by Alan Babbitt
The Hope College women's lacrosse team heads into conference play growing in confidence and complexity.
The Flying Dutch took another step in their progression on Tuesday night during an 18-6 victory against visiting Aquinas College.
Photo of Cora Davis, left, by Lynne Powe
Seven different Hope players scored as the Flying Dutch wrapped up non-league play with a 5-2 overall record.
"We ran a lot of good plays today," head coach Kim Vincent said. "It was fun to watch them experiment. Some of the new plays were challenging for them, and they were able to work through some of the kinks."
Hope begins pursuit of a Michigan intercollegiate Athletic Association championship on Saturday at 2 p.m. at Olivet College. The Flying Dutch were picked second in the preseason poll by the MIAA's coaches.
Against Aquinas, Hope never trailed after posting the first three goals of the match in a span of 1 minute, 41 seconds.
Six different players scored to propel the Flying Dutch to an 8-3 halftime lead. Sophomore attacker Rachel Elder of Grand Rapids, Michigan (East Grand Rapids HS) and midfielder Carly Pieri of Alto, Michigan (Caledonia) had two goals apiece during the first half.
Elder finished the game with a team-high four goals. Pieri totaled three goals and a team-high three assists.
Freshman midfielder Madison McCreery of Rockford, Michigan (Rockford) contributed three goals and two assists.
Senior attacker Allison Darnell of Farmington Hills, Michigan (North Farmington) collected three goals and one assist.
Sophomore attacker Jane Ragains of Western Spring, Illinois (Lyons Township) and sophomore midfielder Paige Wilmer of Columbus, Ohio (Upper Arlington) had two goals apiece. Wilmer also was credited with an assist.
Sophomore Madison Micho of Grand Rapids, Michigan (East Grand Rapids) also scored for Hope.
The Flying Dutch outshot Aquinas (1-6) by a 33-17 margin.
Sophomore goalie Laurel Frederickson of Alto, Michigan (Caledonia) made six saves for Hope.