Johnson & Wales opened their 2018 campaign on Tuesday afternoon at University of Saint Mary in Leavenworth, Kansas.
The KCAC conference game opened with the host Spires scoring on their first possession to go up 1-0. The two sides traded ground balls before Saint Mary added their second of the game just two minutes later. Madison Herbert (Berthoud, Colo.) made a stop on an attempt by the Spires to keep the game a two goal difference. Just over five minutes into the contest, Kyra Gangemi (Elkton, Md.) put the Wildcats on the board with her first of the season.
The hosts asserted themselves offensively through most of the first half and built up a 7-1 lead midway through the half. Katie Smith (Livermore, Calif.) got her first of the game and Gangemi added another as the Wildcats trailed 8-3 at the break.
In the second half, University of Saint Mary continued to maintain their offensive output adding three more to open the period. Smith put JWU's fourth goal up on the scoreboard with 20:22 to play. The Wildcats continued to get looks late but couldn't find the back of the net as they dropped their season opener, 17-4.
Gangemi and Smith each had two goals each for Johnson & Wales and each had four ground balls. Kyleigh Crespo (Colorado Springs, Colo.) had a team high five ground balls for JWU. Herbert made 16 saves for Johnson & Wales.
JWU will face Benedictine College on Thursday at 5pm MT.