CASTLETON, Vt. – The Spartans scored the first nine goals of the contest to open conference play with a 17-4 victory over the University of Maine at Farmington on Saturday afternoon.
Castleton grabbed 15 of the 23 draw controls and outshot UMF 33-17 while recording 13 caused turnovers to improve to 2-2 overall and 1-0 in the North Atlantic Conference. The Beavers secured eight draw controls and missed all five of their free position attempts while picking up 18 ground balls as they dropped to 0-2 overall and 0-1 in the NAC.
Junior Brianna MacKay paced the offense with seven points on six goals and one assist while Mariah Lesure added two goals, three assists one ground ball. Kate Auer addd two goals and one assist with six draw controls while Emilee Maher caused four turnovers and picked up four ground balls. Grace Johnson and Maddy DaCosta both added three points.
Rhi Jackson scored twice and picked up an impressive eight ground balls with five caused turnovers. Sophomore Jaclyn Langevin scored once with five draw controls and one caused turnover.
Castleton opened the scoring in the first 1:40 as Lesure found freshman Hannah Braman for the 1-0 lead. MacKay extended the lead to 2-0 four minutes later and the back-to-back goals from Lesure and Auer pushed the Spartan advantage to 4-0 with 18:18 left in the half.
MacKay made it 5-0 a minute later and three goals in 54 seconds by Auer, Emily Cross and MacKay stretched the Castleton lead 8-0 with 13 minutes remaining. Following MacKay's fourth goal, Maddi Kadanr put the Beavers on the board to close it to 9-1. The Spartans and UMF each scored twice to make it 11-2 at the break.
MacKay and DaCosta opened the second-half with goals in the first 2:03 of the period to extend their lead to 13-2. Jackson got a goal back but three straight from Castleton pushed its advantage to 16-3 with 17:35 remaining. The Spartans and Beavers each added a goal in the last 15 minutes for the 17-4 final.
Junior Meghan Els continued her impressive season, giving up just four goals while making nine saves to secure her second win of the season. Patty Smith took the loss as she made six saves in 30 minutes of action.
Castleton returns to the field on March 25 when the team hosts Plymouth St. at 4 pm.