SALISBURY, Md. – The fifth-ranked Salisbury University women's lacrosse team opened its 2017 campaign with a confident 16-9 victory over Stevenson University on Saturday afternoon at Sea Gull Stadium.
Senior Hannah Young opened her account for the Gulls at 24:17 when she converted a Gabbi Nieves pass from just outside the circle to give Salisbury the early lead. The senior All-American kicked off her senior campaign with a three goal, one assist outing.
Junior Dana King notched her first on the day a scant 40 seconds later as she buried the shot off of a diagonal run, sophomore Gabrielle Mongno was credited with the assist. King was the Gulls' leading scorer at the final whistle, getting credited with three goals and two assists for five points.
Salisbury scored the first three goals of the contest uncontested as Stevenson was unable to respond until a Brady Heher goal at 19:45. From there Stevenson strung together two more tallies to bring the game to a 3-3 tie at 16:05, getting its last two within a 48 second window.
Just as the Mustangs got the momentum, Allison Hynson put a stop to it, scoring on the possession following Stevenson's third goal. Kristen Murphy was awarded the assist on the play. Between Young's goal to start the scoring for the game and Hynson's tally not even 10 minutes later, the game had seen six goals. However, the sides settled in as the next goal did not come until 9:39 with a King free-position shot.
Hynson ended the game with two goals and one assist, while Murphy was one of three Gulls to get a hat trick, going for three goals and one assist.
The visitors got one back two minutes later to make the score 5-4 SU, but Hynson and Nieves scored 44 seconds apart with help from a Ryan Schrader draw control to end the scoring for the half with Salisbury up, 7-4. Schrader led the team with four draw controls.
Salisbury looked to put the game away early in the second half, going for the first five goals of the period less than nine minutes away from the opening draw of the half. Lindsey Wagner got the first of the half as Salisbury was awarded a free-positional shot and Hynson moved the ball over to Wagner who found the back of the net. Wagner got the start on attack and posted two goals on just two shots and nabbed three draw controls.
The 5-0 spurt was capped at 21:43 when Nieves had the ball behind the cage and found King at the top of the zone who put it home to give Salisbury a 12-4 advantage.
Stevenson stopped the run to make it 12-5 but the rest of the game they could not string together more than one goal with a Salisbury response as the team's went back-and-forth for each of their last four goals on the day.
The highlight of the second half for the Gulls was the first career goal for freshman Abigail Single. Single cut from the top of the fan down to the crease and Madelyn Manzoni rewarded the well-timed cutter with a pass just off her ear that Single put away.
The starting defense of Kayla Miller, Kacy Koolage, and Margaret Lenz all excelled as the Mustangs only mustered up 21 shots and went 0-for-8 on free-position shots. Salisbury also held the edge in groundballs, getting 14 to the visitors six.
Salisbury will return to action on Saturday, February 25 with a road contest against the Catholic University of America. That game is set for 1 p.m.