With 31 people on her team’s roster, it’s not often that women’s lacrosse coach Amanda O’Leary does not get the chance to play everyone in a game.
Wednesday’s rout of Fairfield, though, allowed her to clear the bench.
Twelve different Elis found the net yesterday on a blustery and wet afternoon at Johnson Field as No. 12 Yale (7-1) dominated the Stags (1-5) 16-9. The Bulldogs are now riding a six-game winning streak into their critical Saturday contest with Ivy power Princeton.
“It was a great team effort. We needed to be able to focus for 60 minutes and we did that,” O’Leary said. “We wanted to go over all our plays and execute them as well as we could.”
The Yale offense’s 16-goal performance was its second highest output of the season — one goal shy of a 17-goal game against the University of Pennsylvania.
Miles Whitman ’04 paced the team with three goals, and Katie Sargent ’05 and Clarissa Clarke ’03 added two apiece. With every healthy player getting into the game, a trio of freshmen — Katherine Brownson ’05, Erin Tush ’05 and Erica Durst ’05 — took advantage by tallying their first career goals.
“We felt like we have been playing a little bit rocky lately,” Tush said. “We felt like if we could break out today, we could get this kind of outcome.”
Unlike Yale’s last two wins — up and down contests against Boston University and Harvard — the Bulldogs controlled the game from start to finish. Yale scored three goals, all off 8-meter shots, in the first seven minutes to take a 3-0 lead.
The Stags got on the board only seconds after Yale took its 3-goal lead, but that was as close as they would get. Yale’s five goal halftime lead, 7-2, could have been considerably larger had Yale’s shooters been at their sharpest.
In the first half, the Bulldogs squandered plenty of scoring chances, connecting on only seven of their 18 shot attempts. At times, it seemed as if the Eli offense was playing catch with Fairfield freshman goalkeeper Monica Janowitz, who had nine saves in the half.
“Our shooting percentage was just awful,” O’Leary said. “We need to shoot to score. That is something we’ll really need to focus on.”
With the game comfortably in hand, O’Leary emptied her bench in the second half. Tush capitalized on the playing time and the playing conditions on her first college goal.
As she brought the ball upfield, Fairfield’s Megan Main slipped on the wet turf at her own restraining line. Tush scooped up the loose ball and proceeded untouched to the net, firing the ball past Janowitz to give Yale a 10-3 lead just over seven minutes into the second half.
“After I scored, I was really kind of shocked,” said Tush, who, as a defender, sees few scoring opportunities. “I got kind of lucky.”
Goalkeeper Amanda Laws ’03 got the start for Yale, making four saves while letting in two goals. C.K. Barber ’02 replaced her in the second half, stopping six shots and letting seven get by.
The Bulldogs will put their 6-game win streak and 3-0 Ivy record on the line Saturday with the biggest game of the year to date — a noontime showdown at No. 2 Princeton.