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Belles Take Conference Win Over Hornets

Kate Kelly, wearing a navy blue uniform, gets ready to pick up a ball off the ground with her lacrosse stick.
KALAMAZOO, Mich. - The Saint Mary's lacrosse team claimed a 16-7 conference win at Kalamazoo on Wednesday evening.
The Belles surged out to a 7-0 lead less than ten minutes into the contest. Shannon McCloskey put Saint Mary's on the scoreboard in the first minute of play, and the Belles quickly doubled the lead as Molly Stout scored nine seconds later. Emily Kraker collected her first save of the game as Kalamazoo put a shot on goal on their first possession. Bridget Kane found the back of the net four minutes later on a free position opportunity, and McCloskey sent home her second goal with 22:38 on the clock to make it 4-0.
Bridget Kane won the ensuing draw control, and Erin Doyle scored 11 seconds later to increase the lead to 5-0 as the Hornets called a timeout. McCloskey capped off the hat trick with 21:51 on the clock on a play in transition. Another won draw then led to another quick goal as Saint Mary's made it 7-0 with 21:28 on the clock. Kraker notched another save to keep Kalamazoo off the scoreboard, and the Belles made the most of that possession the other way with Kendra Osinski burying a shot just 22 seconds after Kraker's save. Kraker kept Kalamazoo's leading scorer off of the stat sheet with her third save in as many chances as the Belles then added another goal - this time by Kate Kelly - to push the lead to 9-0.
Kalamazoo broke into the scoring column with 14:42 on the clock, but another save by Kraker helped lead to offense the other way as Doyle tallied her second goal of the contest. The teams traded goals back and forth as Molly Stout had a free position goal between two Kalamazoo free position goals as the score moved to 11-3 in favor of Saint Mary's. The Hornets tallied two more goals in the span of a minute at 3:19 and 2:19 to make it an 11-5 game late in the period. A quick win of the next draw control by Kate Kelly and a strong connecting pass to Molly Stout in the critical scoring area yielded another goal by Stout just eight seconds after the Hornets' goal as the Belles took a 12-5 lead into the halftime break.
McCloskey opened the second half with a player-up goal off of a strong feed by Kane for a 13-5 lead. Kalamazoo responded with a goal less than a minute and a half later, but another draw control win turned into nearly instant offense as Raigan Althouse scored off of a pass from Doyle for a 14-6 advantage. Doyle added a free position goal less than three minutes later, and Gabby Belsito scored on a free position opportunity with under 19 minutes remaining on the clock as the Belles regained control of the momentum. In the span of six minutes between those goals, Emily Kraker made four big saves to keep the Hornets' attack at bay. Kalamazoo scored a goal with less than five minutes remaining in the contest as Saint Mary's came away with the 16-7 win on the road.
Shannon McCloskey had a game-high four goals to help pace the offense. Erin Doyle added three goals, two assists, two ground balls, and a caused turnover as the sophomore surpassed 100 career ground balls. Molly Stout posted three goals on three shots, and Bridget Kane tallied two goals and three assists.
Kate Kelly had a goal, two assists, seven ground balls, and nine draw controls as the senior co-captain became the first player in program history to amass 300 career ground balls. Additionally, she moved above the 100 draw control mark for the season for the second consecutive year. Raigan Althouse had a goal, an assist, and two ground balls. Kendra Osinski and Gabby Belsito each scored a goal.
Emily Kraker made a career-high 15 saves in goal as she stopped 68.1 percent of the shots on goal she faced in the contest. Rachael Leonard posted four ground balls and three caused turnovers.
The Belles (8-5, 4-0 MIAA) host Hope on Saturday at 1:00 p.m. The three senior members of the team - Rachael Leonard, Kate Kelly, and Molly Stout - will be recognized prior to the start of the game for their Senior Day.