Women’s lacrosse team beats Benedictine, 8-7, for first win of season

LISLE, Ill. – Junior Brittany Hayes (Battle Creek/Lakeview) scored with 1:35 left in the game to lift the Olivet College women's lacrosse team to an 8-7 win over Benedictine University today at the Village of Lisle-BU Sports Complex in Lisle, Ill.

The Comets jumped out to a 4-0 lead in in the first 15 minutes behind two goals from junior Mackenzie Inman (Union City) and one each from juniors Taylor Guarnaccia (East Lansing/Haslett) and Jazmin Johnson (Grand Rapids/Northview). After the Eagles scored with 12:16 left in the first half, junior Geri Merrell (Battle Creek/Lakeview) put Olivet back ahead by four goals, 5-1, five minutes later at the 7:12 mark.

Benedictine scored the final two goals of the first half to cut its deficit down to two goals, 5-3. The Eagles added another goal one minute and 37 seconds into the second half to trail by one, 5-4. Guarnaccia pushed the Comets' lead back to two, 6-4, with an unassisted tally at the 25:28 mark.

Benedictine scored two straight goals to tie the game at 6-6 with 9:33 left in the game. Merrell gave the lead back to Olivet with a free-position goal 33 seconds later. The Eagles tied the game one more time, 7-7, at the 3:57 mark. Hayes scored the game-winning goal after receiving a pass from Guarnaccia.

Olivet finished the game with 24 total shots, placing 17 on-goal. Inman led the way with nine shots, including eight on-net. Guarnaccia, Inman and Merrell each scored two goals, while Guarnaccia also had the one assist for a team-leading three points. Guarnaccia, Merrell and sophomore Devin Blue (Traverse City/Central) scooped up three ground balls apiece. Freshman Xavier Vance (West Bloomfield) faced 20 shots in net and made seven saves.

The Comets host Southwestern (Texas) University Friday evening at the Cutler Athletic Complex, starting at 5 p.m. Olivet then opens Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association play Saturday afternoon when it welcomes Trine (Ind.) University to Olivet for a 1 p.m. contest.