Lacrosse Falls to Johnson & Wales, 20-5, in GNAC Tournament Semifinals

Simmons University lacrosse players Molly Reinhold '21 and Mallory Cottam '19

PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- The fifth-seeded Simmons University women's lacrosse team was defeated by host number one seeded Johnson & Wales University, 20-5, this evening in the Great Northeast Athletic Conference Championship Tournament Semifinals at Scotts Miracle-Gro Field in Providence, R.I. The Sharks finish their season with a 10-7 record, while the Wildcats improve to 15-4 and will host second-seeded Regis (Mass.) on Saturday, May 4 at 1:00 p.m. in their fourth straight GNAC Championship match. Regis defeated the number three seed Lasell College, 15-14.

Simmons ends its season tied for the school record for victories, while first year Head Coach Molly Devilbiss wins the most games of any rookie lacrosse coach in school history and becomes just the second coach in school annals to post a winning record in her initial campaign.

Johnson & Wales dominated possession for the match, winning 18 of 26 draws, while owning a 42-12 shot advantage and held the Sharks to just three shots in the second half. 

Senior midfielder Mallory Cottam (Hope, R.I.) netted a pair of goals to go with four draw controls, a ground ball and a caused turnover. She finished the season with 58 points, including 44 goals. Sophomore midfielder Molly Reinhold (Mystic, Conn.) also scored two goals and added a pair of ground balls, a draw control and a caused turnover and ended the campaign with a sophomore school record for points (66) and goals (52). Senior Elena Bragg (Belmont, Mass.) registered a marker and won a pair of draws, while classmate Missie Maiewski (Northampton, Mass.) tallied an assist to give her 50 points for the year as the third Shark with 50 or more points to match the 2017 season as the only other year that Simmons has boasted a trio of 50-point scorers. Sophomore goalie Cat Cross (Beverly, Mass.) recorded 14 saves for the Sharks.

Senior midfielder Allison Pazienski (New Hyde Park, N.Y.) scored six goals and became the Wildcats all-time leading goal scorer with 228. Junior midfielder Maria Patane (Greenwich, N.Y.) tallied seven points, including two goals, while sophomore midfielder Marley Medina (South Hadley, Mass.) scored four times to go with two assists and four draw controls. Sophomore attacker Dani Lydecker (Valley Cottage, N.Y.) netted three goals in addition to an assist, eight draw controls, two ground balls and a pair of caused turnovers.

JWU began the match by scoring seven unanswered goals in just over 10 minutes of play, including three from Lydecker. Cottam put Simmons on the board at the 17:04 mark to spark the Sharks, who scored three of the next four goals, including the marker from Cottam. Pazienski countered Cottam's score, but Bragg and Reinhold each found the back of the net for Simmons to cut the deficit to a manageable, 8-3 with 11:45 showing in the opening half. 

Johnson & Wales regrouped and scored the final five goals of the period, with three from Pazienski and a pair from Patane, to take a 13-3 lead into the intermission. 

Cottam tallied the first goal of the second stanza on a free position shot at the 27:57 mark to pull the Sharks to within 13-4. The Wildcats scored the next five goals, including three from Medina, over a 10-plus minute span to effectively put the game out of reach. Reinhold scored the final marker of the night for Simmons with 10:51 showing on the second half clock to make it 18-5. Senior attacker Juliana Giello (Warwick, N.Y.) tacked on the final two scores for Johnson & Wales to finish the match.