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Notre Dame Women’s Lacrosse: Irish Clip Eagles, Remain Unbeaten

Defense comes up big as Irish improve to 6-0

Freshmen Kasey Choma and Madison Ahern, junior Andie Aldave and senior Jessi Masinko celebrate during Notre Dame’s 11-7 victory Saturday over Boston College.
Mike Miller/Fighting Irish Media

The No. 2 Notre Dame Fighting Irish exacted revenge against the Boston College Eagles for a close loss last year, tied the all-time series at eight and remained unbeaten this season with a 11-7 victory Saturday at Arlotta Stadium.

Junior goaltender Bridget Deehan saved 10 Eagles shots on goal — including five of six free position attempts — and the Irish defense caused 14 Boston College turnovers in a game punctuated by physical play.

Senior midfielder Savannah Buchanan led Notre Dame in ground balls (five), draw controls (five), caused turnovers (three) and fouls (seven). The Irish committed 35 fouls, including three yellow cards and two green cards, while the Eagles were responsible for 28 fouls, including two yellow cards.

Notre Dame, which had outscored its opponents 54-20 in the first halves entering Saturday’s game, established a lead within 47 seconds. Junior midfielder Andie Aldave, who scored the first goal, earned a yellow card on the subsequent faceoff. Boston College took advantage, posting two goals by sophomore attack Caitlynn Mossman and junior attacker Charlotte North, the transfer from Duke.

Kasey Choma scored her team-leading 18th goal when senior attacker Jessi Masinko found the freshman midfielder cutting in front of the Eagles net. Aldave converted a free position opportunity four minutes later to put the Irish back in front, but Boston College knotted the score at three six minutes later.

It would be the Eagles’ last goal for 22 minutes.

Sophomore goaltender Rachel Hall, who led the NCAA in saves last season, stopped five Irish shots in the first half. But Aldave snuck her third past the Oregon transfer to give the Irish a 4-3 lead at the half.

The Irish opened their largest lead of the game when junior attack Maddie Howe caught the Eagles slow to roll their defender guarding Samantha Lynch. The graduate attacker buried it past Hall to give the Irish a 5-3 lead.

The Eagles tried faceguarding Madison Ahern to stymie her, but the freshman attacker still managed to wiggle open and score to extend the Irish lead to 6-4. Seven minutes later, Masinko scooped up a ground ball, beat two Eagles defenders and found Hall out of position for an easy goal.

The Irish then ran a beautiful transition to score their eighth goal. Choma intercepted a pass, flipped it to Aldave, who bounced it to Buchanan, who connected with Lynch, who found Masinko waiting in front for the score.

In a game where just 12 combined goals had been scored in the first 54 minutes, the Irish and Eagles tallied six more points in the final six minutes.

Sophomore midfielder Hannah Dorney beat the shot clock with a bouncer past Hall with 5:43 remaining to make it 9-4. Makenna Pearsall, a graduate defender, busted through the restraining line during a man-down situation and scored on an unguarded Boston College net.

The Eagles scored two goals within 30 seconds, but junior midfielder Diana Kelly beat a double team on the ball and found Ahern for another empty net goal.

The Eagles (3-3, 0-1 ACC) will host Hofstra (4-2) on Wednesday, while the Irish (6-0, 2-0 ACC) head to Nashville to challenge the Vanderbilt Commodores (4-4). The Wednesday game will be the Commodores’ fourth straight versus a ranked team.