ASHLAND, Va. -- Junior Nikki Salyers fired in a career-high five goals to help lead Virginia Wesleyan College's women's lacrosse team to a 14-7 Old Dominion Athletic Conference victory Tuesday at Randolph-Macon College.
Salyers (Severna Park, Md./Severna Park) scored the second goal of the game for VWC (4-8, 2-4) and two in the first half, before finishing strong with a three-goal second half. She tallied the Marlins' final two goals of the game in the last six minutes of competition.
Virginia Wesleyan never trailed in the contest as rookie Candace Carey (Charlottesville, Va./Albemarle) scored a little less than two minutes into the competition, assisted by junior Mari Carmichael (Seattle, Wash./Nathan Hale).
Salyers scored to give the Marlins a 2-0 lead, before R-MC (6-5, 3-2) hit the scoreboard. The teams traded goals until Virginia Wesleyan started to pull away with a four-goal surge close to the end of the first half. Courtney Shelton (Prince Frederick, Md./Huntingtown), Jenn Cathcart (Woodbridge, Va./C.D. Hylton), Natalie Belva (Colorado Springs, Colo./Liberty), and Salyers all scored in the run to give Virginia Wesleyan a 7-2 lead.
VWC led 8-3 at halftime and maintained at least a four goal advantage over the Jackets to the final buzzer.
Taylor Harding (Norfolk, Va./Norfolk Collegiate), Belva, and Carey each added two goals to the VWC offensive output. Belva also recorded a team-leading two assists.
Emily Lynch (St. Inigoes, Md./Leonardtown), Kelly Egan (Arnold, Md./Broadneck), and Rachel Johnsen (Laurel, Md./Atholton) led R-MC with two goals each.
Michelle Mace (Dumfries, Va./Woodbridge Forest Park) started in goal for VWC and produced nine saves. Nicole Woodworth (Culpepper, Va./Eastern View) had seven saves for R-MC.
Virginia Wesleyan competes again on Friday, April 6, hosting Hollins University at 4 p.m.