LEXINGTON, VA. --- For the 10th straight season, the No. 1 ranked Washington and Lee women's lacrosse team claimed the ODAC Championship, as the top-seeded Generals defeated second-seeded Randolph-Macon, 17-7, in the title game on Sunday at Watt Field.
The championship was the 20th overall in program history. W&L (17-2) also earned its 14th straight victory and 18th consecutive home win. The longest winning streak in program history is 15 set in 2003 and 2017, and the team record for home wins is 19.
From the opening draw, the Blue and White maintained control of the contest, scoring the first four goals. First-year attacker Katherine Faria (Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y./Cold Spring Harbor) notched two of the four, junior attacker Dani Murray (Denver, Colo./Kent Denver) had one and senior attacker Haley Tucker's (Manakin-Sabot, Va./St. Catherine's) goal at the 24:17 mark pushed the lead to 4-0.
Senior midfielder Hannah Jones put the Yellow Jackets on the board (4-1) with 23:16 left in the half, but the Generals closed the period with eight straight goals. Sophomore midfielder Claire Fulton (Hagerstown, Md./Saint James School) started the run with a goal off a free-position shot at the 22:14, and then Tucker scored three of the next four, with Faria registering the fourth, to give W&L a 9-1 margin at the 9:17 mark.
Fulton added another free-position goal with 10:08 remaining, Tucker followed with her fifth goal of the game and senior attacker Cordelia Peters (Larkspur, Calif./Hotchkiss) finished off the run (12-1) with a goal with 2:50 remaining before intermission off an assist from sophomore attacker Landon Shelley (Charlotte, N.C./Myers Park).
In the second half, R-MC outscored the Blue and White, 6-5, but W&L's lead never dropped below nine, as the team cruised to the title. The Generals held a 37-14 advantage in shots, including a 27-4 margin in the first half. W&L also led in ground balls, 17-8, in the contest and draw controls, 18-7. Senior attacker Rebecca Wellford (St. Louis, Mo./MICDS) was key in the draw circle with a game-high nine.
Tucker spearheaded the attack with her five goals, to go with two ground balls and two draw controls. She moved to second on the W&L single-season goals list with 63, second on the single-season points list with 79 and sixth on the career goals list with 130.
Along with Tucker, W&L had four other players with multiple goals. Fulton notched four, Faria had three goals and one assist, Peters totaled two goals and four assists and Murray had two goals and two assists.
With her three goals, Faria moved into a tie for ninth on the W&L single-season goals list with 45. Peters jumped to seventh in career assists with 62. Shelley added one goal and three assists in the game.
Junior goalkeeper Elliot Gilbert (Bedford, N.Y./Deerfield Academy) played the first 52:06 of the contest, stopping seven shots and allowing five goals. Senior goalkeeper Ellie Aburn (Towson, Md./Notre Dame Prep) saw the final 7:54 of action. Junior defender Caitlin Anderson (Manhasset, N.Y./Manhasset) headlined the defense with two caused turnovers, two ground balls and four draw controls.
Following the conclusion of the contest, Anderson, Murray, Peters, Tucker and Wellford were named to the ODAC All-Tournament Team.
Jones led the Yellow Jackets with three goals on three shots. Junior goalkeeper Elicia Wells played the full 60 minutes in goal, making 12 saves.
With the victory, the Generals earned the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The team will find out who and where it will play this evening, as the NCAA selection show airs at 9:30 pm on NCAA.com.
ODAC All-Tournament Team
Senior Katie Clements – Roanoke
First-year Emerson Foster – Roanoke
First-year Emma Stiffler – Shenandoah
Junior Emma Hardisky – Shenandoah
Junior Elicia Wells – R-MC
Senior Saunders Riley – R-MC
Sophomore Bella Samper – R-MC
Junior Caitlin Anderson – W&L
Senior Rebecca Wellford – W&L
Senior Cordelia Peters – W&L
Junior Dani Murray – W&L
Senior Haley Tucker – W&L