Amherst rookie Maddie Hoeg has been a solid offensive contributor off the bench all season.
Jeffs Earn At-Large Bid to NCAA Tournament, Will Face Washington & Lee at Salisbury
May 10, 2005
AMHERST, MA - After falling to defending national champ Middlebury College in the NESCAC title game, the fourth-ranked Amherst College women's lacrosse team earned an at-large bid to its fifth straight NCAA Tournament and will travel to Salisbury University this Saturday for one of four NCAA Regionals. The Jeffs (12-3) will face Washington & Lee University (14-3) in Saturday’s second regional semifinal - game time is set for 2:30 p.m. - after Salisbury (14-0) hosts either Springfield College (12-5) or Eastern Connecticut State (12-6) at 11:30 a.m. Saturday’s winners will meet in the NCAA quarterfinals Sunday at 1 p.m., also at Salisbury.
Amherst has marched through regional play in each of the last four seasons and reached three of the last five national championship games, falling to Middlebury in 1999 and 2001 before breaking through with the program’s first-ever NCAA title in 2003. Senior Ashley Harmeling (N. Reading, MA) leads the Jeffs with 60 points on 42 goals and 18 assists and is a two-time InsideLacrosse.com Division III National Player of the Week and NESCAC Player of the Week selection. A First-Team All-America and the IWLCA Attacker of the Year as a junior, she shattered Amherst single-season records for goals (75), assists (52) and points (127) last season and currently stands second in the conference in points per game (4.29), third in goals per game (3.00) and sixth in assists per game (1.29). Joining Harmeling among the NESCAC elite is Alyssa Briody (Hopewell, NJ) with 54 points on 32 goals and a team-best 22 assists in a breakout sophomore campaign. She ranks third in the conference in assists per game (1.47) and fourth in points per game (3.60). Fellow sophomores Dana Kuper (Denver, CO) and Lauren Dudley (Baltimore, MD) and juniors Caitie Parker (Bethesda, MD) and Scotty Hanley (Baltimore, MD) bolster the Jeff attack as Kuper has 15 goals and nine assists, while Dudley and Parker have a matching 16 goals and four assists each and Hanley has chipped in 12 goals and four assists. Senior Cate Smith (Saint James, MD) and first-years Maddie Hoeg (Shoreham, NY) and Gretchen DeLuke (Lewiston, NY) have been solid offensive contributors off the bench all season. Sophomore Liz Wise (Scarsdale, NY) has been similarly impressive in the midfield, tallying 20 points on 14 goals and six assists to go along with 39 draw controls, 27 ground balls and 32 forced turnovers, while classmate Rachel Lewis (Denver, CO) has been a key component in the midfield, logging the most minutes of any Jeff this year. Senior co-captains Liv D’Ambrosio (Farmington, CT) and Jenna Swan-Gross (Philadelphia, PA) anchor the Amherst defense. D’Ambrosio has played nearly every minute between the pipes, piling up 143 saves, while Swan-Gross is one of the Jeffs’ top defensive stoppers. Solidifying the defense are junior Laura Brown (Bethesda, MD) and sophomore Emery Sweeney (Darien, CT), who have combined for 63 ground balls and 53 caused turnovers. Sophomore Maggie Roth (Berwyn, PA) has been the team’s top defensive substitute, coming off the bench in 14 of 15 games this season.
Washington & Lee enters the tournament ranked 13th in the nation after claiming the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) Championship with a 6-5 victory over Randolph-Macon College. Juniors Amanda Strickler (Lexington, VA) and Kate Lester (Wilmington, DE) and sophomore Kelly Evans (Lexington, VA) pace the offense. Strickler boasts a team-high 46 points on 21 goals and 25 assists, while Lester has 33 goals and a pair of assists and Evans has 25 goals and 10 assists. First-year netminder Sarah Tilbor (West Simsbury, CT) touts a 5.79 goals against average and 119 saves.
Full Tournament Bracket
AMHERST IN THE NCAA TOURNAMENT: Seventh appearance / 14-5 all-time (7-0 home, 7-5 road)
- 1996 (Fell to Trenton State, 20-9, in first round)
- 1999 (Beat visiting Colorado College, 21-13, in first round… won at Bowdoin, 15-9, in national quarterfinals… beat the College of New Jersey, 11-8, in national semifinals… fell to Middlebury, 10-9, in national championship game)
- 2001 (First-round bye… beat visiting Wellesley, 20-10, in second round… beat visiting Ithaca, 13-6, in national quarterfinals… beat the College of New Jersey, 11-10 in overtime, in national semifinals… fell to Middlebury, 11-10 in overtime, in national championship game)
- 2002 (First-round bye… beat visiting Colorado College, 15-8, in second round… beat visiting Union, 13-6, in national quarterfinals… fell to the College of New Jersey, 10-7, in national semifinals)
- 2003 (First-round bye… beat SUNY Cortland, 20-9, at Gettysburg in second round… beat Regional host Gettysburg, 12-5, in national quarterfinals... beat the College of New Jersey, 12-10, in national semifinals... beat Middlebury, 11-9, in national championship game)
- 2004 (First-round bye… beat visiting Scranton, 20-4, in second round… beat visiting Plymouth St., 21-6, in national quarterfinals… fell to Middlebury, 13-9, in national semifinals)
- 2005 (First-round bye… to face Washington & Lee at Salisbury in second round…)