CHICAGO – The time has finally come for Concordia University Wisconsin to celebrate, as it clinched the Midwest Women's Lacrosse Conference regular season title for the first time in program history on Thursday night with a 21-7 victory over Illinois Institute of Technology.
The Falcons dominated the MWLC, finishing with an undefeated 7-0 conference record and outscored opponents by a combined 123-28. With the victory they also clinched the No. 1 seed in the MWLC Tournament, which they host on May 1-2. Thursday night was no diferent than the previous six MWLC games this season for CUW, as they outshot the Scarlet Hawks 49-16, including 33-14 on goal. One of the many reasons for league opponents not getting closer than eight goals against the Falcons, was because of its balance on both ends of the field.
There were eight players in the scoring column for CUW, with four recording at least a hat trick. As well, 10 different players picked up a ground ball and senior Rebecca David (Oregon, Wis.) recorded seven saves in a complete game winning effort.
CUW scored just over 30 seconds into the game and led 3-0 less than two minutes into the contest. The Falcons scored five-consecutive once and three-straight twice to hold an 11-2 advantage with nine minutes to play before halftime. Illinois Institute of Technology scored three times before halftime to cut the deficit to 13-5. However, seven unanswered goals in the second half put the game out of reach for the hosts.
Seniors Steph Barry (Gurnee, Ill.) and Hayley Peppers (Franktown, Colo.), along with freshman Allison Kurek (Chicago, Ill.) led all players with four goals apiece. Senior Sammi Reiter (Stillwater, Minn.) added a hat trick and four other Falcons registered goals. Freshman Caitlin Henry (Lansing, Ill.) had a season- and career-high two goals and four ground balls. Kurek also had two assists, seven draw controls wins and three ground balls. Peppers also won seven draw controls.
Cassandra Reineke led the Scarlet Knights (5-10, 3-4 MWLC) with four goals and Isabel Meyers tallied two scores. Shacara Ledbetter won three ground balls, while Briana Villagrana made 12 saves in goal.
CUW (10-6, 7-0 MWLC) will travel to Augsburg College for a Saturday 11 am non-conference game, the final tune-up before hosting the MWLC Tournament on May 1-2.