Stags Edged at Columbia, 13-11

Connolly totals five points, Hellstein nets four goals for Fairfield

NEW YORK – A late run from host Columbia proved to be the difference on Wednesday afternoon as the Fairfield University women’s lacrosse team was on the short side of a 13-11 decision. Brenna Connolly totaled five points for the Stags with a hat trick and two assists, and Riley Hellstein scored four goals.

Fairfield (0-3) also got two goals from Lily Crager and one marker apiece netted by Alex Fehmel and Taylor Mitchell. Olivia Russell and Scarlett Sulliman each doled out an assist for the visitors.

Fehmel also came away with a game-high five draw controls, propelling the Stags to a 15-11 advantage on the draw. Hellstein pulled down two, increasing her career total to 142 draw controls to move past Chloe Morgan ’13 into second place all-time at Fairfield. The program record belongs to Melanie Raso ’14, who hauled in 153 draw controls in her career.

In the cage, Caleigh O’Connor made nine saves to go along with two ground balls and two caused turnovers. Katie FitzPatrick led the defensive effort with three ground balls.

Columbia (1-1) was led by two goals and three assists from Victoria Kalamaras. Taylor Quinn and Laine Parsons each added a hat trick for the Lions, with Parsons also dishing out one assist. Kelsey Gedin made 11 saves in the cage, including six in the second half.

The Stags and Lions traded goals for much of the first half, with Fairfield owning a 6-5 advantage with a little over 25 minutes gone in the period. At that point, Columbia ran off three straight to take an 8-6 edge before Hellstein banged home a free-position shot with just 11 seconds remaining to cut the deficit in half and send the Stags into the locker room trailing 8-7.

Fairfield would net the first three goals of the second half – courtesy of Mitchell, Connolly and Fehmel – to take a 10-8 lead with 24:19 to go, but the Stags would rattled the cage just once more in the game as Columbia scored five of the contest’s final six markers to claim a 13-11 home win.

The Stags return to Conway Field at Rafferty Stadium this Saturday, Feb. 25 for a 3 p.m. visit from Hofstra live on FairfieldStags.TV. That contest is the second game of a doubleheader that also features Fairfield men’s lacrosse challenging No. 14 Rutgers at noon on the Lax Sports Network.