BABSON PARK, Mass. -- First-year Kaitlyn Pettengilll (Hopkinton, Mass.) netted four goals, including a pivotal score with 12:11 remaining, and senior Jennie Williams (Andover, Mass.) made five saves in the second half to lead the top-seeded Babson College Beavers to an 11-9 victory over fourth-seeded Springfield College in the semifinals of the 2007 NEWMAC Women's Lacrosse Tournament at MacDowell Field on Saturday afternoon.
With the win, the Beavers, ranked seventh in the nation by the IWLCA, will play either second-seeded Wellesley and sixth-seeded Smith in Sunday's championship game at 1 p.m. Meanwhile, Springfield, which had been the two-time defending NEWMAC Tournament champion, falls to 9-8, with one regular-season game remaining Tuesday versus Western New England.
The two teams battled back and forth through the first 14 minutes of play before Babson used a 3-0 run midway through the half to open up a 6-3 lead. Springfield answered with back-to-back goals by senior Kerrigan Murphy (Hamden, Conn.) to cut its deficit to one, but the Beavers closed the half with three goals in the final 2:16 to take a 9-5 advantage into the break.
The Springfield defense clamped down in the second half, holding Babson's league-leading offense scoreless for the first 18 minutes. Meanwhile, the Pride's offense slowly chipped away at the Beavers' lead, as senior Ashley Martell (Billerica, Mass.) scored with 23 minutes left, Murphy tallied her fourth of the game with 20:08 remaining, and sophomore Erin Doolan (Blauvelt, N.Y.) struck with 12:46 left to pull Springfield to within one, 9-8.
On the ensuing draw, sophomore Jackie Godfrey (Franklin, Mass.) gained control for the Beavers, who eventually got the ball to Pettengill just outside the eight. The first-year star then made a tremendous move to get by a Springfield defender and fired a bouncing shot past rookie goalie Lauren McAuley (Yorktown, N.Y.) to give Babson some breathing room at 10-8 with 12:11 to play. Godfrey later added her second of the day with 7:39 remaining, putting the Beavers in front, 11-8.
Springfield made one final push when Martell scored to make it a two-goal game with 6:19 left to play, and a Babson foul on the ensuing possession gave the Pride a free position attempt with 6:03 remaining. However, Williams made two huge back-to-back saves for Babson - one on the free position and the second on an immediate rebound - to keep the visitors off the board. That would prove to be the final shot of the game for either team as Babson held on for the 11-9 victory.
Williams was clutch in net for the Beavers, making five of her nine saves in the second half, including four on free position attempts. Pettengill led the offense with four goals, while Godfrey added two goals and a game-high six draw controls. Junior Anita Martignetti (Winchester, Mass.) chipped in with two goals, one assist, and five draws, while Godfrey and junior Bethany Nardone (Duxbury, Mass.) each recorded two caused turnovers.
Murphy paced Springfield with four goals, while Martell finished with three goals and one assist. McAuley went the distance in net for the Pride, making eight saves.
SCORE BY PERIOD 1 2 Tot-------------------------------
Springfield College SCORING: GOALS: Kerrigan Murphy 4; Ashley Martell 3; Lisa Thomas 1; Erin Doolan 1.
ASSISTS: Heidi Eidse 2; Alexandra Bazzano 1; Rachel Lampros 1; Ashley Martell 1; Lisa Thomas 1.
Babson College SCORING: GOALS: Kaitlyn Pettengill 4; Anita Martignetti 2; Jackie Godfrey 2; Lindsay Bucci 1; Jess Parker 1; Anna Collins 1.
ASSISTS: Lindsay Bucci 1; Anita Martignetti 1.
SHOTS - Springfield College 22; Babson College 25.
SHOTS ON GOAL - Springfield College 15; Babson College 19.