Dempsey Arsenault led the Brave to victory with a 4G, 1A, 8GB, 5DC, and 5CTO performance against the Fire
In a back and forth battle with several momentum shifts, WPLL Brave defeated WPLL Fire with a final score of 13-9. Led by Dempsey Arsenault’s 4G, 1A, 8GB, 5DC, and 5CTO, the Brave were able to sneak past the Fire. The Brave dominated around the circle, winning 17 draws compared to the Fire's 9. Amanda Johansen (7 draws), Arsenault (5 draws), and Marie McCool (4 draws) led the way for the Brave. Rewatch the full match on ESPN3 here.
Arsenault started the scoring off early. After Johansen won the opening draw, she found an open Arsenault who took it straight to cage, scoring at the 7 second mark. Another draw by Johansen on the next possession lead to another fast break goal, this time with Dana Dobbie scoring unassisted at the :31 mark. Three more goals by McCool, Dobbie, and Brooke Griffin had the Brave up 5-0 only 5 minutes into the first quarter. But then the Fire offense started to heat up. Playing in her first WPLL game of the season, 2x Tewaaraton winner from Northwestern Hannah Nielsen came up big, assisting on goals to teammate Molly Hendrick and Taylor VanThof at 6:37 and 7:44, bringing the score to a more manageable 5-2. Johansen and Dobbie responded, scoring goals of there own and bringing the score to 7-2 at the 10 minute mark. Nielsen struck again at 14:10, finding an open Katie Haus who made the score to 7-3. It was an impressive first quarter from veteran players Dobbie and Nielsen, with Dobbie tallying 3 goals and Nielsen tallying 3 assists. Though they started slow, the Fire were able to score 3 goals on 4 shots in the first quarter.
Continuing her productive afternoon, Nielsen scored the first goal of the second quarter on an unassisted rocket at the 1:01 mark, bringing the score to 7-4. At the 2:04 mark Arsenault assisted McCool, but the Brave would be held scoreless for the next seven minutes due to an impressive defensive effort from the Fire’s Spring Sanders, Morgan Stephens, and Courtney Waite. During this span the Fire scored three more times, with two goals going to Hendrick and one to Nielsen. Now 8-7 after the initial 5-0 deficit, the Fire were staging a comeback. Dempsey Arsenault struck back and scored her second of the day with 5 minutes remaining, making the score 9-7, but then the game became a defensive battle once again with neither team able to setup a solid scoring opportunity. With moments to go in the half Fire defender Courtney Waite came up with a huge defensive play, scooping up a crucial ground ball off a Gussie Johns save (shot by Johansen) that could have led to a Brave buzzer-beater. Waite was able to successfully regain possession and prevent the Brave from ending the half with another goal.
After a 16 goal first half the third quarter was a battle of the keepers. Kelsea Donnelly held the Fire scoreless in the third, coming up with 2 saves. Making her first appearance of the 2019 season, Caylee Waters, the first player drafted to the WPLL, was a wall in net for the Fire. Waters turned away 5 shots, allowing just one goal. The Brave was the only team that scored in the third quarter, with Griffin tallying her second of the day at the 3:42 mark.
Now down 10-7, the Fire had 15 minutes to stage a comeback. But the Brave would not give up easily. Arsenault completed her hat-trick at the 4:34 mark, with Nielsen following up with another goal at 6:54. Up 11-8, Arsenault scored unassisted yet again at 8:16, bringing the score to 12-8. At 10:39 VanThof scored her second of the day, but the momentum never shifted in the Fire’s favor due in part to the Brave’s dominance on the draw circle. Dobbie closed out the scoring at 12:35 (assist to Cortney Fortunate), and the Brave won 13-9. In the loss Waters led the fire with 11 second half saves, stopping 73.3% of the shots she faced.
GOALS: Hannah Nielsen 3; Molly Hendrick 3; Taylor Vanthof 2; Katie Haus 1;
ASSISTS: Hannah Nielsen 3; Michelle Tumolo 1; Katie Haus 1; Molly Hendrick 1.
