STANDISH, Maine – Top-seeded Saint Joseph's College (18-1) cruised past #4 Simmons University (7-12), 6-0, in a Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Field Hockey Tournament semifinal at the SJC Athletics Complex on Wednesday night.
Freshman Emma Rutledge (Alfred, Maine) recorded three goals and an assist and senior Arianna Kahler (Lisbon Falls, Maine) added a pair of assists to help the Monks advance to the GNAC Championship game for the fourth-consecutive season.
Saint Joseph's will host second-seeded Lasell College in the conference title tilt at 1:00 PM on Saturday. The Lasers steamrolled #3 Colby-Sawyer College, 5-1, in the other semifinal this afternoon.
For the Sharks, the semifinal setback signals the end of the 2018 campaign.
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Rutledge lifted the hosts to a two-goal lead in the opening 14 minutes with a pair of strikes off penalty corners, the first coming at the 7:41 mark off a Maddy Beaulieu (West Gardiner, Maine) dish and the second off a Kahler feed at the 13:42 mark.
Senior Kara Kelly (York, Maine) tacked on her seventh goal of the year, off a Rutledge pass, in the 23rd minute to make it a 3-0 game heading into intermission.
Sophomore Alexandra Belaire (Greene, Maine) extended the Monks' cushion to 4-0 with a slap shot from the top of the circle following a penalty corner. Kahler was credited with an assist on her teammate's 11th goal of the season.
Junior Libby Pomerleau (Limerick, Maine) added her 18th of the season off a Kayla Kelly (York, Maine) pass in the 52nd minute and Rutledge completed the hat trick effort with an unassisted strike at the 64:31 mark.
SJC senior Megan Baker (Gorham, Maine) turned away the only shot she faced in the triumph while Simmons sophomore Lucy McNamara (Brewster, Mass.) made seven stops in the loss.
Saint Joseph's held considerable leads in shots (19-3), shots on goal (13-1), and penalty corners (14-2) in the semifinal victory.
With the win, Saint Joseph's is now 20-8 in the history of the series with Simmons University and has now defeated the Sharks in six-consecutive meetings, a streak that began during the 2016 campaign.