Field hockey looks to Flannery, Taylor in GNAC push Reply

Brian McLoughlin – 1851 staff 

One year removed from a loss at Grellier Field to Saint Joseph’s College of Maine, the women’s field hockey team is pushing towards another Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) postseason run.  

While losing the reigning GNAC Goalkeeper of the Year Denise Landry and first team All-Conference defender Taylor Falco to graduation, the Lasers returned an offensive core with seniors Cailin Flannery, Julia Franzik, and junior Sam Taylor. 

The team carries a 12-5 record for the season, including a solid 5-0 in conference action. Behind the dynamic duo of Flannery and Taylor, the Lasers have proven to once again position themselves as a league contender.  

Previous GNAC Coach of the Year, Caitlin Connolly looks at this season differently than last year’s. “You’re going to graduate seniors every year and you’re hoping that over the course as you recruit players that athletes are growing and getting better,” said Connolly. “When we approach this year it’s who we are as a team and where do the pieces of the puzzle need to fit, and what’s our identity.”  

Blazing the trail for team identity is Flannery, who has continuously set records for the Lasers, including breaking her own personal and previous school record of 45 points in a season during Lasell’s 6-0 victory over Framingham State University on October 17. Flannery now stand as the programs all-time points leader with 172 career points, 64 goals and 44 assists.  

Not only has Flannery’s success been felt on campus, but she also sits high in multiple NCAA Division III statistics categories this year. Averaging 1.12 goals per game, she is ranked 24th in the nation, and 18th in Division III for points per game with a 2.71 average. In the GNAC, Flannery has reached a conference high in both points and goals.  

Three-time GNAC Player of the Week Taylor is second in all of Division III for assists per game with 1.02. She has 14 goals, 15 assists for 43 points this season, not far behind Flannery.  

Nationally in Division III, Lasell is in the Top 15 for three statistical categories. Lasell has averaged a 12th-best 4.12 goals per game, 13th-best 10.53 points per game and outscored their opponents a 12th-best average of 4.04 goals per game. The latter is good for second place in the GNAC, behind Saint Joseph’s College of Maine, who sits at fourth in Division III.  

Taylor mentioned the team has been having a good season so far. 

 w“We just need to keep playing the way we are and continue connecting on the field as a team and never let the other team have that momentum swing.” 

Taylor added, “We have all the skills as a unit to make it that far again, so with that comes desire and dedication. Not saying it will be easy, but we sure do stand a chance.”  

On the other end of the field, the Lasers have seen quality goalkeeping from freshman Sofia Rodriguez. Rodriguez has been honored three times with GNAC weekly honors, with one Goalkeeper of the Week nod, and two Rookie of the Week awards. The freshman goalkeeper has played in nine games and boasts an impressive .722 save percentage behind 65 career saves this season.  

“[The goalies] have been working really hard and our defense is really strong in front of our goalkeepers. I think the hiring of a goal-tending coach has made a huge difference for them” said coach Connolly. 

Lasell will wrap up the regular season on Wednesday, October 24 when they travel to Saint Joe’s of Maine for a battle to claim the GNAC regular season title, and home field advantage in the GNAC Tournament.

Women’s soccer shoots to continue historic run Reply

Brian McLoughlin1851 staff

Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines dominant as, “commanding, controlling, or prevailing over all others.” The women’s soccer team has been just that over the past nine seasons.  

In 2010, women’s soccer captured the program’s first Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Championship. Jamie Harris scored the lone goal in the 88th minute to knock off Norwich University 1-0. Former goalkeeper Elizabeth Stickley made two saves and completed her third consecutive shutout of the GNAC Tournament to clinch history.   

For the Lasers, more than a conference championship title is at stake this coming November. It would be continuing a legacy put in place by the many alumni that built the program into the dynasty it is today.  

The Lasers’s record stands 11-4 overall, and a perfect 10-0 in GNAC competition. The team is led by seniors Carly Zdanek, Erika Badger, Morgan Pinksten, Emma Papile and Sabrina Morais, who have contributed to victories the past three years.  

According to head coach Vito La Francesca, “These girls have been with us for four years, involved in three GNAC Championships. Each one has brought a different skillset, different personality to the program, and it has all come together to lead us to where we are now.”  

Zdanek leads the Lasers in scoring, boasting 10 goals and one assist for a team-high of 21 points. The reigning United Soccer Coaches Third-Team All-American and GNAC Offensive Player of the Year recently joined the 100 points club on Wednesday, Oct. 3, during a 3-2 victory over Saint Joseph’s College of Maine. 

Badger earned GNAC Player of the Week honors the week of Oct. 1, as she added two goals and one assist to her season total of eight goals and two assists. Morias and Pinksten continue to solidify the midfield and have three and two goals respectfully this season, while Papile tallied one goal.  

After graduating GNAC Goalkeeper of the Year in Sarah LaClair, the Lasers turned to freshman Angela Sanzari to fill the role. Sanzari earned GNAC Goalkeeper of the Week earlier in the 2018 season and holds a .839 save percentage with 26 recorded saves. At .74%, Sanzari is ranked second in the conference for goals against average. 

While the team moves forward in the season, they edge closer to playoffs. Based on the competitiveness in the GNAC, La Francresca said, “I think anyone can beat anybody in this league. With that I believe we need to have stronger practices to get us into a position to have success.” He ended saying, “these girls are hungry. “  

The Lasers will close out the regular season on Wednesday, October 24 on the road at Emmanuel College. Already securing the GNAC regular season title, the Lasers will host throughout the GNAC Tournament as they attempt to clinch a ninth straight title.

Women’s basketball in a good place despite low records Reply

By Kyle Schroeder 1851 Staff 

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Despite their losses, women’s basketball always stands united.  Photo courtesy of Jackie Colombie

It has been a tough two years for the women’s basketball team in terms of their record. The Lasers finished this season 5-20 after a 5-19 record the previous season. In the 2015-16 season, they went a respectable 12-14. The question that arises is: what caused this drop off? The answer is something every interscholastic and collegiate sports program deals with: the loss of key senior contributors.

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Tiezzi sets career milestone Reply

By Seán McGlone – Editor-in-Chief

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Senior setter Taylor Tiezzi (4) celebrates with her teammates during a match. Photo courtesy of Taylor Tiezzi.

During a game against Sage College on Setember 30, senior setter Taylor Tiezzi set a ball to junior outside hitter Olivia Addington. As Addington hit the ball down for a kill, the gym at Skidmore College went silent as the team realized – this was Tiezzi’s 2,500th career assist.

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Field hockey rises to top of GNAC Reply

By Brian Cohen – 1851 Staff 

The Lasell College Women’s Field Hockey team has taken the GNAC by storm this season posting a 7-0 conference record thus far. The Lasers have a 14-3 overall record including eight of those victories coming on their home field and they are playing with tremendous confidence.

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