Burrall '19 spectacular in goal in women's lacrosse setback

Hannah Burrall '19 (#01) and Kara Pooley '19 (Josh McKee photo)
Hannah Burrall '19 (#01) and Kara Pooley '19 (Josh McKee photo)

Wesleyan University rallied from a two-goal deficit in the final 11 minutes and the nationally ranked No. 8 Cardinals edged the Hamilton College Continentals 6-5 in a NESCAC thriller at Hamilton's Steuben Field on Saturday afternoon.

The Continentals (5-9, 2-8 NESCAC) have lost their last two games by a goal at home against a ranked opponent. Hamilton was successful on all 25 of its clear attempts.

Wesleyan (12-2, 7-2) extended its win streak to three games as the Cardinals played their first unranked opponent since March 27. Wesleyan is in third place in the NESCAC standings with one conference game remaining.

Hannah Burrall '19 did her best to keep the Continentals in the game as the goaltender finished one save shy of her career high for one game with 17. Burrall moved into fourth place on the program's all-time list with 429 career stops. She leads the conference with 143 saves and is fourth with a .498 save percentage. 

Honor Gabriel '21 led the Hamilton offense with two goals and has 13 this year. Kara Pooley '19 chipped in a goal and an assist and added four ground balls, four caused turnovers and two draw controls. Gabby O'Brien '19 scooped up three ground balls and Lauren Hamilton '22 and Alyssa Bonanno '21 caused two turnovers apiece.

Sydney Prokupek finished with a goal and two assists and figured in all three of the Cardinals' last three goals. Abigail Horst contributed two goals and four draw controls, Kat Cucullo picked up five ground balls and Jordan Ansell had four. Abby Manning won four draws and Caroline Sgaglione and Julia Gretsky caused two turnovers apiece. Allegra Grant made 13 saves.

Prokupec pulled Wesleyan within 5-4 on her unassisted goal with 10:18 left in the second half. She fed Horst for the game-tying goal with 7:12 remaining and passed to Manning for the game-winner with 3:40 to go. The Continentals' last chance to tie the score came with 1:36 left when Pooley's free-position shot was stopped by Grant and the Cardinals' Case Tucker picked up the loose ball.

Hamilton took a 4-0 lead after neither team scored for the opening 16 minutes of the first half. Tessa Ryan '21 passed down to Gabriel to the left of the goal, Gabriel moved a few feet to her right and shot high into the back of the net from five yards out with 13:56 remaining. Skyler Simson '20 made it a two-goal lead with 12:21 to go after she received a short pass from Pooley, turned and shot inside the center of the fan from eight yards out.

Olivia Seymour '22 scored the Continentals' third goal with 9:46 left. Charlotte Wynn '20 drove towards the goal and passed just as she reached the edge of the fan to Seymour who was cutting to the middle of the fan. Seymour fired a right-handed shot past Grant from seven yards out. Gabriel scored again just 36 seconds later right after a good clear by Hamilton. Eva Abel '22 passed from outside the arc to Gabriel who was positioned just to the right of the goal. Gabriel turned to her right and rifled a shot from point-blank range.

The Continentals led 4-2 at the break and Pooley's free-position goal with 18:06 remaining gave them a 5-3 cushion. Pooley's goal was the only one Hamilton scored in the last 39 minutes.

Pooley, O'Brien, Burrall, Alex Hendry '19, Tatiana Bradley '19, Maya Cote '19 and Sarah Kaiser '19 were honored after the game with a senior recognition ceremony.

The Continentals wrap up the 2019 season with a non-conference game at Ithaca College (10-5 overall) on Wednesday, April 24 at 5 p.m.