March 15, 2014

Top Ranked Sea Gulls Down #10 Spartans in CAC Opener

YORK, PA – The top ranked Salisbury University Sea Gulls opened their Capital Athletic Conference schedule with a 10-3 win over tenth-ranked York College on a sunny but brisk Saturday afternoon in York.

The Spartans had their modest two game win streak snapped as they are now 4-2 overall and 0-1 in the CAC. The Gulls improve to 5-0 overall and 1-0 in the conference.

The Spartans got off to a quick start with goals from Kerri Nicolich (Islip, N.Y./Islip) and Sarah Castle (Annapolis, Md./Annapolis Area Christian) in the first seven minutes of the game.

The Sea Gulls methodically climbed back into the game. Salisbury's Kate Haker got the Gulls on the board with an unassisted goal at 17:35 left in the opening half. Shelby Nemecek tied the game just over two minutes later as she found the back of the net on a free position shot. Bethany Baer gave the Gulls the lead off a feed from Megan Wallenhorst at the 11:31 mark.

The Gulls closed out the half with two more goals as Haker and Baer scored to push the halftime lead to 5-2.

The Gulls extended the lead to 7-2 with two goals to open the second half before the Spartans' stopped Salisbury's seven-goal run with a Melissa Ritchey (Hampstead, Md./North Carroll) tally with 24 minutes left in the game.

Salisbury capped the scoring with three more goals including a pair from Shannon Carta as the top ranked team in the country remained perfect.

Baer led the Gulls with three goals while Haker and Carta added two each. Wallenhorst recorded three points on a goal and two assists. Nemecek contributed a goal, three draw controls, a ground ball and a caused turnover.

Castle, Nicolich and Ritchey scored York's goals while Ritchey also had a pair of ground balls. Sophomore Megan Strauch (Baltimore, Md./Perry Hall) collected a team-high four draw controls for York.

Salisbury outshot York 21-19 while they also held a 13-11 margin in ground balls. The Gulls won 9 of the 15 draw controls while they were perfect on free position shots, converting all three of their chances. York committed a season-low eight turnovers in the loss.

Ashton Wheatley earned the win in cage for the Gulls as she notched 11 saves in her 60 minutes of action. Ashley Smith (Cinnaminson, N.J./Cinnaminson) suffered the loss as she made six saves for York.

The Spartans travel to Dickinson College to face the Red Devils in a non-conference contest on Wednesday afternoon in Carlisle, PA. First draw is set for 4:00 pm.

Melissa Ritchey photo courtesy of Joe Rodgers

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