WPLL Brave SCORING:
GOALS: Dempsey Arsenault 4; Dana Dobbie 4.Marie McCool 2; Brooke Griffin 2; Amanda Johansen 1
ASSISTS: Amanda Johansen 2; Marie McCool 1; Brooke Griffin 1; Cortney Fortunato 1; Dempsey Arsenault 1; Dana Dobbie 1
Attacker Kylie Ohlmiller paced the Fight offense, scoring 7 points on 5 goals and 2 assists
In a lopsided battle between two talented teams, the Fight confidently defeated the Command 16-9. Fight attacker Kylie Ohlmiller led the way, scoring 7 points on 5 goals and 2 assists. Ohlmiller's 5 goal performance now gives her a total of 8 goals, the most in the WPLL. Midfielder Taylor Cummings was also a key contributor for the Fight, filling out the stat sheet with 5G, 3GB, 6DC, and 3CTO in front of her home city of Baltimore. Playing in her first ever WPLL game, 2019 Tewaaraton Award winner Megan Taylor had an impressive debut, stopping 10 shots in three quarters of action while only allowing 5 goals. Earning the first WPLL start of her career, midfielder Nicole Graziano had an impressive game, tallying 4 draw controls while also causing some big turnovers off of exceptional checks. See the full game on ESPN3 here.
Ohlmiller revved up the Fight offense immediately, scoring the first three goals of the game at the 1:45, 5:56, and 9:25 marks with defender Caroline Fitzgerald assisting the 5:56 goal. Fight attacker Lindsey Ronbeck found the back of the net at 10:20, giving the Fight an early 4-0 lead. Command leading scorer Kristin Igoe closed out the quarter by putting the Command on the board at 14:44, bringing the score to 4-1 Fight heading into the second quarter.
The Command came out hot at the start of the second, scoring three in a row behind attacker Kierra Sweeney (2G) and midfielder Sarah Lloyd. Now tied 4-4 at the 5:58 mark, the Fight started to pull away. Cummings tallied her first of the day at the 7:08 mark, followed by Ohlmiller, who was buried a beautiful diving behind-the-back goal at 10:02 with the assist once again going to Fitzgerald.
Up 6-4 heading into the second half, the Fight had a 6 goal third quarter, capitalizing on three different Command offsides calls. Taylor Cummings started the quarter off, scoring her second of the day at 1:31 with the assist going to Apuzzo. Command attacker Olivia Jenner scored her first career WPLL goal at 2:26, and she would be the only Command player to score in the quarter. Up 7-5, the Fight went on a 5 goal scoring streak with Down, Apuzzo, Ohlmiller, Daniela Eppler, and Lauren Lea finding the back of the net. Ohlmiller, Eppler, and Lea scored at the 9:23, 13:26, and 14:42 marks, each on woman-up opportunities due to offsides calls against the Command. It was Eppler’s first career WPLL goal, and Lea’s first goal for the Fight after playing for the Fire during the 2018 WPLL season.
After a goal-filled third quarter the Fight had a comfortable 12-5 lead going into the fourth. The Command comeback, led by Kasey Behr (1G), Sweeney (1G), and Kenzie Kent (2G), was too little too late, as three more goals by Cummings and a second goal by Dowd secured the Fight victory, 16-9. The Fight scored on 51.6% of their shots, landing 77.% of their shots on goal. In the loss the Command landed 59.5% of their shots on goal and converted on just 24.3% in part to stellar goalkeeping by Taylor and Kelsey Gregerson.
WPLL Command SCORING:
GOALS: Kierra Sweeney 3; Kenzie Kent 2; Kasey Behr 1; Olivia Jenner 1;Kristin Igoe 1; Sarah Lloyd 1; .
ASSISTS: Kenzie Kent 1; Tanner Guarino 1.
WPLL Fight SCORING:
GOALS: Kylie Ohlmiller 5; Taylor Cummings 5; Katrina Dowd 2; Lauren Lea 1; Sam Apuzzo 1; Lindsey Ronbeck 1; Daniela Eppler 1.
ASSISTS: Katrina Dowd 3; Caroline Fitzgerald 2; Kylie Ohlmiller 2; Sam Apuzzo 1
About the Women’s Professional Lacrosse League
Founded in 2017 by 4x All-American, and two-time World Champion Michele DeJuliis, the WPLL is a professional league made up of 125 of the top post-collegiate female lacrosse players in the world and a youth development league connecting with the top high school players in the country. For both our professional and our youth players, the WPLL prioritizes character development as a means to excel in life on and off the field. The WPLL uses lacrosse as a vehicle to provide girls with skills that allow them to not only become better athletes, but also grow into confident and brave women. Thanks to a partnership with ESPN, in 2019 fans can tune in to all regular season WPLL games on ESPN3 and the Championship on ESPNU. For more information, visit prowomenslax.com, and follow on social media:
ESPN media contact: Anna Negron at email@example.com or 860-766-2233; @ItsAnnaNegron
WPLL Media Contact: Sam Jaffe at firstname.lastname@example.org