AMHERST, Va. – Sophomore Caroline Fletcher tallied seven goals and dished out one assist as the Bridgewater Eagles women's lacrosse team used a six-goal run in the first half to build a sizeable cushion en route to a 20-7 Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) victory on Thursday evening at Sweet Briar.
Despite the lopsided outcome it was Sweet Briar netting the first goal of the game to take an early advantage. Allison McLamb scored less than two minutes into the game to build a 1-0 lead for the Vixens but the advantage was short lived.
Just 36 ticks later, Bridgewater netted the equalized on Fletcher's first goal of the day as the Eagles tied the contest up at a goal each with 27:31 to play in the first.
Bridgewater (6-10, 3-6 ODAC) added a goal from Katie Freeman to take a 2-1 lead before the Vixens added a goal from the stick of Monica Ewansik to tie the game up at two goals each but it was as close as Sweet Briar would get over the remainder of the contest.
Sophomore Jesse Colligan scored with under 23 minutes to play in the first to build a 3-2 lead for the Eagles, opening a three-goal Bridgewater run. Paige Hennessy and Fletcher added goals later in the first to push the Bridgewater lead to 5-2 after nine minutes of play.
Sweet Briar's Genny Kelley broke up the Bridgewater run with a goal for the Vixens but the Eagles would respond in a big way.
Fletcher rocked in a free-position goal for her third tally of the day to kick-start a six-goal run for the Eagles which would eventually see Bridgewater run out to an 11-3 lead. Fletcher, Colligan, Freeman and Hennessy each added goals during the run to push the lead to eight goals with 10 and change to play in the first half.
The Vixens broke up the Bridgewater spurt with a goal prior to freshman Meredith Wimbrow getting in on the scoring and Jenna Devilbiss adding a tally to run the lead to nine at a 13-4 margin. Senior Peggy Russell tallied a goal to put Bridgewater up by double digits at a 14-4 gap but the Vixens scored the final tally of the half to trim the deficit to 14-5 at the break.
Bridgewater controlled play in the first half behind a 20-12 shots advantage on the offensive end while the Bridgewater defense forced nine Vixens miscues over the first 30 minutes.
Out of the halftime break, Fletcher wasted little time in adding her fifth goal of the day. With 28:23 to play, the sophomore found the back of the net to open the second half scoring prior to Freeman and Colligan getting back in the goals column to push the lead to 17-5.
Sweet Briar (3-12, 1-9 ODAC) broke off the Bridgewater spurt with a McLamb goal but the Eagles soon followed with three unanswered goals to run out to a 20-6 lead. Fletcher tallied an unassisted goal before posting her seventh goal of the day on a free position to push the advantage to 19-6. Devilbiss scored with 14 minutes to play and the Vixens added a goal in the final two minutes to finalize the scoring and hand Bridgewater a 20-7 win.
Fletcher's seven-goal effort marks the highest single-game goals total in more than 10 years for the women's lacrosse program. Her seven goals also propel her to the top of the team leaderboard with 34 tallies on the year.
Kelley and McLamb led the way for the Vixens offense and Emily Williams was tagged with the loss between the pipes.
The win for Bridgewater marks its sixth of the season and matches the program's wins total for each of the past three seasons.
Bridgewater will have an opportunity to pick up win number seven of the year on Saturday in the regular season finale against Washington and Lee. Opening draw against the Generals is set for noon at the Jopson Athletic Complex.