Brown Women’s Lacrosse Opens Season with 13-11 Victory Over Iona

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The Brown women’s lacrosse team started off the 2016 season with a 13-11 win over Iona on Saturday afternoon at Stevenson-Pincince Field. The Bears outscored Iona by one goal each half and overcame a 3-0 deficit to start the game.

The game opened up with Iona dominating on offense, with three-straight goals. Brown (1-0) got on the board when senior Sarah Nesi (Westport, Conn.) scored at 24:06 with freshman Zoe Verni (Mamaroneck, N.Y.) recording her first collegiate point with an assist on the score. Senior Lauren Toy (Kentfield, Calif.) followed with a free position goal at 21:53 to inch within one of Iona.

The Gaels responded at 20:51 with a man-up goal to claim a 4-2 advantage. At 17:20, Nesi netted her second goal of the contest to bring the Bears within one yet again (4-3).

With a gap in scoring, Iona registered the game’s next goal at 7:54 to bring the score to 5-3. Junior Kerianne Hunt (Alamo, Calif.) next recorded an unassisted goal at 5:31.

Iona again responded and brought its lead back up to two (6-4) at 4:51 with a score.

With the first half winding down, Brown went on an offensive tear and fired off three unanswered goals to take a one-goal lead into the break (7-6). For the scoring in the sequence, Hunt tallied her second score of the game at 2:06 while junior Jillian Lee (Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y.) added a goal at 1:03. Toy, who gathered her second goal of the game, scored with 21 seconds remaining in the stanza.

Brown picked up where it left off and opened the second half with a goal, when Nesi completed her hat trick at 29:26 with sophomore Emma Dahle (Wynnewood, Pa.) contributing the assist for an 8-6 lead.

The Gaels got one back to bring the contest within one for them, at 28:07.

Hunt completed her hat trick at 23:49 with Lee providing the helper. Verni followed with her first-career goal at 22:49 in a free position goal, for a 10-7 advantage.

Iona scored the next two goals at 19:00 (man-up) and 13:13 to bring the score to 10-9, in favor of Brown.

Lee scored her second goal of the game at 12:30 and at 11:00 Toy recorded the third hat trick for Brown with a score, receiving the feed from Dahle.

Iona scored a man-down goal at 9:18 but Toy countered with her fourth goal at 5:19 (free position) for a score of 13-10.

The Gaels would get one back at 2:07 but the Bears’ defense held strong as they recorded the win.

Senior Victoria Holland (Huntington, N.Y.) earned with win in net for Brown with 30 minutes of action in the first half, recording seven saves. Sophomore Mikaela Karlsson (Framingham, Mass.) entered the game in the second and tallied five saves in 30 minutes.

Thea Leitman took the loss in goal for the Gaels and stopped three shots in 37:09 while Shannon McCaffrey registered two saves in 22:51 of action.

With the win, Brown moves to 3-0 all-time against Iona, with all three wins coming in each of the last three years.

Three Brown players earned hat tricks with Hunt and Nesi tallying three goals, and Toy scoring four.

The Bears won draw controls for the game at 14-12 and were 3-for-7 in free-position shots while Iona was 0-for-2. Iona held the overall shot advantage in the contest, 29-22.

Brown will remain at Stevenson-Pincince Field for two more games, in non-conference battles against Central Connecticut on Wednesday, Feb. 24 (4:00 p.m.), and versus Denver on Saturday, Feb. 27 (1:00 p.m.).