Cats Trounce Canadian U-19 Team in Snowy Preseason Affair

In a frigid Saturday matinee, the University of Vermont women’s la-crosse team rewarded its resilient, face-masked, hot chocolate-sipping fans by crushing Canada’s U-19 squad, 12-5. The Cats were led by se-nior Becky Kenison’s four goals and the superb play-making ability of sopho-more Kristen Millar.Combined with stel-lar goaltending by junior Meaghan Hanley, the Cats left the frozen tundra of Moulton Winder Field with a victory in their lone pre-season tune-up before host-ing the University of Mas-sachusetts Feb. 28 in the 2007 season opener.After falling behind 1-0 early in the first half, the Cats quickly clawed back to take a 2-1 lead thanks to a beautiful, ankle-breaking goal by Kenison. Freshman Alison Haigh made it 3-1 with a highlight reel goal of her own. After racing up the right sideline and splitting two defenders, Haigh beat the Canadian goalkeeper while falling down to the icy and unforgiving planet Hoth-esque turf. Although Canada roared back to take a 4-3 lead, UVM tied the score on a backhanded, dropkick strike from sophomore Tori Wasson. Coupled with tallies from Kenison and Emilie Clark, the Cats ended the first half leading 6-4.As strengthening snow flurries bombarded the once green turfed sanc-tuary, the Cats went on to take control of the second half like only true Ver-monters could. Kenison, the beneficiary of a litter of crisp passes, picked up her third and fourth strikes of the game midway through the final stanza. Millar, a Whitby, Ontario native and recent member of the Canadian U-19 team that toured Australia over winter break, undressed her former teammates with a rash of glittering assists. Last season’s leading scorer (27-26-53) twice set up goals for sophomore Sarah DeStefano and the fi-nal tally by freshman Kait-lyn Fuller. Coupled with the suf-focating defense of senior Christine Yoon, Hanley only allowed a single goal in the entire second half.”I think we played pret-ty well against our first competition of the spring,” said head coach Jen John-son. “We are definitely a young team but we have more athleticism and depth than in years past. “The weather certainly provided its challenges to-day but we play and prac-tice in it everyday so we were used to it.”