Pace Women’s Lacrosse: Season Preview


The Pace Women’s Lacrosse Team (Instagram: @pacewlax)

Amine Kassaoui, Feature Editor

PLEASANTVILLE, NY – The ninth women’s lacrosse season in Pace University history begins this Wednesday night, at 7 p.m., with a road contest at Molloy University.


Pace was voted No. 12 in the national Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association Division II preseason poll, and third in the regional Northeast-10 Conference Women’s Lacrosse Coaches’ poll.


Pace plays 16 regular-season games in total, the first four out of conference, followed by 12 consecutive NE10 contests.

The beginning of the Setters’ season is incredibly front-loaded, filled to bursting with games against some of the best teams in all of Division II, as Pace faces seven nationally ranked opponents in their first 11 games, including three straight non-conference road games versus some of the very best squads in the nation following the season-opener.

On March 4 Pace travels to Pennsylvania to take on the No. 1 ranked team in the country, East Stroudsburg University. The Warriors were NCAA Tournament finalists last season. Next up for the Setters is a trip to Lakeland, Florida, to take on No. 4 Florida Southern College on March 12. The arduous road trip concludes on March 15 against the No. 7 ranked University of Tampa.

In a brief respite, the Blue & Gold next face the College of Saint Rose (March 18) and Southern Connecticut State University (March 21), teams that Pace easily defeated last season.

The schedule ramps right back up with back-to-back visits from the two most decorated teams in the NE10: No. 6 Le Moyne College (March 25) and No. 2 Adelphi University (March 29). Pace has never defeated either the Dolphins or the Panthers, with matching 0-9 records against each.

Pursuant to a trip to Southern New Hampshire University on Apr. 1, Pace is right back to facing nationally ranked opponents, with No. 19 New Haven University (April 4) and No. 21 Bentley University (April 8) visiting Pace Stadium.

The schedule softens up in the final five games of the regular-season, with a road tilt at No. 17 Assumption University (Apr. 26) being the lone major test remaining for the Setters prior to the postseason.


Kayla Conway earned her second consecutive NE10 First Team selection last season, making her the first Pace player ever to make back-to-back NE10 First Teams, with career-best numbers of 55 goals, 17 assists and 108 draw controls. The Long Islander sits in third place all-time with 118 goals, and in fourth with 145 points.

Angelina Porcello burst onto the scene in an explosive sophomore campaign, scoring 54 goals, dishing 12 assists, with 100 draw controls.

The Setters were the only team to have two 50+ goal scorers and 100+ draw controllers in 2022.

Jolie Urraro was second on the team with four game-winners, and fourth in goals (38), assists (11), and shooting percentage (.521). Urraro scored the game-tying and game-winning goals in an epic come-from-behind triumph versus Assumption in the NE10 quarterfinals.

In her first full season on the pitch, attacker Sydney Juvelier was unstoppable, scoring 45 goals in just 14 starts, on an incredible .746 shots-on-goal percentage.

Coming off a serious knee injury which kept her off the field for the entirety of last season, Emma Rafferty is back in a Blue & Gold uniform for the first time since 2021. The Bay Shore native adds a wealth of experience and tenacity to the midfield with 100 goals in 34 career starts.

Defensively, it will be up to seniors Jennifer Sommer, Delilah Doyle, Lindsey Gelderman, amongst others, to protect the cage.

In net, Ashley Belfiore and Kate Laico will likely split starts for the second straight season.


Pace tied the program record for wins with a 14-5 overall mark last spring, including a 10-3 conference record.

In the Northeast-10 Conference Championships, Pace engineered a herculean quarterfinal effort, erasing a five-goal deficit to defeat Assumption, 13-12, off four Urraro goals and a stout goalkeeping performance from Belfiore, who saved two shots in the final seconds, including a free-position shot.

The semifinal was unfortunately a reverse for the Setters, who blew a 10-3 halftime lead at eventual NE10 Champion Stonehill College, 20-15, in the most heartbreaking game in program history, being outscored 17-5 in the second half.


Tricia Molfetta’s six-year tenure as Pace women’s lacrosse head coach has been defined by two factors: regular-season success and monumental playoff collapses.

Molfetta’s biggest triumphs include a 49-22 overall record, and an all-time program best regular-season record of 14-5 on two occasions.

However, her albatross has been a penchant for giving up huge playoff leads, and an incapability for her squads to get past the conference playoff semifinal round:

2018 NE10 semifinals: Four-goal lead blown to Le Moyne.

2019 NE10 quarterfinals: Five-goal lead blown to New Haven.

2021 NE10 semifinals: Two different three-goal leads blown to Adelphi.

2022 NE10 semifinals: The aforementioned seven-goal blown lead to Stonehill.