LEICESTER, Mass. – Freshman Molly Koon (Londonderry, NH) struck for five first half goals to lead the Wildcats of Wheelock College past the host Becker College Hawks, 8-2 in New England Collegiate Conference women's lacrosse semi-final action on Thursday evening. With the win, Wheelock (7-7) secured a place in the NECC Championship game.
The Hawks netted a pair of goals off the stick of junior Victoria Belcher (Seekonk, Mass.) while junior Kailee Ruyack (Beacon, NY) added an assist. Netminder Karena Prescott (New Bedford, Mass.) posted six saves in the loss.
Koon finished the night with six goals and a helper for seven points. Senior Molly Centore (Kennebunk, Maine) added a goal and an assist while senior Emma Marrs (Old Lyme, Conn.) dished out two assists.
Wheelock opened the scoring just 48 seconds into the game. Koon notched the first goal and added a pair of man-advantage scores to quickly make it a 3-0 game. Teammate Marrs found and open Centore in the box and the midfielder would post the fourth goal of the game. Koon would add another duo of goals before the Hawks would answer.
Trailing 6-0, the Hawks would finally tip-the-twine and break-up the shutout. Midfielder Belcher would pour in back-to-back goals to cut the deficit to 6-2 with just over five minutes remaining in the first half. First Ruyack found an open Belcher in the slot, then Belcher scorched an unassisted tally to give Becker some momentum. Koon would find freshman Katie Frade (Dartmouth, Mass.) with 1:51 left on the clock to push the Wildcat lead to 7-2 heading into intermission.
The teams would lock down on defense in the second half. Wheelock would hold the Hawks scoreless and add a late insurance goal for the 8-2 final. Wheelock's goaltender sophomore Meghan Lewis (S. Berwick, Maine) was sensational on the evening posting 18 saves in the game, including several from point blank range and off the free-position advantage.
The NECC Championship will be played at a date and time to be determined by the conference office. The Hawks finish the 2015 campaign with a 9-9 record.