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Knights Women's Lacrosse Season Recap

Knights Women's Lacrosse Season Recap

Rosedale, Md. -- After the first three games of the season, the Knights were 1-2 and getting ready for a road trip to upstate New York.

As it turned out, the colder temperatures did the team some good, sparking a five-game winning streak and ranking (No. 4) in the NJCAA Women's Lacrosse poll for the first time since 2012.

Essex defeated Genesee Community College 17-7 on March 30 in Batavia, N.Y. and then defeated Potomac State 20-2 on April 6, their second win over the Catamounts.

Next came a home-and-home with Howard Community College. The Knights bested the Dragons 18-5 (April 8) at home and 13-7 (April 8) on the road.

Arguably the team's most impressive win of the season came on April 14 at home against Monroe Community College.

The Tribunes had their 98-game win streak snapped two days earlier by Anne Arundel.

Essex would not allow them to start a new streak, downing Monroe 15-10.

The Knights' regular season, however, would end with back-to-back losses against Anne Arundel and Harford respectfully.

Anne Arundel would then take the Knights down in the Region XX semifinals to end their season.

All five of Essex's losses came at the hands of the Riverhawks (3) and Fighting Owls.

Up and Down Season Had Bright Spots

Sophomore attacker Jade Joyce (Loch Raven) led the Knights in assists (18) and points (58) and was second with 40 goals. She was tied ninth, 10th and 12th nationally in the same categories, respectively.

She had multiple goals in all but one game, including a career-high eight against Potomac State in the season opener.

Freshman midfielder Alex Strohman (Concordia Prep) led the team with 42 goals (10th in NJCAA) and was second in assists (13) and points (55)

Strohman also registered multiple goals in 10-of-11 games, with a career-high seven twice (April 6 vs. Potomac, May 8 vs. Anne Arundel in regional playoffs) and had 26 draw controls and 31 ground balls.

Freshman Makenzi Cullings (Perry Hall) played every minute – 600:00 – for the Knights between the pipes. She had the sixth most saves (90) and sixth best goals against average (12.54) in the NJCAA.

Cullings had double-digit saves in five games, including a career-high 21 in the regular season finale against Harford, who would go on to win a national championship.

Sophomore Madison D'Amico was arguably the Knights most versatile player this season.

The Perry Hall, Md. native scored 24 goals and had 12 assists, while leading the nation with 45 ground balls. She was also fifth in draw controls (72) and tied for fifth in caused turnovers (18).

D'Amico scored a career-high five goals twice this season (March 30 vs. Genesee, April 6 vs. Potomac) and had seven multi-goal games.

One of the pleasant surprises for the Knights' offense this season was the emergence of freshman Emily Dutton (Sparrows Point).

A volleyball player in the fall, Dutton entered the spring having never picked up a lacrosse stick.

By the end of the season, she had scored 23 goals on 61 shots and finished with 25 points. She ranked fourth on the team behind D'Amico in all three categories.

Dutton scored a career-high five goals on April 8 against Howard and followed that up with another four against the Dragons three days later.

Sophomore Marisa Hernandez (Eastern Tech) was the Knights' standout on defense, finishing the season with 11 caused turnovers, which ranked tied for 14th most in the nation.

She had two caused turnovers and two ground balls on April 11 versus Howard and a career-high three caused turnovers on April 25 against national runner-up Anne Arundel.

Ashlyn Hales (Eastern Tech) contributed heavily on defense and at the midfield as well.

The freshman had 17 ground balls, 17 draw controls and six caused turnovers.

Midfielder Bailey D'Amico (Perry Hall) was all over the field this season and set the tone for the Essex offense, especially in transition.

The sophomore's speed caught teams by surprise, as many times she would go from defense to offense with the ball without being touched.

She finished 2019 with nine goals, four assists, 25 ground balls, 14 draw controls and four caused turnovers.

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