by Andrew Goodwin, Sports Information Assistant
SPOKANE, Wash. – The Whitworth women's lacrosse team enters the home stretch of its inaugural season this week when it takes on Whitman and Puget Sound.
The Bucs battle the Blues on Wednesday, April 17 at 5 p.m. Then, the Pirates host Puget Sound in their final home game of the year. A senior day ceremony precedes the game, which is scheduled to begin at 4 p.m.
Fans can follow the games through live links available on the Whitworth women's lacrosse schedule.
The Pirates: Whitworth (1-10, 1-7 NWC) picked up the first lacrosse win in school history last weekend, downing Pacific (Ore.) 18-13 on Friday. The Bucs outscored the Boxers 9-3 in the second half to earn the win with Laura Wells netting 10 saves in just that half. Trinity Frank and Liah Gingerich combined for half of Whitworth's goals in the win, and Frank set a new program-high with five goals. As a team, the Pirates also set a new program record with 19 caused turnovers in the win. Frank led the way with four, while Kalista Fourre, Grace Schmidt and Jordan Cain each contributed three more.
Whitworth fell to Linfield 21-9 in its second game of the weekend, but the Bucs showed plenty of improvement despite the result. The Pirates fought the Wildcats to a 6-6 draw in the second half, keyed by a 50% reduction in turnovers. Gingerich and Frank scored four goals apiece, and Cain added one more.
Let's Be Frank: Trinity Frank has made an impact all over the field in the Pirates' inaugural season. The freshman midfielder leads the team in goals with 22 and ranks in the top 10 of the Northwest Conference in groundballs (32 – 4th) and draw controls (36 – 7th).
Going to the Wells: Laura Wells volunteered to try her hand at goalkeeper during the offseason and the Pirates are glad she did. The first-time netminder holds the Whitworth individual game records for saves (10) and save percentage (54.5%). Wells is also tied for fourth in the NWC in total saves with 58.
The Blues: Whitman (6-3, 4-2 NWC) split its games last weekend. The Blues fell 20-15 to Linfield before bouncing back with a 23-3 victory over Pacific. After losing to Linfield, Whitman dropped to third place in the Northwest Conference, but the Blues have the most games remaining of any conference team to make up the gap after travel issues derailed an early-season home weekend. Sage Ali leads the Whitman offense with 43 goals on the year, the third most in the conference. Starting goalkeeper Anna Cadigan ranks third in the NWC with an 8.21 goals against average. Last time the Pirates and Blues squared off, Whitman came away with a 21-3 victory in the Pine Bowl.
The Loggers: Puget Sound (6-5, 4-4 NWC) will be looking for its third straight win when it visits the Pine Bowl. The Loggers defeated Pacific (14-12) and Willamette (10-6) last weekend to even their Northwest Conference record. Puget Sound boasts a dangerous offensive duo in Jenna Kisner (31 goals) and Ali Walker (27 goals), and a quality goalkeeper in Charlotte Donnelly (10.01 GAA). Last time the Loggers and Pirates squared off, Donnelly saved half of Whitworth's shots and three players scored four goals to give Puget Sound a 15-8 win.
Looking Ahead: The Bucs close out their season on the road, taking on Willamette and George Fox on April 27 and 28.
The Coach: Noelle Brouillard became Whitworth's first women's lacrosse coach in May 2017. Brouillard came to Whitworth from the University of Scranton, where she was the top women's lacrosse assistant coach for two seasons. Scranton had a 22-13 record over the two seasons Brouillard served as assistant coach. The Royals advanced to the Landmark Conference tournament championship game in 2017 and finished with an 11-6 record.