CANTON, Mo.- The Ave Maria University lacrosse team finished off a sweep of their midwest swing on Wednesday evening, controlling the action from the opening draw in a 19-9 victory over Culver-Stockton College in Missouri. The wins marked the first time since the 2017 season that the Gyrenes won back-to-back games away from their home turf. The Gyrenes scored 14 of 16 goals in one stretch of the match, rolling past the Wildcats on their home field in their season opener.
Ave Maria never trailed on Wednesday night, scoring their first goal just 35 seconds into the match, courtesy of freshman Mary Thorpe. After Culver-Stockton tied the score at one with 13:31 remaining in the quarter, the Gyrenes proceeded to score the next six goals, and seven of the next eight, to open up an 8-2 lead. Emma Davis, Hannah Shaffrey, and Abigail Seiler all scored twice in the opening frame.
The Gyrenes scored five of the six goals in the second quarter, continuing to punish the Wildcats to the tune of a 13-3 halftime lead. Seiler scored the first goal of the quarter just 15 seconds into the frame to log a hat trick for the game, and Mary Thorpe scored twice in the second to do the same.
AMU added four more goals in the third quarter, including the first two of the quarter. Orianna Eldridge and Hannah Shaffrey both scored in the first two minutes of the frame, giving the Gyrenes what would prove to be their biggest lead of the day at 15-3. Culver-Stockton scored the next three goals to cut the Ave Maria lead down to nine, but Seiler and Eldridge scored the final two goals of the quarter to make it 17-6.
Culver-Stockton outscored the Gyrenes 3-2 in the fourth quarter, but Ave Maria’s lead was far too large for the Wildcats to overcome. Shaffrey and Davis accounted for the final two AMU goals, with Thorpe adding an assist on Shaffrey’s goal.
For the second game in a row, Shaffrey was the leading scorer for the Gyrenes, scoring four goals and adding eight assists. Orianna Eldridge and Abigail Seiler both had four goals of their own, while Thorpe and Davis added hat tricks with three goals. Shaffrey and Baughman were the defensive leaders with five ground balls each, and Francesca Paige added three caused turnovers. In addition to her four goals, Seiler was AMU’s most effective player on the draw, logging eight draw controls.
The remainder of Ave Maria’s schedule is likely one of the toughest in the nation. Of AMU’s final nine games, seven will come against teams currently ranked in the top ten of the NAIA Coaches’ Poll, including six games against teams ranked in the top four. The first of those games comes Monday evening, when the Gyrenes welcome No. 9 Georgetown College to Gyrene Field. Opening draw of the first game of a four-match homestand is scheduled for 5:00 p.m.