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Will Beverina | email@example.com
Winthrop began its Big South lacrosse title defense in earnest last Saturday with a crushing 26-5 victory over Radford at Cupp Stadium.
Callie Bonnel’s two goals and one assist performance was the high point for the Highlanders in the team’s first-ever conference match, but the more experienced Eagles squad was an overwhelming matchup for the new program.
Winthrop went up early 3-0, but Bonnel’s first goal of the day to cut the deficit to two seemed to inject the young Radford team with some confidence.
The visiting side, however, made sure their lead was not too uncomfortable, going on a run of goals to end the first half at 16-2, with Emma Rogers finding the back of the net for the Highlanders in the meantime. They would only add to that lead to start the second frame, again scoring the first three goals of the half for a 19-2 cushion.
The Highlanders still kept at it, netting the next three goals off of strikes from Adrian Rius, Bonnel and Juliette Ruland, respectively. It ended up being the last of Radford’s offense on the day, as Winthrop scored the last seven goals of the match.
Emma Rogers continued her impressive season by scoring the other goal in the first half and also notching an assist. Her 16 total goals on the season trails only Gracie Peterson’s 17 for the team lead in goals. Ruland’s goal kept her on pace for third on the team with 13. Rius added to her tally by winning five draw controls, with Bonnel also winning two. Goalkeeper Hannah Rosen played all 60 minutes in net for the Highlanders and racked up nine saves.
The loss drops Radford’s record to 1-7 on the season, with a 0-1 Big South mark. Winthrop continues its roll at 10-2 overall with a 1-0 conference record.
The Radford women’s lacrosse team looks to bounce back with an upcoming North Carolina road trip. The Highlanders take on Gardner-Webb on March 30 at 5 p.m., then head to Buies Creek for a Saturday matchup with Campbell at 12 p.m.