Led by the four-goal, two-assist performance of Kaylin Berger '13 (#18, right-side photo) and the two-goal, three-assist effort of Allie Lynch '11 (#10, left-side photo), the Cardinals rolled past SUNY Farmingdale in the first-ever meeting of the squads Thurs., March 17, 19-2. The 19 goals matched the most by the Cardinals in three years as Wesleyan defeated Ohio Wesleyan, 19-12, during a game in Florida back on March 12, 2008. The last time Wesleyan netted 20 or more was April 13, 2006 when Wheaton was the victim, 20-12.
Kayla Ellman '13 got things started for the Cardinals just :17 into the game at Farmingdale, converting a pass from Catherine Taibi '13. Wesleyan added three more before the game was 10 minutes old, and picked up four more before halftime for an 8-1 advantage. Berger tallied the final two goals of the period, giving her three points during the frame.
Taibi opened the second-half scoring, twice receiving passes from Lynch and finding the net just 14 seconds apart for a 10-1 bulge less than two minutes in. A pair of free-position goals from Claire O'Brien '12 raised the margin to 12-1 as the Cardinals kept a 10-goal edge for the final 22 minutes of the contest.
Eleven different players found the twine during the game, six of them with multiple scoring as Ellman and Haley Greenberg '14 joined O'Brien, Lynch and Taibi with a pair of goals. Taibi also had an assist for a three-point afternoon.
Maggie Drowica '12 played in net during the first half for the Cardinals, stopping five of six shots on net. Lydia Kring '13, who scored a goal in the first half, was converted to goalie for her first collegiate action between the pipes and was touched for the second Ram goal, the only shot on net by Farmingdale in the second period. The Cardinals limited Farmingdale to 10 total shots in the game, seven of them on net, while collecting 47 of their own, 41 on goal.
Wesleyan returned to NESCAC action for its next contest, facing #13 ranked Middlebury on the road Sat., March 19. Berger again led the attack with four goals but it wasn't enough to overcome the powerful Panthers as the host prevailed, 15-5. Middlebury pulled away from a 1-1 tie with five straight tallies from 21:35 to 11:02 and did not allow the Cardinals to get closer than four goals before turning an 11-5 differential into the final margin with four goals in the final 7:46.
In ceryain regards, Wesleyan played a crisper game than Middlebury, picking up 21 ground balls to Middlebury's 20, turning the ball over three less times (16-19) and committing just 15 fouls to Middlebury's 35. But the Cardinals inability to execute on free-position opportunities hurt their chances of success as Wesleyan failed on each of its nine free-position attempts. Keeper Drowica finished the game with 11 stops.
Ahead for the squad is a non-conference home game with Roger Williams Thurs., March 26.