NEWPORT NEWS, Va. -- Meredith College put away the host Christopher Newport Captains 20-14 in Saturday's women's lacrosse pairing to open the season. The Avenging Angels assumed the lead a third of the way into the first period and never relinquished control during just the second battle between the two programs.
Sophomore attack Lilia Cruz gave Meredith a 4-3 lead over CNU on her first goal of the day and went on to score a game-high 12 points. The captains would tie the match on their next two scores, but Cruz put MC Lax in the lead for good at 13:21 after Brittany Wartman forced a CNU turnover.
Meredith pushed their lead to as many as five in the first half on back-to-back goals from Holly Hite, but Christopher Newport netted two during the final two minutes of the period to trim their deficit to three before the buzzer.
Both teams continued to battle on both ends of the field, but the Avenging Angels remained in control throughout the second frame. Julie Capretti and Cruz scored a pair of quick goals late in the second period to give MC Lax their largest lead of seven with just over two minutes remaining in regulation. Wartman collected the next draw, but Hite's attempt was deflected to give CNU one final point on the day.
Cruz scored nine with three assists, and Hite collected 10 draw controls, scoring four with two assists and a pair of caused turnovers. Sarah Arbes posted seven draws with three caused turnovers, four ground balls, and Capretti and Olivia Higgs combined for nine points. Wartman and Henley Peatross forced two turnovers apiece with Natalie Purcell and Cruz notching one each.
Haley Whitfield returned to the goal for Meredith boasting seven saves with a pair of ground balls in her first appearance of the year, while Kaitlyn Ready earned the loss for CNU with 14 saves, three caused turnovers, and four ground balls for the Captains.
Meredith remains in Virginia for a 2 p.m. match-up Sunday at Virginia Wesleyan. Follow the live action HERE.