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Feb. 23, 2013
BALTIMORE, Md. - The No. 9/10 Nittany Lion women's lacrosse team (1-1) dropped a tight 13-11 contest to No. 6/10 Loyola (1-1) on a rainy Saturday afternoon at the Ridley Athletic Complex.
Penn State took a 7-6 lead into the halftime break following a late goal from freshman Ally Heavens (Garnet Valley, Pa.), but Loyola scored four-straight tallies out of the locker room for a 10-7 lead and held the Nittany Lions to just two shots in the opening 17 minutes of the second half.
Nonetheless, Penn State stormed back from 12-8 down to make it a one score game with 8:31 to play after sophomore Tatum Coffey (Toms River, N.J.) tallied a goal. From there, Loyola netted a goal with 2:52 to play and held the Lions off the board to claim a two-goal victory.
Four different Nittany Lions tallied two goals in the setback. Freshman Jenna Mosketti (Fallston, Md.) and sophomore Maggie McCormick (Eldersburg, Md.) each scored twice and had one assist. Sophomore Kelly Lechner (Silver Spring, Md.) and Heavens scored twice, as well. Junior Mackenzie Cyr (Westminster, Md.) had three assists in the game for the Nittany Lions.
Additionally, senior Molly Fernandez (Baltimore, Md.), freshman Madison Cyr (Westminster, Md.) and Coffey each scored for the Nittany Lions. Freshman goalkeeper Emi Smith (Denver, Colo.) made seven saves in the setback.
The final stats were very even on both sides. Loyola out-shot the Nittany Lions by a slim 32-29 margin. The Geryhounds collected 20 ground balls to Penn State's 18. Both teams finished with 13 draw controls.
Loyola struck first with a goal 3:08 into the contest. The Greyhounds took advantage of a turnover before Molly Hulseman found the net to put Loyola up, 1-0. Loyola then claimed a 2-0 lead at 22:00 on a goal by Taryn Vanthof.
Trailing 2-0, Penn State pushed Loyola onto its heels with aggressive play on the offensive end of the field to counter with four unanswered tallies. Following a failed clear attempt by the Greyhounds, the Nittany Lions found the back of the net in the form of a Lechner goal at the 17:09 mark. McCormick found Lechner, who maneuvered in for the Lions' first score.
Just 58 seconds later, Mosketti fired a shot into the net, which knotted the score at 2-2. Madison Cyr handed the Nittany Lions their first lead of the afternoon after connecting on a free position attempt at the 14:51 mark. Heavens made it four-straight Nittany Lion goals after fielding a pass from Mackenzie Cyr and notching her first goal of the afternoon to make it 4-2, Nittany Lions, at the 14:14 mark in the first half.
Loyola halted Penn State's momentum with a quick attack from behind the net after a stoppage. Greyhound sophomore Annie Thomas netted the unassisted goal to make it 4-3, Nittany Lions. Nonetheless, Penn State came right back on the attack. Mackenzie Cyr found a cutting Lechner, who put the Lions up 5-3 with her second goal of the afternoon at 11:49.
Loyola answered with two goals in a span of nine seconds to quickly tie the contest at 5-5. Fernandez then used nifty footwork to zigzag between a pair of Loyola defenders for a clean look at the net. The Lion senior put Penn State on top by a count of 6-5 with a goal at the 8:31 mark.
The Greyhounds countered to make it 6-6, but a superb transition attempt from Coffey set up Heavens' second goal of the first half with just 19 seconds remaining on the clock. The Heavens tally sent the Nittany Lions into the locker room at halftime with a 7-6 lead after a back-and-forth opening 30 minutes of action.
Loyola came out of the break red-hot, scoring four-straight goals to claim a 10-7 lead with 16:36 to play in the contest. Two of the Greyhound tallies came on free position attempts.
The Nittany Lions quickly answered the 10th Loyola goal after Mosketti won the ensuing draw control and started a fastbreak attempt. Mosketti found McCormick, who scored to make it 10-8, Loyola, just nine seconds after the Greyhound goal.
Nevertheless, Loyola came right back and again made it a three-goal game with a goal from Hannah Schmitt with 15:44 to play. The Greyhounds made it 12-8 with 12:59 to play, but Mosketti tallied her second goal of the day and fifth of the season at the 11:09 mark to pull the Nittany Lions within three.
Following a Loyola yellow card, Penn State struck again with a McCormick shot over the right shoulder of Loyola goalkeeper Molly Wolf, which cut the deficit down to two at 12-10 with 9:10 to go. Lechner won the ensuing draw control, which led to a Coffey goal while going to her left in the crease, pulling the Lions within one on the scoreboard (12-11) with 8:31 to go.
That is where the score would remain until Loyola took advantage of a big sequence in the final three minutes. Penn State picked up a ground ball and moved into Loyola territory, but the Greyhounds forced a Nittany Lion turnover to re-take possession. On the ensuing offensive attack, Kara Burke notched a crucial goal for Loyola to make it a two-goal margin with 2:52 to play. The Nittany Lions threatened in the final two minutes, but the Greyhounds hung on for the 13-11 victory.
The Nittany Lions return to action on Wednesday when they travel to Duquesne for a 7 p.m. matchup in Pittsburgh. Penn State then travels to Virginia on Sunday, March 3 at 1 p.m.