WELLESLEY, Mass. -- Senior Courtney Peterson (Glastonbury, Conn.) scored a career-high seven goals to power Wellesley College lacrosse to an 18-16 New England Women's & Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) victory over local rival MIT on Wednesday at the Wellesley Fields Complex.
Peterson scored five goals in the second half for the Blue, who snap a two-game skid with their first victory over MIT since 2012 to improve to 4-4 overall and 1-1 in the NEWMAC. MIT has now lost four-straight to drop to 4-6 on the year and 1-2 in conference play.
Peterson led all players in the contest with eight points, also assisting on the game's final goal scored by sophomore Olivia Strobl (Stafford, Va.). Strobl scored a pair of goals for the Blue, who got a hat-trick from sophomore Dacia Persky (Las Vegas, Nev.) and two goals apiece from senior Mary Lemay (Longmeadow, Mass.) and junior Jenny Gubner (Pleasanton, Calif). Senior Nikki Sharkin (Summit, N.J.) added a goal and an assist, while sophomore defender Mariana Hernandez (Orlando, Fla.) also scored a goal and tallied an assist. For Hernandez, her second half goal was the first of her collegiate career. Junior Jenna Mulrenan (Glen Ridge, N.J.) had a game-high four ground balls and sophomore Lena Engbretson (Beaverton, Ore.) had a team-high six draw controls. Senior goalkeepers Wendy Nettleton (La Jolla, Calif.) turned back seven shots to improve to 4-3 on the year.
Sophomore Cecilia McCormick (Islip, N.Y.) scored a team-high five goals for MIT, who also got four goals from junior Emily Young (La Jolla, Calif.). Young also tied with junior Ashley Masucci (Windham, N.H.) for game-high honors with seven draw controls each. Senior Hannah Levy (Yardley, Pa.), junior Katie Notarangelo (Foxboro, Mass.), and sophomore Ana Flooks (Weston, Conn.) each tallied two goals in the game, while first year Rayna Higuchi (Solana Beach, Calif.) added another. Notarangelo also chipped in with two ground balls and three draw controls. In goal, junior Eva Boal (Princeton Junction, N.J.) made 13 saves in the setback.
Young scored first for MIT at 29:17, setting off a back-and-forth opening half that saw four lead changes and four ties before the Blue took a 9-8 advantage at the break. Peterson deposited a free position shot to tie the game at 28:07, only to see Young counter with her second at 26:15. Lemay tied the score, scoring her ninth of the season at 23:36, but it didn't last long, as McCormick scored her 22nd of the year at 22:41 to put the Engineers back ahead.
Trailing 3-2, Wellesley rattled off five-straight goals, with the last coming from Lemay on a feed from Persky to make the score 7-3 at 17:41. Back-to-back goals from McCormick then spurred a 5-1 MIT run, with the Engineers tying the contest at 8-8 when Notarangelo scored at 3:04. However, the Blue got the final word in the opening half when Persky made the score 9-8 Wellesley before the break.
MIT came out of the break firing on all cylinders, scoring six unanswered goals to take their largest lead of the game, at 14-9, when McCormick capped the run with her fifth of the game at 23:53. Levy, Young and Flooks also scored as part of the MIT rally. Now trailing by five, the deficit didn't rattle the Blue, as Wellesley responded with eight unanswered goals to turn a five-goal deficit into a three-goal lead with just over nine minutes left in regulation.
Peterson scored five of the eight goals in the run, with Gubner and Persky also finding the net. Hernandez capped the run at 9:18, finishing on a free position and scoring a goal that gave the Blue the lead for good at 17-14. Higuchi and Flooks scored back-to-back goals to draw MIT back to within one with 5:11 left in the contest, but Strobl finished on a feed from Peterson to seal the game for the Blue, 18-16.
Wellesley will travel to Smith for a 1:00 PM NEWMAC contest on Saturday, April 8, at 1:00 PM. MIT will also play at Smith in their next contest on Wednesday, April 12, at 7:00 PM.