SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. - Junior midfielder Sydney Lambert posted a game-best three goals in leading Westfield State University to a 7-3 victory over Mount Holyoke College on Tuesday evening. It marked a season-opening victory for the Owls, while the Lyons slip to 1-3 on the young season.
Lambert (Hanover, Mass./Hanover) got things off to a quick start for the visiting Owls, connecting on an unassisted tally on a perfect shot down the middle past Lyons' keeper Mia Wysocki (Longmeadow, Mass./Longmeadow) less than two minutes in.
Mount Holyoke evened the score three minutes later as junior attack Deyscha Smith (Boston, Mass./Academy of the Pacific Rim) converted on the free position. Despite the momentum, MHC saw the Owls quickly strike back as Lambert scored a free position of her own at 25:13. Junior defender Shannon Gillis (Norwood, Mass./Norwood) then made an outstanding play at 22:14, stealing the ball mid-air on a Lyons' clear. She doubled back to go 1-on-1 with Wysocki, powering a low shot in for the 3-1 advantage.
Westfield State gained the three-goal lead (4-1) with just over 16 minutes to play on a score from junior middie Marissa Nimeskern (Hanover, Mass./Hanover), but the Lyons closed out the scoring in the half, edging the gap to 4-2 after Smith fired a quick pass from the left post across the mouth to first year attack Julia Klein (West Hartford, Conn./Northwest Catholic) for the one-timer into the right corner.
Lambert added her third goal less than six minutes into the second half of action and senior attack Brooke Williams (Wilbraham, Mass./Minnechaug) widened the advantage to 5-2 off and outstanding feed from classmate Samantha Coyle (Weymouth, Mass./Weymouth) deep in the zone.
MHC pulled back to within three (6-3) as senior midfielder Kaitlin Braz (Tolland, Conn./East Catholic) notched a score on the free position, but the Owls grabbed a free position goal of their own to close out the scoring on a nice shot from junior attack Alexa Tonelli (Shrewsbury, Mass./Shrewsbury).
In addition to her three goals, Lambert also added a ground ball and three draw controls. Nimeskern posted three ground balls, two draw controls and a caused turnover, while Gillis added a game-best three caused turnovers.
For Mount Holyoke, Braz recorded a game-high six ground balls with three draw controls and a game-best three caused turnovers. Sophomore midfielder Julianna Rankin (Annapolis, Md./Annapolis) recorded four ground balls with a caused turnover.
In goal, Owls junior Maria Woodall (Norfolk, Mass./King Phillip) recorded nine saves in victory, while Wysocki stopped 14 shots for the Lyons.
Westfield State owned a 30-19 advantage in shots, while also recording a 32-29 edge in ground balls. The Owls were near perfect on the clear with a 22-29 margin, while Mount Holyoke owned the advantage in draw controls, 7-5.
The Lyons are now idle until March 14 when it travels to Colorado Springs, Colo., for a pair of Spring Training Trip games. MHC will face RPI in the first match on the 14th at 1pm ET (11am MT), before taking on host Colorado College on Friday at 1pm ET (11am MT). Westfield State returns to action on Friday at Western New England for a 4pm contest.