (Whitehouse Station, N.J.) had three goals, with Michele Scannell (Smithtown East) and Kate Beier (West Islip) scoring two apiece. Danielle Montano (Oceanside) and Casey Zalewski (Wall, N.J.) also scored.
On the strength of a defense led by Kelly Osmulski (Summit, N.J.) and her three caused turnovers, the up-tempo Panthers offense created opportunity after opportunity.
Beier scored just 40 seconds into the game, setting the tone for a blistering offense that netted six more goals (four by Jahelka) before the Lakers scored twice.
Adelphi went into the half with a commanding 10-3 lead. Scannell scored twice within 20 seconds in the second half, extending the lead to 12-4.
“We got contributions today from a lot of people,” coach Pat McCabe said. “It’s a good sign that we can put a lot of people on the field and have them produce.” — Kenny DeJohn