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PSC captures LEC Championship

PLYMOUTH, N.H. - Junior Katie Sheridan (West Sayville, N.Y.) scored a school-record 10 goals Sunday afternoon, leading Plymouth State College its second consecutive Little East Conference Women's Lacrosse Championship with a 20-8 victory over Eastern Connecticut State University at Arold Field.

It was a 5-5 game midway through the first half, but PSC went on an 8-1 run over the final 13 minutes of the half, including four goals by Sheridan, to take a 13-6 advantage into the break. The Panthers then opened the second half with six unanswered goals, three by Sheridan, to go up 19-6 before ECSU added a pair in the final two minutes of the game.

PSC, which defeated Eastern 12-8 in overtime in last year's LEC title game, extended its winning streak to six games and improved to 11-3 overall. ECSU, which had won eight in a row since losing to PSC (13-9) during the regular season on Apr. 12, falls to 8-5.

Sheridan was selected the LEC Tournament's Most Outstanding Player after her 10-goal performance, improving her season totals to a team-leading 62 goals and 20 assists. She also set the new PSC career goals mark with 169, and tied the all-time PSC standard for points (226). Robin Hartman set the Panther scoring record with 226 points (156 goals, 70 assists) from 1999-02.

Sheridan got plenty of help Sunday from freshman Bethany Brown (Norwich, Conn.) and junior Michelle Norton (Sandwich, Mass.). Brown finished with four goals and two assists, and Norton collected three goals and two assists. Seniors Julie Shields (Whitby, Ont.) and Eileen Rice (Nashua, N.H.) and freshman Lilly Silva (Lowell, Mass.) all chipped in with one goal apiece.

The Warriors got two goals apiece from sophomore Ashley Able (Mystic, Conn.) and senior Lauren Davern (Jackson Heights, N.Y.), all coming in the first 15 minutes of the game. Sophomore Mo Deegan (Westport, Conn.) assisted on three of Eastern's first four goals and scored the fifth, while freshmen Kara Mastroianni (Newington, Conn.) and Alana Florian (Southington, Conn.) and sophomore Sharon Kilpatrick (Londonderry, N.H.) scored one each for the visitors.

PSC junior netminder Carmen Villanueva (East Schodack, N.Y.) came up big, making six of her seven saves in the second half. Junior Erika Blozie (South Windsor, Conn.) made 16 saves for Eastern.

The Panthers are hoping for an NCAA Division III Tournament At-Large berth, but will likely receive an ECAC New England Tournament berth. ECSU is also hoping to be selected for the ECAC Tourney field, which will be announced Monday.

The Little East Conference Women's Lacrosse Tournament champion does not receive an automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament because a conference must be in existence for at least three years and this is the second year of women's lax as an official LEC sport.