Strock's hat trick lifts Lyons to 5-4 victory over NEWMAC foe Clark

Strock's hat trick lifts Lyons to 5-4 victory over NEWMAC foe Clark

REHOBOTH, Mass.- Senior Jessica Strock (Centerville, Mass./Barnstable) scored three goals and assisted on the game-winner to lead the Wheaton College field hockey team to a 5-4 win over Clark University in Saturday afternoon's New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) contest at Faxon Field.

Already exceeding last year's overall win total and matching league victories, the Lyons extended their winning streak to five games while improving to 7-2 and 2-0.  The Lyons remain undefeated in three home matches.  Clark fell to 5-3 and 0-2.

Junior Emily Asack (Stoughton, Mass./Stoughton) scored on a pass from Strock for the eventual deciding goal with 13:57 remaining.  Clark pulled within one just over four minutes later on a tally from freshman Talia Fish (Philadelphia, Pa./Central) but the Lyons held on.

Wheaton controlled play in the first half with a 24-8 edge in shots, however the Cougars scored on their first attempt.  Fish redirected a pass from sophomore Mel Melkonian (Worcester, Mass./Saint Peter-Marian) at the 12:56 mark for the 1-0 lead.    The teams headed into halftime tied at one after Strock evened the score with her first goal at 19:35.  The marker followed a penalty corner and was assisted by junior Aliza Underhill (Corinth, Maine/Central).

Clark regained a 2-1 advantage 3:42 into the second half when Melkonian broke away down the left sideline and beat Lyon freshman goalie Ellie Massengill (Amherst, Mass./Amherst Regional).  Wheaton responded just 41 seconds later when freshman Emily Chick (Bangor, Maine/Bangor) collected an unassisted tally off a rebound in front of the cage.

The teams then traded three goals in a span of 53 seconds with a little under 20 minutes remaining.  Underhill set up Strock for the second time to put Wheaton in front 3-2 with 18:28 left.  Clark answered 16 ticks later when junior Meghan Lennon (Charlton, Mass./Shepherd Hill Regional) converted a feed from classmate Maureen Coakley (Worcester, Mass./Holy Name).

With 17:35 to go, the hosts regained the lead for good on Strock's third goal and second penalty-corner strike.  Senior Margaux Bolte (Belmont, Mass./Belmont) picked up the assist.

Wheaton held commanding advantages of 30-14 in shots and 18-6 on corners.  Massengill collected four saves in the victory, while Cougar junior Kate McGrath (Wilmington, Mass./Wilmington) was credited with 13 stops.

The Lyons return to action tomorrow for a non-conference game at Simmons at 1:00 p.m.