Using an overpowering first half to build a 14-4 lead, Wesleyan coasted to a 19-10 victory over Manhattanville Tues., March 20 in the first-ever meeting of the teams. Wesleyan returned to conference action in its next start Sat., March 24 with a trip to Middlebury. There the Panthers prevailed, 19-6.
Against Manhattanville, the Cardinals pushed out to a substantial 13-1 lead just 20:14 into the contest. Catherine Taibi '13 (#6, right-side photo) netted three of the team's opening 10 goals while Kayla Ellman '13 and Maddy Coulter '14 (#3, left-side photo) each had a pair. Taibi finished the game with a team-high four goals while Coulter had a career-best five points on two goals and three assists. Wesleyan substituted freely in the contest as all available 25 players saw action and starting keeper Maggie Drowica '12 was spelled by Lydia Kring '13 for the second half. Drowica saw just eight shots in her 30 minutes and picked up two saves as Manhattanville scored four of the final five goals of the period. Kring allowed five goals and posted one saves over her half of action.
Adding to the Wesleyan scoring list was Audrey Le '15, who had a four-point game with two goals and two assists. Michele Drossner '14 had a goal and two assists for a three-point outing.
Middlebury, ranked seventh nationally, rolled out to a 13-2 lead at halftime after scoring nine of the opening 10 goals for a 9-1 edge less than 20 minutes into the contest. After Middlebury, which improved to 12-0 all-time vs. Wesleyan, upped the gap to 16-2 in the second period, Wesleyan netted four of the final seven goals as Kaylin Berger '13 added her second of the game and Ellman and Coulter both picked up a marker as well. Berger Leads the squad with 14 goals and Ellman is right behind with 12. Drowica ended the game with seven saves.
Wesleyan was back on the field with a home game against Babson Tues., March 27. Babson pushed out to a 4-1 lead 13:38 into the game and Wesleyan never got closer than two as the Beavers went on to claim a 15-9 victory. Wesleyan returns to action Thurs., March 29, hosting in-state rival Western Connecticut.
The Beavers upped it to a 6-1 margin with 7:16 left in the first half. Wesleyan netted the final three goals of the period to narrow the difference at halftime to 6-4. Taibi, Ellman and Kring scored in a span of 3:52 in the Cardinals strongest thrust of the afternoon and they all ended the game with two goals for Wesleyan, as did Liz Chabot '12. Ellman tied for the team lead in goals this year with 14.
When Babson opened the second half with a 6-2 run, the lead stood at six goals, 12-6, with 20:59 left. When Babson converted a free-position shot at the 12:49, the margin was 14-7, the largest difference in the contest. Babson made good on three of six free-position attempts in the game while Wesleyan was good on two of six tries.
In net, Drowica stopped eight shots for the Cardinals. Babson now leads in the overall series with Wesleyan, 5-4.