NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Vanderbilt lacrosse team wasted no time scoring the first goal in the Multipurpose Facility.
Just 11 seconds in, junior Kelly Chandler snagged the opening draw, raced 50 yards and fired a shot into the back of the net to spark the Commodores in their first game ever inside the state-of-the-art complex. Chandler's quick strike, along with a career-high nine draw controls, set the tone as Vanderbilt never trailed and led by as many as nine in the second half in a 16-9 victory over Boston University on Friday.
"Kelly is just so dominant on the draw and I think she really set the tone, including getting the first draw and scoring," coach Cathy Swezey said. "It set a huge tone for our team. It put us on offense quite a bit the first 20 minutes and that was big."
Mallory Schonk led the way with a career-high four goals for the second straight game as Vanderbilt improved to 3-0 for the first time since 2008. The Commodores are also on their longest winning streak since the 2012 season.
It was the first indoor lacrosse game ever for the Commodores, who had the benefit of moving indoors to the Mutltipurpose Facility as the VU Lacrosse Complex sat frozen in a massive sheet of ice. Below-freezing temperatures all week and on Friday didn't offer a break so Vanderbilt played inside as a boisterous crowd cheered from above on the second-floor balcony.
"It was great," Swezey said. "There was plenty of noise and just the energy of the whole facility — everything felt great."
Added Schonk: "Our field is in a sheet of ice so we would have been better off in ice skates rather than cleats today. It was awesome to get to play in here. We're really blessed to have this."
After Chandler's opening goal, Boston (1-1) tied it up a minute later. But the Terriers wouldn't get any closer as Schonk sliced in 40 seconds later for the first of four straight Vanderbilt goals. The Commodores actually scored six of the next seven goals to take an 8-2 lead. They kept BU an arm's length throughout, leading 11-5 at halftime.
The closest Boston got was within five goals when Mallory Collins, who scored a game-high five goals, found the back of the net 36 seconds into the second half. But Vanderbilt stay composed and answered with a flurry that pushed ahead to a commanding 15-6 lead. Schonk again started a stretch of four straight goals as Chandler, Meggie Ramzy and Caroline Peters also scored.
The Commodores manufactured a lot of their goals via isolation as only two of the 16 goals had assists. Vanderbilt scored on an impressive 62 percent of its shots (16-of-26), including 68 percent (11-of-16) in the first half.
Ramzy, despite battling a cold, tied a career-high with three goals. Chandler, Alexa Kunowsky and Jill Doherty each scored twice. Emma Dagres, Amanda Lockwood and Peters added a goal apiece. Dagres and Kayla Peterson each had an assist.
"I'm very pleased with the offense," Swezey said. "I thought we had great production. Our shooting in the first half was lights out. I couldn't be more pleased. I think maybe a little more composure at the end of the game, a little more ball possession would have been the smart thing to do. But overall I think our production was excellent."
Paced by Chandler (she has 17 draw controls in the last two games), Vanderbilt won the draw-control battle 17-11, including snagging the first nine draws. Doherty had a career-high four ground balls and Eliza Clemens and Margaret Fee each tied career-highs with three as VU claimed a 18-17 edge in that category. The Commodores also caused 11 turnovers, led by three apiece from Doherty and senior captain Maggie Forker, who registered a career-high.
In goal, Callahan Kent and Maddie Kratz each played a half and made six saves. Kratz took over after halftime, making four stops in her first action of the season as she recovered from an injury.
"It has been a rough few years and to be 3-0 is just ridiculous," Swezey said. "Most of all, I think the effort that went into today was excellent. Our team played so hard and with so much heart we couldn't be more pleased."